Blues People


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This study attempts to place jazz and the blues within the context of American social history. The author, Leroi Jones - also known as the poet Amiri Baraka - combines a knowledge of black American culture with his direct contact with many of the musicians who have provided the backbone to this vital strand of American 20th-century culture. This edition includes an introduction by the author in which he updates the book in order to take account of developments made in the past 30 years.

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David C

Jul 2, 2020

Dated but Excellent

By far, this is the best, most concise account of where and when the unique American musical art form known as the blues (and jazz) came to be. Leroi Jones was a trusted source for music as well as social knowledge and he combines the two as a means of explaining and describing the growth of blues music up through the 1960s. The final chapter takes a quick look at where blues/jazz went after the pop music industry got involved with spin-off genres like funk, for example. Jones puts ownership of blues and jazz where it belongs: with the African-Americans who created it.

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