So This Is Jazz

So This Is Jazz

So This Is Jazz

So This Is Jazz

Excerpt

This book is, so far as I know, the first attempt to set down a connected account of the origin, history and development of jazz music. It is not a technical treatise, but a story for the reader who would like to know a little something more about what he has been enjoying -- or detesting -- for the last decade.

It is quite difficult to get accurate and authenticated information about the beginnings of jazz, recent as these beginnings are. Until our little group of serious thinkers, spurred on, I think, by the provocative pen of Gilbert Seldes, began to take up jazz in a serious way, it was demodé, declassé and several other things in French -- the idle and vulgar amusement of the bourgeoisie. It is only since H. R. H. struck up a speaking acquaintance with Paul Whiteman and George Gershwin was invited to dinner at Mrs. Astor's that jazz has become an Art. In the early days an occasional young reporter, short of anything else to write about, would drag a story about jazz out of one of its exponents, serving it up with a sauce of his own imagination that might heighten its picturesqueness, though sure to lessen its accuracy. From such random and frequently inaccurate information I have had to pick and choose in trying to assemble facts. Nowadays there is only too much information -- much of it as inaccurate as the old, due to uninformed or misinformed dilettants, who seek to climb into the . . .

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