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V-Discs: A History and Discography (Discographies) Hardcover – December 23, 1980

ISBN-13: 978-0313222078 ISBN-10: 031322207X

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Hardcover, December 23, 1980


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Product Details

  • Series: Discographies (Book 5)
  • Hardcover: 1166 pages
  • Publisher: Greenwood Press (December 23, 1980)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031322207X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0313222078
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.8 x 2.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,256,040 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


“Everything you could ever want to know seems to be here including some fascinating illustrations such as letters, recording sheets, labels, and the like....The amount of detail packed into this large but easy-to-handle volume is positively staggering....cannot be praised highly enough.”–Int. Assoc. of Jazz Record Collectors Journal

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The V-Disc program was intended to provide music suitable to the varied tastes of active duty military personnel during World War II. The first generation of generally available music recordings was nearing its end and it was assumed that music was now a commodity that just about everybody wanted. The program was conceived early in the American involvement in WW2 but didn't really offer a lot until some time into the War, and it lasted some years after, into the late Forties.

For the most part, the music made available was recorded specially for the V-Disc program. All kinds of music were recorded, jazz, classical, pop in its various forms. In some cases, it could be argued that we have a certain kind of music only because of the V-Disc program.

After the War, laws continued in force that prohibited the ownership or trading in these records to those who didn't get them through government issue. One collector actually went to prison for having gotten together a hoard he wasn't legally entitled to.

The story of the program is told from start to finish in this book. To my knowledge it isn't told elsewhere, though various jazz writers refer to it in passing, e.g. works on Duke Ellington. The bulk of the book, however, is a catalog of the works issued by V-Disc with various recording data. It's a big catalog.

This book should be of considerable interest to those who have a settled, continuing interest in American popular music of mid-century. Secondarily, it might interest World War II buffs.

I've given the book five stars; it completely fulfills its purpose. If you're uninterested in the purpose, it'll be of little or no value. If you're interested in, say, Duke Ellington or Count Basie, really interested, and the book is sitting on the shelf somewhere in an academic library you can talk your way into, have a look at it. It's what people used to call a reference work.
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