The Wonder of Jazz by Sammy Stein

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The Wonder of Jazz – Music That Changed the WorldWOJcover ISBN 9781800688728.jpg

ISBN 978-1-80068-872-8
Publisher – Independent Publishing Network

This new book delves deep into the heart of jazz. A book that not only shares the history, influences, and impact of this musical genre, reading The Wonder of Jazz, authored by Sammy Stein, is like being in a room with some of jazz’s coolest people and spending a couple of hours just soaking up their passion and knowledge.

Telling its story from the origins of jazz, this award-winning author, columnist and reviewer shares her knowledge generously and with an authority that makes this new publication a defining work on the subject.

So much more than a visit down jazz’s memory lane, this compendium is as compelling and informative to jazz novices and the music makers of the future as it is to those totally at home with the genre’s complex harmonies, intricate rhythms, and creative arrangements.

Sammy Stein has created a book that takes the reader from jazz’s beginnings to the present day – but with a twist. Most jazz books are written from an observer’s viewpoint, but this book comes from the heart of jazz – with input from over 100 musicians in discussion with the author. What exactly is jazz, and how do you know you are listening to it? Do we truly know when and how jazz first originated? Who was the first jazz musician? How does it link to other genres? How has it affected society, culture, art and fashion and how does the future look? What about women in jazz? And writers and journalists? Do reviews make any difference? Is the story of jazz more complex than the accepted chain of events?

This book is a deep dive into jazz’s history, impact, and future. It discusses the social, cultural, and political influence of jazz – the music that changed the world – and reveals areas where jazz has had an impact we may not even realise. Its influences on hip hop, the connection to third stream, classical, and other art forms are all discussed as well as the future, the impact of young people and how they are changing established canons from within. The journey this book takes the reader on is one of discovery and revelation.
Some of the information comes from research by the author but much comes from those in the music, those who teach, witness the reactions of an audience, and understand how relevant jazz is right now.

The book looks at jazz’s game changers – the people after whom the music was never the same, civil rights, gender, jazz dynasties, and how jazz musicians have lent their power to deliver political messages in subtle and not so subtle ways.

The author says: “This book is about jazz music’s vitality, energy, and dynamism and its people, the ordinary people making extraordinary music.”

As a leading authority on her subject, reviewers say of Sammy Stein: “Her subjects bridge generations (and international boundaries) to honour the past, assess the present, and point to the future.” Emile Menasche, Jazz Times.

It’s all here, beautifully written, eloquently argued, clear-eyed in its intentions and open in its invitation” Jane Cornwell, Jazzwise Magazine.

The sheer volume and status of the people who have given up their time to help Sammy, both women, and men, is a testament to the respect Sammy has earned across the industry and the trust people have in her to relay their stories faithfully.” Darren Harper, Jazz Matters

“Ms. Stein writes in a commanding and authoritative style that ensures that the reader’s attention is grasped from the outset, and sets out her statements and opinions clearly and concisely before backing them up with solid facts and opinions ” Nick Lea, Jazz Views.

The Wonder of Jazz – Music That Changed the World is available now from Amazon, Waterstones, B & N, and all good book stores.

About the author
Sammy Stein is a reviewer, columnist, and author. She writes for Jazz Views, Something Else Reviews, Free Jazz Collective, and is the jazz correspondent for Platinum Mind. She has curated and hosted radio shows, and her books have won praise, including a Jazz Times Distaff Award and a place on their Gearhead list. Her ‘Women In Jazz’ book (8th House) won Phace Magazine’s Music Book of The Year award. She is International Editor for the Jazz Journalists Association and has had work commissioned into the Library of Congress in America, a huge honour for a non-US writer.

Passionate about jazz music, Sammy curated and organised the London Jazz Platform festival, which showcased acts from the UK, Europe, and America. She has hosted radio series, including Ladies of Jazz, The Freer Side of Jazz, and curates the Jazz Treasure Trove for Jazz Bites Radio.

Website: Sammy Stein 

Notice: Material and book cover reproduced with kind permission.


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