Monthly Archives: August 2012

Music for Week 2

Here’s a link of all the music that isn’t on the Norton CDs as well as a proper recording of Ella Fitzgerald singing “I Got Rhythm.” As a reminder, the sheet music for both “St. Louis Blues” and “Maple Leaf Rag” is available in the “Goldschmitt” mailbox in the ACE Humanities Office.


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Music for Week 1

Here are the tracks I plan to cover tomorrow (as listed on the syllabus) that are not available on the Norton Jazz Recordings. You will need to be a NCF student to access the files.

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Storms and Hurricanes

New College will be closed on Monday due to Isaac’s approach. In honor of the impending weather, I have decided to post a few of my favorite jazz recordings about storms, rain, and hurricanes.

Lena Horne, “Stormy Weather” (1943)

This song was Lena Horne’s signature song for decades.

Elis Regina & Tom Jobim, “Águas de Março [Waters of March]” (1974)

Someone in mini-classes asked if we are covering any bossa nova song. Yes, we are indeed, although they will only be covered for one day. Thus, I take advantage of blog posts to expose you to more.

Elis Regina and Antônio Carlos Jobim recorded this song in Los Angeles. It continues to be one of the more celebrated of his ouvre, a full 15 years after the bossa nova trend began.

Herbie Hancock / VSOP “Eye of the Hurricane” (1986)

This song was originally on Hancock’s Maiden Voyage (1965), a post-bop album we’ll discuss in the second half of the class.

What are your favorite weather-related jazz songs?



Béla Fleck and the Flecktones, “Hurricane Camile” (1990)

I searched high and low for this recording on YouTube, Grooveshark, and SoundCloud. It turns out that Béla Fleck’s tune is more popular on YouTube as an arrangement for H.S. drum-lines.

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I neglected to mention that both of the required texts for History of Jazz are placed on reserve in the NCF Library (I have recalled Keeping Time). You’ll also notice a number of other jazz related texts on the reserves list that might be useful for projects and papers.

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Elijah Wald and the Blues

Elijah Wald is a music writer and guitarist who has approached topics as diverse as the history of rock ‘n’ roll,* the dozens, narcocorridos, and delta blues legend Robert Johnson. He has also taught at my alma mater, UCLA.**

In this chapter from The Blues: A Very Short Introduction, Wald introduces the relationship between jazz and blues, starting with the statement, “Blues and jazz have been intertwined since before either style had a name.” He then proceeds to tell a history of how the two styles developed in relationship to each other. It’s a fun, quick read.


*This is available as an eBook through the USF library website.

**His feedback influenced an early direction I took with my bossa nova research.

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Syllabus Draft

Here is a link to the syllabus. Updated syllabus is now available here. Second updated syllabus is available here. Let me know in the comments or via email if you have any questions about the form of the class.

For now, I’ll leave you with a recreation of Kansas City swing (“Blues in the Dark” by Count Basie and Jimmy Rushing) in 1934 from Robert Altman’s Kansas City (1996). The video features solos by James Carter and Joshua Redman:

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