Jazz and Death: Medical Profiles of Jazz Greats (American by Frederick J. Spencer

By Frederick J. Spencer

Whilst a jazz hero dies, rumors, hypothesis, gossip, and legend can litter the true reason for death.

In this ebook, Frederick J. Spencer conducts an inquest on how jazz greats lived and died pursuing their artwork. Forensics, scientific histories, loss of life certificate, and biographies expose the best way many musical virtuosos particularly died.

An crucial reference resource, Jazz and loss of life strives to right incorrect information and set the tale immediately. Reviewing the clinical files of such jazz icons as Scott Joplin, James Reese Europe, Bennie Moten, Tommy Dorsey, Billie vacation, Charlie Parker, Wardell grey, and Ronnie Scott, the publication spans a long time, types, and factors of death.

Divided into illness different types, it covers such health problems as ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease), which killed Charlie Mingus, and tuberculosis, which brought on the deaths of Chick Webb, Charlie Christian, Bubber Miley, Jimmy Blanton, and fat Navarro. It notes the importance of dental illness in affecting a musician's embouchure and livelihood, as occurred with Joe "King" Oliver. A dialogue of paintings Tatum's visible impairment ends up in discoveries within the pathology of what blinded Lennie Tristano.

Heavy consuming, even in the course of Prohibition, was once the norm within the golf equipment of latest Orleans and Kansas urban and within the ballrooms of Chicago and ny. Too frequently, the musical scene demanded that those that play jazz be "jazzed."

After international warfare II, as heroin dependancy turned the hallmark of revolution, proficient bebop artists suffered lengthy absences from the bandstand. Many did reformatory time, and others succumbed to the ravages of "horse."

With Jazz and loss of life, the reasons at the back of the good jazz funerals may possibly now not be misconstrued. Its scientific and morbidly unique procedure creates a useful compendium for jazz enthusiasts and students alike.

Frederick J. Spencer is a professor and affiliate dean emeritus of the college of drugs (Medical university of Virginia) at Virginia Commonwealth college. He has been released within the New England magazine of drugs, magazine of the yank scientific organization, American magazine of Public healthiness, and sleek medication, between different publications.

Reviews:

From Library Journal
In analyzing figures within the historical past of jazz from a scientific viewpoint, Spencer (emeritus, Sch. of drugs, Virginia Commonwealth Univ.) has engaged in a desirable undertaking. What jazz fan can withstand examining extra concerning the heartbreaking complexities of paintings Pepper or the mysterious conditions surrounding the loss of life of Wardell grey, for example? Divided into different types through stipulations equivalent to "tuberculosis," "mental illness," and "eye disease," the publication is going some distance towards making experience of the illnesses, misfortunes, and deaths of jazz musicians. regrettably, Spencer strikes without warning among the anecdotal and the scientific, and whereas he's in a position to offer a professional opinion relating to genuine factors of loss of life and a cautious research of conflicting stories, the ultimate result's usually an educated hypothesis that also leaves a level of ambiguity. additionally, as with every checklist of this type, there are a few curious omissions, even though many lesser-known figures and incidents are lined all through. regardless of its failings, even though, the ebook is exclusive and has drawn jointly a lot new details that would serve students and jazz fanatics for future years. steered for collections with a confirmed curiosity in jazz and jazz stories. Mark Woodhouse, Elmira Coll. Lib., manhattan Poetry

From Booklist
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the longest chapters in Spencer's catalogue of the deaths of jazz notables are these headed "Substance Abuse: Drugs," "Trauma" (including road and air injuries, and fire), and "Substance Abuse: Alcohol." might be strangely, extra pages are curious about "Eye Disease" than "Homicide." Eric Dolphy, it sounds as if ignorant of the diabetes that an post-mortem disclosed, "passed out on level, went right into a coma and died," age 36. He and John Coltrane (41 at his death) "were on [a] healthiness foodstuff drugs and honey" nutrition that they notion "made them a lot better once they played." Tommy Dorsey prefigured Jimi Hendrix's go out via suffocating on his vomit whilst "sleeping capsules inhibited the cough reflex that may have cleared his windpipe." even though "Gerry Mulligan's spouse acknowledged that he died 'from issues as a result of a knee infection,'" the genuine reason was once "hepatic (liver) failure, maybe because of the substance abuse." And so it is going during this significant if morbid source that innocently confirms Frank Zappa's sardonic jest that jazz isn't useless, it simply smells humorous. Mike Tribby

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Extra resources for Jazz and Death: Medical Profiles of Jazz Greats (American Made Music Series)

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A partial explanation for this intense sense of alienation may be found in how this early speaker characterizes reality. It is perhaps his paranoia that makes him emphasize so strongly the dangers that lurk there. Injury and illness are among these but most important is the fact of death, the ultimate assault of nature 40 against the self. The poem “Violent Storm” expresses much of this feeling by talking about the dangers inherent in bad weather. Superficial people may be able to party as the hurricane bears down upon the coast, it is true, But for us, the wide-awake, who tend To believe the worst is always waiting Around the next corner or hiding in the dry, Unsteady branch of a sick tree, debating Whether or not to fell the passerby, It has a sinister air.

Injury and illness are among these but most important is the fact of death, the ultimate assault of nature 40 against the self. The poem “Violent Storm” expresses much of this feeling by talking about the dangers inherent in bad weather. Superficial people may be able to party as the hurricane bears down upon the coast, it is true, But for us, the wide-awake, who tend To believe the worst is always waiting Around the next corner or hiding in the dry, Unsteady branch of a sick tree, debating Whether or not to fell the passerby, It has a sinister air.

In this way, the son tries to collect answers to questions that are so emotional and clouded by memory that they are hard to articulate. By the end of the section, the father becomes so exhausted he can no longer answer the questions; he can only repeat them back in affirmation to his son. The section gains much of its power because it is so reminiscent of Strand himself. The father’s answers which initially joke also ultimately lead to a 42 larger truth, one in which the son has absolute faith.

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