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Monk's Music: Thelonious Monk and Jazz History in the Making Paperback – December 5, 2007

3.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Solis's viewpoints are advanced by excellent writing and argued very competently. . . . . Versatile and timely approach . . . innovative methodology."--"Arsc Journal"

From the Inside Flap

"Gabriel Solis's study of Thelonious Monk's legacy energizes an important development in jazz studies. Respectful of Monk and his musical heirs, Solis nevertheless offers insights on Monk myth-building by opposing jazz camps in which both moldy figs and avant-gardists claim him as their own. Moving beyond exploding these turf battles, Solis comes to deep realizations about jazz as a practice. This will become an often-cited work, even a transformative one."—Steven F. Pond, author of Head Hunters: The Making of Jazz's First Platinum Album (winner of the International Association for the Study of Popular Music's Woody Guthrie Prize)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 252 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press; 1 edition (December 5, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0520252012
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520252011
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,951,961 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By George Osner on December 2, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Monk's Music is a fine read that will repay your attention. It will appeal to you if you are interested in music, especially jazz, and the way it interacts with and is given context by the culture it exists in. Jazz fans, Monk fans, music fans, and anyone with an itnterest in music and culture will want to read this book.

This is a book grounded in the academic tradition--yes, it uses big words and knotty concepts. It requires focus and attention to read. On the other hand, if you are willing to put in a bit of effort, the average music fan will find much of interest, and your effort will be repaid amply.

Solis sets about examining some very interesting questions, like "how does someone become a Jazz icon?" "In an evolving musical genre, where slavish reproduction of a musical work is not valued and is indeed a source of disrespect, how does the ongoing evolution of a set of musical works take life and substance?"

If you are expecting a biography of Monk, or a simple analysis of his music, you will be disappointed--although the book does provide an excellent synopsis of Mon's life to provide contest, and also provides lucid analysis and commentary on the music.

Solis gives life and context to his discussion by incorporating the results of extensive interviews with musicians who played with Monk, a primary resource that has depth.

A unique and interesting book, I recommend it to anyone interested in jazz, music, and culture, and of course anyone interested in Monk and his music.
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Format: Paperback
I bought this book thinking it would give me information on the music of Thelonious Monk, but was disappointed when I realized it was a book more interested in how other musician's look back at Monk as opposed to the music itself. Reads like a text book.
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