PAUL SWINTON (ed)
FROG JAZZ AND BLUES ANNUAL VOL 3 (Book & free CD)
The third in a mouth-watering series that brings together specially commissioned articles and rare period photographs, advertising artwork and other visual ephemera to tell the tale of the book's sub title - The Musicians, The Records & The Music Of The 78 Era.
And, just like the first and second editions (BK026 and BK042 if you are playing catch-up), this makes a sizeable contribution to our understanding and enjoyment of the period. Within 176 glossy pages, there are over 30 separate articles of interest, written by well-known and not-so-well known blues and jazz scholars, enthusiasts and record label owners including Bob Groom, Gayle Dean Wardlow, Bruce Bastin, Alex Van der Tuuk, Max Haymes, Marshall Wyatt and more (even Paul Swinton is somehow able to take time out from editing the whole shebang by contributing his own article on Winston Holmes). And the subject areas tackled are dizzyingly diverse, ranging from appreciations of particular artists (Cow Cow Davenport, Roberta Dudley, Big Bill Broonzy, Ruth Willis, Thunder Smith, Duke Ellington & The Washingtonians, Freddie Keppard, etc), influential record company executives and entrepreneurs, specific label releases and particular events and incidents otherwise lost to history.
And if this ain't enough to keep you going, you also get a fantastic 25 track CD thrown in - featuring rare and little- known sides from artists featured in the book and many more, including Moanin' Bernice Edwards, Louis Armstrong, Lee Collins, South Memphis Jug Band, Julia Lee, Charlie Burse, Leadbelly and more.
I have only had this a few days and I'm finding it hard to leave alone. What better recommendation can I offer?.
Review Date: October 2013