This chapter explores the expectations and values jazz musicians, fans and scholars often implicitly hold towards jazz recordings. I will explore the role of recordings in constructing a jazz narrative: in particular, I want to pit the rewards that fans and scholars get from hearing live jazz against those that they gain from collecting jazz recordings. The case study I use is a famous event in jazz history: the Duke Ellington Orchestra’s performance and recording at the third annual Newport Jazz Festival, held in Rhode Island in 1956. The recording was one of the first ‘live’ recordings released by the Columbia record company, and it reveals several issues worthy of further theorisation. In this chapter I will alternate between the chronology of the performance, recording and release, and bigger themes of jazz scholarship brought to light. I will take a short diversion to challenge common perceptions of improvisation, and end with a related contemporary example.
|Title of host publication||New Jazz Conceptions|
|Subtitle of host publication||History, Theory, Practice|
|Editors||Roger Fagge, Nicolas Pillai|
|Number of pages||19|
|ISBN (Print)||9781848936096, 9780367886769|
|Publication status||Published - 15 Dec 2016|