Read e-book online Artie Shaw, King of the Clarinet: His Life and Times PDF

Biography

By Tom Nolan

[Previously released as 3 Chords for Beauty’s Sake: The lifetime of Artie Shaw]

IN THE exuberant decade among 1935 and 1945, while America’s indigenous paintings form—jazz—was additionally the nation’s well known track, no musical performer used to be extra recognized, arguable, favorite, and reviled than Artie Shaw: the intense, good-looking, outspoken, and unpredictable clarinetist and bandleader whose hit recordings (“Begin the Beguine,” “Frenesi,” “Star Dust,” “Summit Ridge Drive”) bought hundreds of thousands, whose marriages to a number of attractive ladies (including motion picture stars Lana Turner and Ava Gardner) made headlines, who risked alienating his public by way of calling a wide bite of them “morons,” and whose widespread abdications from the dominion of swing earned him a name as jazz’s Hamlet.

With no formal education, Artie Shaw grew to become a virtuoso musician nearly with out peer: a clarinet participant prompted as a lot through trumpeters, violinists, pianists, or even painters as through fellow reedmen. His lyrical solos appeared to evoke visible photographs: a fowl in flight, a tree moved by means of wind, a sailboat within the moonlight. On a ballad, his harmonically adventurous enjoying explored each attractive corner and cranny of a melody; on a rousing swing song, his euphoric horn soared excessive and joyous sufficient to elevate the roof.

He grew up as a participant within the Nineteen Twenties jazz age of Bix Beiderbecke and Louis Armstrong; reigned within the Nineteen Thirties and ’40s swing period along Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington, and Tommy Dorsey; navigated previous the ’40s bebop revolution of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie (who either famous his taking part in) to make attractive and noteworthy chamber jazz within the early 1950s—then, on the height of his powers, retired from acting, prompting admirers ever due to the fact to invite, Why?

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Extra resources for Artie Shaw, King of the Clarinet: His Life and Times

Sample text

Garcia remains a shadowy figure, his story lost to the wastelands of la Zone. Garcia was the composer of “Minch valse,” his sole surviving composition, yet it was a singular masterwork that built his fame as the godfather of a distinguished style of valse musette known as the valse manouche for its Gypsy composers. The melody of Garcia’s “Minch valse” was borne on rippling arpeggios running in ascending melodic lines. The title of this rhapsody, however, had a jocular, base background that was straight off the dirty floors of the dance halls.

In addition, Vacher played the java, a dance that became the pride of musette. Legend held that the java got its name at Le Rat Mort, a grand bal reigning over place Pigalle in Paris’s red-light district. Here, the women were infatuated with the 3/4-time Italian mazurka “Rosina” that they danced in quick, minced steps with their hands planted on their partners’ derrières. ” Paris woke one morning and a new dance had been born. Yet the debut of a new dance was contentious. ” Art or not, the dancers begged for encores, and Vacher hurried to compose fast-paced javas for his fans.

Often, he played solo. Other times, he led a trio of a violin and hurdy-gurdy. ” Bouscatel pumped up the red-velvet-covered airbag with his right arm, blew into the mouthpiece, and the night began. THE MELODY of the bagpipe’s song was soon to be interrupted. By the late 1800s, another wave of immigrants began arriving in Paris—Italians—bringing their own musical instrument, the accordion. This robotic kin of the bagpipes was a complete band in a box, and the Italians played their own traditional songs and light opera airs with a sound that waltzed from sad to sweet and back again.

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