The definitive account of Louis Armstrong - his life and legacy - during the most creative period of his career. Nearly 100 years after bursting onto Chicago’s music scene under the tutelage of Joe ´´King´´ Oliver, Louis Armstrong is recognized as one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. A trumpet virtuoso, seductive crooner, and consummate entertainer, Armstrong laid the foundation for the future of jazz with his stylistic innovations, but his story would be incomplete without examining how he struggled in a society seething with brutally racist ideologies, laws, and practices. Thomas Brothers picks up where he left off with the acclaimed Louis Armstrong´s New Orleans, following the story of the great jazz musician into his most creatively fertile years in the 1920s and early 1930s, when Armstrong created not one but two modern musical styles. Brothers wields his own tremendous skill in making the connections between history and music accessible to everyone as Armstrong shucks and jives. Through Brothers´s expert ears and eyes we meet an Armstrong whose quickness and sureness, so evident in his performances, served him well in his encounters with racism while his music soared across the airwaves into homes all over America. Louis Armstrong, Master of Modernism blends cultural history, musical scholarship, and personal accounts from Armstrong´s contemporaries to reveal his enduring contributions to jazz and popular music at a time when he and his bandmates couldn’t count on food or even a friendly face on their travels across the country. Thomas Brothers combines an intimate knowledge of Armstrong´s life with the boldness to examine his place in such a racially charged landscape. In vivid prose, Brothers illuminates the life and work of the man many consider to be the greatest American musician of the 20th century. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Andy Caploe. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/adbl/017893/bk_adbl_017893_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Praised for their riveting, ingenious plot twists, John Lawton´s series of espionage thrillers featuring Chief Inspector Frederick Troy of Scotland Yard have an uncanny ability to place readers in the thick of history. Now an old flame has returned to Troy´s life: Kitty Stilton, wife of an American presidential hopeful. Private eye Joey Rork has been hired to make sure Kitty´s amorous liaisons with a rat pack crooner don´t ruin her husband´s political career. But he also wants to know why Kitty has been spotted with Danny Ryan, whose twin brothers, in addition to owning one of London´s hottest jazz clubs, are said to have inherited the crime empire of fallen mobster Alf Marx. Before Rork can find out, he meets a gruesome end. And he isn´t the only one: bodies have started turning up around London, dismembered in the same bizarre and horrifying way. Is it possible that the blood trail leads back to Troy´s own police force and into Troy´s own forgotten past? This compulsively listenable thriller finds one of our most able storytellers at the height of his game. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Lewis Hancock. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/blak/011510/bk_blak_011510_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Etta James, the legendary jazz, gospel, rhythm & blues, and soul singer, was perfectly positioned to reign as the supreme artist in the emerging soul genre of the ´40s and ´50s in America. No one ever doubted her talent, the highly distinctive and versatile nature of her voice, or her drive to succeed, and yet, she has been ´´woefully overlooked´´ in the history of indigenous rock and blues music in the United States. She is famous and recognized for several iconic hits with which she is eternally associated, such as ´´I´d Rather Go Blind´´ and ´´At Last´´, but her place in the pantheon of great soul artists is unsteady and not always instantly recognizable by those outside of a knowledgeable group of devotees. For the rest of soul music´s listeners, mention of her name will result in a hasty inclusion into the inner circle of leading artists, as though James had been momentarily forgotten. Once the object of focus, however, she is revered as one of the titans of the genre, and those who had allowed her to slip from their minds are immediately reawakened to her powerful vocal and interpretive gifts. Such a vague position within the history of the form is partly due to a difficulty James experienced in crossing over to the white audience when others of the same genre were succeeding brilliantly at garnering a new, mixed race fan base. Further, her own abilities may have contributed to the phenomenon; Etta James excelled at almost everything she touched, from gospel and blues, to soul and pop. She could wound the listener with a ballad yet in the same evening ´´rock a house´´. In her various vocal incarnations, she triumphed as ´´a rhythm and blues belter, a blues crooner, and a rock-and-roll screamer´´ who could tailor her voice and her stage persona to seduce or abuse the listener. James´ larger than life and highly forceful personality may have had a downside as well, as she searched for cross-over acceptance by doing everything that her colleag 1. Language: English. Narrator: Alex L. Vincent. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/035622/bk_acx0_035622_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.