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Spirits Rejoice!: Jazz and American Religion (Inglés) Tapa dura – 21 may 2015


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Críticas

[A] fascinating look into the religious and spiritual elements of the jazz life, a subject long talked about but until now with little clarity. Bivins is uniquely qualified to speak about jazz and its place in the spiritual life of America. To those who have wondered how a music can be so involving and meaningful to its musicians and fans, this book provides an answer. (John Szwed, author of Space is the Place: The Lives and Times of Sun Ra)

[A] well-researched, meticulously annotated achievement. Jason Bivins elucidates the connection of jazz improvised music and religion and spirituality in a comprehensive way. Every manifestation of this connection in this musical art form is presented here. The book is more than that. It is-like William James's The Varieties of Religious Experience-a book of philosophy, which causes the reader to understand and feel, reaching the spiritual center within. (Connie Crothers, Improvising pianist, www.conniecrothers.net)

Jason Bivins has produced an intellectual tour de force, a prodigious work of far-flung research, impassioned analysis, and incandescent prose. By juxtaposing religion and jazz, Bivins challenges us to get our minds around two forms of social practice that continually press against and escape the bonds of language. This is an ecstatic book in every sense of the word. (David W. Stowe, author of How Sweet the Sound: Music in the Spiritual Lives of Americans)

Reseña del editor

Spirits Rejoice! takes its name from a record by jazz saxophonist of the mid-1960s, Albert Ayler―later used, with an exclamation point added, by Louis Moholo-Moholo―and is appropriated in Jason Bivins's book to express the overlap of religion and jazz music through history. Bivins explore themes that have resounded throughout the musical genre that are also integral to the practice of religions in the United States.

Much writing about jazz falls into one of three categories: glorified record reviews or discographies; impressionistic descriptions of the actual sounds and dense musicological analyses; or contextualizing it within institutions or extant narratives that are easier to analyze. Using religious studies as a point of comparison Bivins seeks to go beyond these approaches. Instead, he takes to heart a commonly invoked characteristic of jazz, and improvises on the standard questions and stories that might be told. Rather than producing a history or a series of biographical entries, Spirits Rejoice! will generate a collection of themes, pursuits, reoccurring foci, and interpretations. When ranging across the cultural history of American jazz, these themes emerge not just in the musicians' own words (in interviews, liner notes, or journals) but also from the bandstand, audience reception, and critical interrogation. Bivins looks at themes such as musical creativity as related to specific religious traditions, jazz as a form of ritual and healing, and jazz cosmologies and metaphysics, drawing conclusions that explore how "the sound of spirits rejoicing" challenges not only prevailing understandings of race and music, but also the way we think about "religion."

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