The History of Jazz
The History of Jazz by Ted Gioia
Oxford University Press 1997 (fully revised edition published 2011)
Winner of the Bay Area Book Reviewers Association
award for best non-fiction book of the year.
Named in The Washington Post, by Pulitzer Prize Winner
Jonathan Yardley as one of the 20 best books of the year.
New York Times Notable Book of the Year.
“Possibly the best survey to date.”
Ann Douglas in The New York Times
“If you are looking for an introduction to jazz, this is it. If you
know and love jazz well, this is your vade mecum. Me, I expect
to be reading around in it for the rest of my life . . . [It is] the
definitive work: encyclopedic, discriminating, provocative,
perceptive and eminently readable. With its publication, it
can no longer be said that the literature of jazz falls far
short of the music itself.”
Jonathan Yardley in The Washington Post
“In The History of Jazz, Gioia has written an authoritative work
of research that does not spare the poetic power of words.”
James Sullivan in The San Francisco Chronicle
"Gioia's History stands a good chance of becoming the
standard guide for general readers and academics. . . .
Gioia coherently and eruditely compacts into 400-odd pages
the work of 30 volumes. Impressive with epic sweep, he
details divinely too.”
Greg Tate in The Village Voice
“Ted Gioia’s The History of Jazz is the work of a noted
jazz scholar and performer, but is just as plainly aimed at
a general audience. . . . Anyone looking for a balanced,
well-written popular history of jazz will certainly find it both
readable and reliable . . . nor should more experienced
readers expect to come away empty-handed.”
Terry Teachout in The Wall Street Journal
"[Gioia] is one of the outstanding music historians in America
. . . . The History of Jazz is as near definitive as a one-volume
work can be."
The Dallas Morning News
“This is the book you need if you require a grasp of the
music’s history, and it is a friendly companion for those
who have an overview but will always welcome more details . . .
It is the best history in print.”
John Clare in The Australian’s Review of Books
“Powerful and dynamic . . . essential reading for the serious
Dr. Lee Bash in Jazz Educator’s Journal
“If you wanted to introduce someone to jazz with a single book,
this would be a good choice.”