Nat Hentoff, renowned jazz critic, civil liberties activist, and fearless contrarian - 'I'm a Jewish atheist civil-libertarian pro-lifer' - has lived through much of jazz's history and has known many of jazz's most important figures, often as friend and confidant. Hentoff has been a tireless advocate for the neglected parts of jazz history, including forgotten sidemen and women. This volume includes his best recent work - short essays, long interviews, and personal recollections. From Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong to Ornette Coleman and Quincy Jones, Hentoff brings the jazz greats to life and traces their art to gospel, blues, and many other forms of American music. "At the Jazz Band Ball" also includes Hentoff's keen, cosmopolitan observations on a wide range of issues. The book shows how jazz and education are a vital partnership, how free expression is the essence of liberty, and how social justice issues like health care and strong civil rights and liberties keep all the arts - and all members of society - strong.
Nat Hentoff is an internationally known jazz critic and the only critic ever designated a Jazz Master by the NEA. He is a regular columnist for Jazz.com and the Wall Street Journal, the United Media Newspaper Syndicate, and the Cato Institute, where he is a senior fellow. His many books include Jazz Country; Jazz Is; The Jazz Life; Boston Boy: Growing Up with Jazz and Other Rebellious Passions; Living the Bill of Rights; and the forthcoming Is This America?
Contents Foreword by Lewis Porter Acknowledgments Introduction Part One. What Am I Here For? The Rules of My Jazz Odyssey 1. Who Owns Jazz? 2. My Debt to Artie Shaw 3. The Family of Jazz 4. Beyond the Process 5. Playing Changes on Jazz Interviews Part Two. In the Presence of Ellington 6. Inside the Ellington Band 7. Duke Ellington's Posthumous Revenge 8. Essentially Duke (and Wynton) 9. Ellington's Band Is Heavenly in These "Live" Forties Recordings Part Three. Jazz Credentials 10. Is Jazz Black Music? 11. No One Else Sounded Like "Pee Wee" Russell 12. Just Call Him Thelonious 13. Remembering Dizzy 14. Oscar Peterson: A Jazz "Behemoth" Moves On 15. A Great Night in Providence for Jazz and Snow 16. The Perfect Jazz Club 17. Anita O'Day: The Life of a Music Legend 18. The Music of the 1930s Is Back in Full Swing 19. The Expansive Jazz Journey of Marian McPartland 20. Going Inside Jazz with Wynton Part Four. The Jazz Life On and Off the Road 21. Memories Are Made of This: A Conversation with Clark Terry 22. Man, I'm So Lucky to Be a Jazz Musician: Phil Woods 23. Conventional Unwisdom about Jazz Part Five. Who Is a Jazz Singer? 24. Are Krall and Monheit Jazz Singers? 25. Billie Holiday, Live: A Biography in Music 26. This Daughter of Jazz Is One Cool Cat 27. The Springtime of Frank Sinatra 28. Sinatra Sings in Vegas, and You Are There 29. She's on the Road to Renown 30. Bing and Guests Swing on the Air Part Six. The Life Force of the Music 31. The Joyous Power of Black Gospel Music 32. The Healing Power of Jazz 33. Old Country Jewish Blues and Ornette Coleman 34. The Jewish Soul of Willie "The Lion" Smith Part Seven. Finding the First Amendment Groove 35. Satchmo's Rap Sheet 36. The Constitution of a Jazzman 37. How Jazz Helped Hasten the Civil Rights Movement 38. The Congressman from the Land of Jazz 39. Jazz Musicians in the Public Square 40. Quincy Jones--Past, Present and Future Part Eight. Roots 41. King Oliver in the Groove(s) 42. Giants at Play 43. Barrelhouse Chuck Goering Keeps the Blues Alive 44. Jazz's History Is Living in Queens ... 45. Uncovering Jazz Trails 46. Expanding the Map Part Nine. The Survivors 47. The Thoreau of Jazz 48. A Living Memory of Dr. Art 49. Barren Days 50. Keeping Jazz--and Its Musicians--Alive 51. In New Orleans, the Saints Are Marching In Again 52. The Beating Heart of Jazz Part Ten. The Regenerators 53. Bridging Generations 54. The Rebirth of the Hot Jazz Violin 55. The Newest Jazz Generation 56. Born in Israel 57. Theo Croker Arrives 58. The Ladies Who Swung the Band 59. Nineteen-Year-Old Saxophonist Verifies Future of Jazz Part Eleven. The Master Teachers 60. A Complete Jazzman 61. The Lifetime Teacher: Jon Faddis 62. A House of Swing--for All Ages 63. Inside the Jazz Experience: Ron Carter 64. These Little Kids Think Coltrane Is Cool Epilogue: My Life Lessons from the Jazz "Souls on Fire" Credits Index