• While revisiting James Lincoln Collier’s 1989 biography Benny Goodman and the Swing Era, the story of Goodman’s 1962 U.S. State Department tour of the Soviet Union caught my eye…

  • This edition tells the story of Lester Young getting high with Jack Kerouac, and his overall influence on his generation

     

     

  • “Da Capo al Fine” by J. Lee Strickland is the recipient of the 44th Jerry Jazz Musician New Short Fiction Award

  • Jeffrey’s fingers hovered inches above the ivory. His heart pounded. The oak bench creaked as he leaned forward, only the toes of his scuffed leather shoes making contact with the floor. The hand-written notes on the page in front of him bounced up and down with every panting breath.

  • "To Russia, Without Love"
  • Great Encounters #48: Lester Young and Jack Kerouac
  • "Da Capo al Fine" - a story by J. Lee Strickland
  • "Storyville" -- a short story by Matthew Peel
Features » In Memoriam

A writer’s appreciation of Nat Hentoff — by Scott Shachter

I was eighteen when I read Nat Hentoff’s Jazz Is, and it changed my life. I’d always thought good jazz was just the crafting of pretty notes with a smooth feel. I’d never imagined it could be a “cry for justice.” Or a captivating tour through a heart lay bare. The greatest jazz goes even beyond that: the symphony of a soul freshly released and taking flight, nothing less than what Nat calls “spirit-music.”

As readers know, Nat Hentoff was far more than a jazz authority. He was a spectacular writer and a freedom-of-speech icon with no tolerance for hypocrisy. He was a great hero of

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Features » In Memoriam

On Nat Hentoff

I am saddened to read of the passing of journalist Nat Hentoff, who died yesterday at the age of 91. Hentoff’s work was published by the Village Voice for 50 years, and was also frequently found in the New Yorker, the Atlantic Monthly, the Wall Street Journal, and Jazz Times. He was also editor of Downbeat during the mid-1950’s. There are many obituaries available to read about Nat and his career – including Robert McFaddin’s in today’s New York Times.

As I began publishing original content on Jerry Jazz Musician in 1999, I had the privilege of having my site embraced by the three most prominent jazz writers of the time, Gary Giddins, Stanley Crouch, and Nat Hentoff. All three of them got involved in Jerry Jazz Musician in their own way.

Giddins — who I was able to catch up with during a recent trip I took to New York — and I developed an interview series called

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