Twelve Lives in Jazz                              A Pictorial History of Jazz
Jazz Masters of the Twenties                 Jazz Masters of the Thirties
The Reluctant Art                                  Jam Session, An Anthology of Jazz
The Jazz Tradition                                 The Jazz Makers
The Art of Jazz                                      The Making of Jazz: A Comprehensive History
Jazzmen                                                 Voices of the Jazz Age
Frontiers of Jazz                                     We Called It Music
Bunny Berigan, Elusive Legend of Jazz       Waiting for Dizzy
My Life in Jazz                                       Sylvester Ahola, The Gloucester Gabriel
The Stardust Road                                 Jelly Roll, Bix, and Hoagy
Sometimes I Wonder                              Tram, The Frank Trumbauer Story
Lost Chords                                            Call Me Lucky
Liners in Records

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  • "Jelly Roll, Bix, and Hoagy. Gennett Studios and the Birth of Recorded Jazz"by Rick Kennedy, Indiana University Press, Bloomington, 1994. Description: 233 pages, twenty one illustrations, notes, and bibliography. This book is an exhaustive,well-documented account of the Gennett Recording Company. The author manages to make the history of this relatively obscure (except among jazz fans and collectors) recording company fascinating. There is an extensive discussion of Bix, of the Wolverines and their recordings, and of the friendship between Bix and Hoagy. The author provides an in-depth discussion regarding the speculation that Bix might have been the cornetist in Marion McKay's recording of Doo Wacka Doo (It was probably Leroy Morris). The detailed account of the lawsuit brought by the Victor Company against the Starr Piano Company (the parent organization of the Gennett Recording Company) is instructive and fascinating.
  • "Tram, The Frank Trumbauer Story" by Philip R. Evans and Larry F. Kiner, with William Trumbauer, The Scarecrow Press, Inc., Metuchen, N. J., 1994. Description: 821 pages plus xix, twenty four photographs, comprehensive discography, chronology, song title index. This book is number 18 in the Studies in Jazz series from the Institute of Jazz Studies, Rutgers -The State University of New Jersey. The biography covers the first 274 pages. It is very detailed and includes memos written in 1953 by Tram as he planned an autobiography. Tram's comments, taken from his 1928 diary and from pages of three other diaries, are included in the chronology section. The discography is extremely detailed and includes the original issues, reissues, LP albums and CD's. There are numerous references to Bix Beiderbecke. In fact, the Bix and Tram combination was so important, that this book is required reading for anyone who has more than a passing interest in Bix.
  • "Sylvester Ahola, The Gloucester Gabriel" by Dick Hill, The Scarecrow Press, Inc., Metuchen, N. J., 1993. Description: 220 pages plus xi, thirteen photographs, discography, bibliography and song index. This book is number 14 in the Studies in Jazz series from the Institute of Jazz Studies, Rutgers -The State University of New Jersey. The author had free access to the files, letters and diaries of Saima and Sylvester Ahola. Extracts from the diaries are included in the biography section. There are several interesting references to Bix.
  • "Lost Chords, White Musicians and Their Contribution to Jazz, 1915-1945" by Richard M. Sudhalter,Oxford University Press, New York, 1999. Description: 890 pages, thirty seven photographs, index of names, index of musical titles, bibliographic notes. This massive and well-documented work contains a lot of material about Bix and related musicians, such as Jean Goldkette, Frank Trumbauer, Miff Mole, Adrian Rollini, Bud Freeman, Eddie Lang, and the Dorsey brothers. From a first reading, the chapter "Bix Beiderbecke and Some of His Friends" is an excellent analysis of Bix's seminal contributions to the jazz idiom. Several of Bix's solos are analyzed in detail and there is an interesting attempt at understanding Bix's decline and eventual self-destruction through alcoholism. The author provides insights and an analysis of Bix's tragedy not found in previous treatments.

  •     A thorough, thoughtful and very positive review of "Lost Chords" is provided by Phillip D. Atteberry, Professor of Music at the University of Pittsburgh, in the April 1999 issue of The Mississippi Rag. Mr. Atteberry refers to Richard Sudhalter's treatment of Bix : "Of Bix Beiderbecke, Sudhalter is brief and eloquent, and I am impressed. Sudhalter co-wrote an excellent biography of Beiderbecke, Bix: Man and Legend, but often writers who have done such extensive research on a topic find it difficult to distill their knowledge into a few pages. Sudhalter briefly and gracefully argues that Beiderbecke, even more than Armstrong, is a phenomenon unto himself, springing from no particular style or school and influencing others less than we have imagined. Sudhalter argues that even though many musicians borrowed Bix's phrases, few pierced through to the brooding spirit beneath them." Finally, I quote the last two paragraphs from the review: " It is not possible, in a single review, to touch upon all the excellences of this book. Suffice to say that the chapters on Artie Shaw, Red Norvo and Mildred Bailey, Pee Wee Russell and Jack Teagarden are as intelligent and insightful as anything I've read on the topic. Most books embellish or refine an existing way of thinking. Only a few books prompt us to think in fundamentally new ways, to see a subject through an entirely new lense. Lost Chords is one of those rare books. It takes a large investment of time, but it's worth it. In most repects, this is a book that jazz lovers will never finish but will keep returning to as their listening trails expand."
        A lengthy and insightful review of the book appeared in the February 1999 issue of  the Atlantic Monthly. The review is available on line.   Another comprehensive review is available here.

        Addendum 12/29/00. Richard M. Sudhalter is the recipient of one of the 33rd Annual Ascap-Deems Taylor Awards for the year 2000. The ASCAP-Deems Taylor Awards are presented in honor of Deems Taylor, a distinguished composer, music critic, editor, and radio commentator who served as ASCAP's (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) President from 1942-1948. The special citation was bestowed upon Richard Sudhalter for his book "Lost Chords: White Musicians and Their Contribution to Jazz. 1915-1945", Oxford University Press, 1999.  The presenter of the award singled out "breadth and scope of research" as well as "elegance of writing style" in the award ceremonies.
       "Lost Chords" was also selected by the New York Times as one of the "Notable Books of the Year" in the non-fiction category at the end of 1999. Return to the top Return to home pageReturn to Detailed Table of Contents


    A Brief Biography  Articles in Magazines The Bix Beiderbecke Memorial Society
    Bix's Musical Genius Video Tapes  Items of Special Interest
    Biographies Audio Tapes Information of Related Interest
    Chapters in Books Museums A Stamp for Bix in 2003
    Scholarly Dissertations Miscellaneous Links to Related Sites
    Obituaries Readers' Queries and Remarks Celebration of Bix's Musical Legacy

    The Original 78's
    Analysis of Some Recordings: Is It Bix or Not ?
    Complete Compilations of Bix's Recordings
    Tributes to Bix
    Miscellaneous Recordings Related to Bix
    In A Mist