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Jazz, Blues, and Popular Music: Jazz

Searching Jazz in ZSR Library's Catalog

See "Jazz" on the following webpage:

Encyclopedias

New Grove Dictionary of Jazz (in Oxford Music Online, on our “Databases” page).

Bibliographies

These can be searched in the Library's catalog or WorldCat using the following subject terms:

  • Jazz -- Bibliography
  • Jazz -- Bio-bibliography

You can also find them shelved under the call number ML128 J3. (Check both the Reference room and the main stacks (shelves)).

Dictionaries

These can be searched in the Library's catalog or WorldCat using the following subject term:

  • Jazz -- Dictionaries.

You can also find them shelved under the call number ML102 J3. (Check both the Reference room and the main stacks (shelves)).

Biography

Biographical information can be located in the Library's catalog or WorldCat using a number of subject terms:

  • [Name]
  • [Name] -- Interviews
  • [Name] -- Homes and haunts
  • [Name] -- Pictorial works
  • [Name] -- Portraits
  • Jazz musicians
  • Jazz musicians -- Biography
  • Jazz musicians -- [Place] -- Biography
  • Jazz musicians -- [the subdivisions after Name above]
  • Jazz singers
  • Jazz singers -- Biography
  • Jazz singers -- [Place] --Biography
  • Jazz singers -- [the subdivisions after Name above]

 

You'll find both collective and individual biographies. Examples:

Who's Who of Jazz: Storyville to Swing Street.

Jazz Masters of the Forties.

Singing Jazz: the Singers and their Styles.

Jazz Odyssey: the Life of Oscar Peterson.

Black Beauty, White Heat: a Pictorial History of Classic Jazz, 1920-1950.

Books on Jazz History

These can be located in the Library's catalog using the following subject terms:

  • Jazz -- History and criticism
  • Jazz -- [Place] -- History and criticism
  • Jazz -- Analysis, appreciation

You can also find many of them shelved in the call number range ML3505.8 - ML3509.

Recordings and Videos

Databases (streaming audio)

The following can be accessed on our "Databases" page:

Music Online: Smithsonian Global Sound

Music Online: American Music

Database of Recorded American Music (DRAM)

 

Discographies

Numerous discographies have been published tracing the history of recorded jazz, or advising the collector. Find them in the Library's catalog or WorldCat using  the following subject terms:

  • Jazz -- Discography
  • Jazz -- [Place] -- Discography
  • [Name] -- Discography

You can also find them shelved under the call number ML156.4 J3.

Biographies of jazz musicians also typically include a discography.

 

Examples of discographies:

Jazz records, 1897-1942.

Blue Note label: a discography.

Jazz on CD: the essential guide.

Guide to classic recorded jazz.

 

Early recordings

The "player piano," popular in the early twentieth century, used a mechanism that punched holes in a paper roll to record and play back a pianist's performance. Some early jazz pianists were recorded on piano rolls. See the entry "player piano" in Oxford Music Online (available on our “Databases” page).

"Race records" was a term used in the 1920s and 1930s for recordings by African-American musicians, including jazz and blues artists, when the music industry targeted white and black markets separately. See the entry "race record" in Oxford Music Online.

Many of these early recordings have been re-issued on CD.

 

Jazz Labels

Atlantic

Bluebird

Blue Note

Brunswick

Clef

Columbia

Commodore

Fantasy

Gennett

Impulse

Jazzland

Keynote

New Jazz

Odeon

Okeh

Pacific Jazz

Paramount

Prestige

Riverside

Savoy

Vanguard

Varsity

Verve

Victor

 

Anthologies

Look up these series titles in the Library's catalog:

Smithsonian Collection of Classic Jazz.

Big Band Jazz from the Beginnings to the Fifties.

Recorded Anthology of American Music:

  • Jive at five: the style-makers of jazz, 1920s-1940s.
  • Jammin’ for the jackpot: big bands and early territory bands of the 1930’s.
  • Little club jazz: small groups in the 30’s.
  • Jazz in Revolution: Big Bands in the 1940s.
  • Nica’s dream: small jazz groups of the 50’s and early 60’s.
  • Bebop.
  • Mirage: avant-garde and third-stream jazz.

Rare Piano Rolls.

 

Reviews

See "Discographies" and "Websites" on this webpage.

 

Videos

To find these in the Library's catalog:

  • Enter "jazz" as a subject.
  • Use the sidebar to limit the format to "DVD" or "VHS."

Be aware that there are both documentary films about jazz, and fictional films that use jazz as a setting or theme.

Journals

Indexes:

RILM Abstracts of Music Literature (available on our "Databases" page).

 

Journals:

Unless otherwise indicated, these can be accessed on our "Journals" page:

 Annual Review of Jazz Studies 

Jazz Research News (indexed in RILM; articles available through interlibrary loan)

Jazzforschung (indexed in RILM; articles available through interlibrary loan)

Down Beat: Jazz, Blues & Beyond 

Critical Studies in Improvisation

American Music 

Black Music Research Journal 

 

Related Areas

The study of jazz often involves research into the historical, social, economic, and political developments of the time; also, jazz's impact on the other arts.

Some subject headings that relate to the larger context:

  • Jazz -- Social aspects
  • Jazz -- Political aspects
  • Jazz -- Economic aspects
  • Jazz -- Psychological aspects
  • Jazz -- Influence
  • Jazz in art
  • Jazz in literature
  • Jazz in motion pictures
  • Jazz -- Drama   [= plays about jazz]
  • Jazz -- Fiction    [= novels about jazz]
  • African-Americans -- Music

Click here for further resources in related disciplines.

Subject Guide

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Leslie McCall
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