Lester Young fading away in a hotel room; Charles Mingus storming down the streets of New York on a too-small bicycle; Thelonius Monk creating his own private language on the piano…
In eight poetically charged vignettes, Geoff Dyer skilfully evokes the embattled lives of the players who shaped modern jazz. He draws on photos and anecdotes, but music is the driving force of But Beautiful and Dyer brings it to life in luminescent and wildly metaphoric prose that mirrors the quirks, eccentricity, and brilliance of each musician’s style.
Remarkable...there can be few books on jazz written with such tenderness and care. -- Adam Lively * * Times Literary Supplement * * But Beautiful is just that. A moving and highly original tribute to Black American Music. -- Bryan Ferry As intricate a mixture of biographical essay and make-believe as is likely to be written. * * New York Times * * The only book about jazz that i have recommended to my friends. It is a little gem. -- Keith Jarrett
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