Saturday, February 07, 2009

Jazz on A Saturday Night

Dillon, Leo and Diane. 2007. Jazz on a Saturday Night. Blue Sky Press.

A picture book celebrating some of jazz's greatest legends: Miles Davis, Max Roach, Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, Thelonious Monk, Stanley Clarke, and Ella Fitzgerald. The authors imagined these legends all performing together on stage on a Saturday night...and the crowd finding themselves 'in heaven' with the splendor of it all.

The book has a CD accompanying it. Not full of songs by the original artists, but containing an original song celebrating the book. It also contains a track--nearly thirteen minutes in length that is instructional in nature, meant to serve as an introduction to the genre. Specifically it seeks to introduce each instrument to the reader.

I don't know what it is about this book. I think it is probably me. But I wasn't particularly thrilled--excited--about the book or the CD. Both were okay. (Though I found the CD to be a bit dry and boring. I could see myself falling asleep listening to it if it was 'required' either in or out of class.) The book lacked some of the rhythm that would make it sizzle and pop off the page. For a book about jazz, it just lacked some of the emotions that I've come to expect. (Jazz can be many things--fast, slow, happy, sad, jumping, thumping, soulful, melodic--but it shouldn't be boring.)

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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