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The Boston Jazz Chronicles Paperback – April 1, 2012


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The Boston Jazz Chronicles + Jake Hanna: The Rhythm and Wit of a Swinging Jazz Drummer + Walk Tall: The Music & Life of Julian "Cannonball" Adderley (Hal Leonard Jazz Biographies)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Troy Street Publishing, LLC (April 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0983991006
  • ISBN-13: 978-0983991007
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #290,338 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Robert M. Freedman on April 16, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful book. Richard Vacca's writing style makes it a truly enjoyable read while the abundant factual/historical information it contains qualify it as an outstanding reference source. The photographs, original maps, extensive index and bibliography all contribute to putting this work in a class by itself.

I was in the greater Boston area during the last nineteen years covered by these Chronicles and I am truly impressed by the depth and accuracy of the author's knowledge. While reading the book I even learned a few new things about some of the people I'd known during that time.

Vacca is not a jazz musician but his understanding of the music and the language he uses to convey it would seem to contradict that fact. The Boston Jazz Chronicles provides a great reading experience which I highly recommend.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jack Vaughan on November 25, 2012
Format: Paperback
Jazz is New Orleans, Jazz is New York - beyond that it gets a little dicey. Is jazz Chicago? Montreux? LA? Paris? Philadelphia? Altoona? Fact is there are a number of places off the beaten track worth consideration, having raised individuals and aggregations that influenced the major American art form. My adopted home town of Boston is one of them.

Storyville, Lenny's on the Turnpike, the Hi-Hat, Wally's Paradise (still active) .. these were Boston jazz night clubs - stops along the way for musicians, jazz fans, party people and kitchen help. From the late 30s to the early 60s, all combined to make a moment. This moment in time is worth archiving.

I would like to give compliments to Richard Vacca writing The Boston Jazz Chronicles - Faces, Places, and Nightlife 1937-1962. He has rigorously sought out the facts, found the witnesses, and conveyed the feel of a night club jazz era that took place in Boston. [Full disclosure: Way back I set out to write a similar book, or more likely magazine article. Talked with Jaki Bayard and Tony Cinomo. Didnt get too far past that. So was really glad to get and dig into this book by Richard Vacca.]

Got a chance to attend a lecture by Vacca at Wally's. Engaging, dedicated to understatement, his portrayal of the pivotal Boston scene of jazz painted a prescient picture. You know, "Wally" was a friend of "Red" (Malcom X) when he lived in town in the 40s - role played by Spike Lee in the Spike Lee movie - showing the link between music, history, and Saturday night.

Was there a Boston sound? Not exactly. It could be said that it was halfway between the hard bop sound and the cool school of the West Coast. It had a bit of the conservatory, and bit of the vaudeville circuit spin. It was well-written, and well-arranged.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Richard Vacca has given us beautifully written, exhaustively researched, lovingly presented account of a critically important era in American culture. Fans of music (regardless of genre), musicologists (ditto), professional performers (ditto), cultural historians and consumers of culture (worldwide) should be aware of the significance of the time and place about which Mr. Vacca writes.
And he writes about it with care, accuracy, humor, and mindfulness. I've had the good fortune of having lived in the area since birth in the late 1940s; I've had the pleasure crossing paths with Rivers, Byard, Viola, McGhee, Vega, Gil, Konitz,, et. al,; I've ridden the bus down Mass Ave (past The Wigwam, Wally's, etc.) since the '50s; I shopped at Raymond's in the early '60s, and I was been raised by parents who recalled having danced to Duke's band (and others) on the Ritz roof, at the Totem Pole, at Revere Beach, and a dozen other locales. I can, therefore, attest that The Boston Jazz Chronicles is essential reading those who would have a background in Boston cultural life.
Caveat: the fact that a few of the dates of photos (judging from auto tail-lights) might be off by a couple of years doesn't, in any way, affect the value and accuracy of this treasure.
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By patricia rodriguez on December 7, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great read for all you jazz lovers. This book is about all the jazz clubs, the muscians that worked in them at a time when jazz was at it's best.
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