LSM Newswire

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

New from Temple University Press: I Walked With Giants

I Walked with Giants
The Autobiography of Jimmy Heath
Jimmy Heath and Joseph McLaren
foreword by Bill Cosby, introduction by Wynton Marsalis

Publication Date: February 26, 2010
344 pp., 35 halftones, 6 x 9”
Cloth 978-1-4399-0198-4 $35.00
 
A life in music portrayed by an NEA Jazz Master and his legendary friends
"I have long admired Jimmy's passion heard so clearly in his music; he is a soulful musician and a consummate educator. In these pages he gives a new voice to his love of life and music. He once told Dr. Camille Cosby that ‘our history is a mystery,’ so here he pulls back the veil and sets forth a wonderful collection of reminiscences culled from a long life of accumulated wisdom." Nancy Wilson , song stylist 

Composer of more than 100 jazz pieces, three-time Grammy nominee, and performer on more than 125 albums, saxophonist Jimmy Heath has earned a place of honor in the history of jazz. Over his long career, Heath knew many jazz giants, such as Charlie Parker, and played with other innovators, including John Coltrane, Miles Davis, and especially Dizzy Gillespie. Along the way, Heath won both their respect and their friendship.

In I Walk with Giants: The Autobiography of Jimmy Heath (Publication Date: February 26, 2010), the legendary Heath creates an extraordinary “dialogue” with musicians and family members. As in jazz, where improvisation by one performer prompts another to riff on the same theme, I Walked with Giants juxtaposes Heath’s account of his life and career with recollections from jazz giants about life on the road and making music on the world’s stages. His memories of playing with his equally legendary brothers, Percy and Albert (aka “Tootie”), dovetail with their recollections. By turns funny, poignant, and extremely candid, Heath’s story captures the rhythms of a life in jazz.

"Heath puts all of the peaks and valleys of a rigorous professional life in a unique memoir that speaks volumes to the values of discipline, tradition, and perseverance. Heath's story is told in a classic call-and-response manner. . . . A true jazz milestone, this bold account . . . further illuminates the seldom-told story of our creative homegrown music."Publishers Weekly
 
Jimmy Heath , an NEA Jazz Master, is widely recognized as one of the greats in jazz. A saxophonist, composer, arranger, and educator, Heath grew up in Philadelphia with his renowned brothers, Percy, the longtime bassist with the Modern Jazz Quartet, and Albert (“Tootie”), a highly respected drummer. The three formed the Heath Brothers Band in the ’70s. Jimmy Heath directed the Jazz Studies master’s degree program in performance at Queens College (CUNY).

Joseph McLaren is Professor of English at Hofstra University, the author of Langston Hughes: Folk Dramatist in the Protest Tradition, 1921-1943, and editor of several additional titles. 

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