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The era of popular music from about 1917 onward saw an explosion of creative songwriting that converged with a new sound from reed, brass, and rhythm instruments. Jazz was born, and the musical sophistication that accompanied this original sound set the stage for the prominence of arrangers, whose role in big band orchestrations became as important as jazz musicians and composers themselves. The Big Band evolved as a unique phenomenon in American music history. With both studio and live vintage recordings readily available, an investigation of how to listen and experience Big Band music is overdue. In Experiencing Big Band Jazz: A Listener's Companion, composer/arranger, music historian, and music editor Jeff Sultanof takes a fresh look at Big Band music, examining why the Big Band era started when it did; how pop music changed to meet the needs of Big Bands and the reverse; the role played by well-known band leaders and the bands they led, the jazz soloists who became legendary, and the stories of several ensembles previously unexamined. Lists of must-hear recordings and videos drawn from studio as well as live sources are also included to make the book an invaluable resource for music lovers of every age.
About the Author
Jeff Sultanof is a composer, arranger, conductor, writer, and historian of American concert and popular music. His articles are published by jazz.com, rifftides.com, and the Journal of Jazz Studies (Rutgers University). He is a pioneering editor of vintage jazz ensemble and concert music and has several hundred publications to date under his name. Sultanof has taught at Five Towns College, the Institute of Audio Research, and has lectured extensively on music, the music business, motion pictures, and contemporary educational practices.