Category Archives: Jazz

Ornette Coleman (1930-2015), Frank O’Hara, Amiri Baraka

This morning brought the sad news that the groundbreaking jazz musician Ornette Coleman has passed away at 85.  There will surely be many obituaries and testimonials to Coleman’s importance and legacy, but I wanted to just note some the important points of … Continue reading

Posted in Abstract Expressionism, Alfred Leslie, Amiri Baraka (LeRoi Jones), Frank O'Hara, Jackson Pollock, Jazz, Music, Ornette Coleman

A Real Mad, “All-American” Combination: LeRoi Jones/Amiri Baraka’s Salon

Last week, on a trip to the Czech Republic, I had the pleasure of meeting Josef Jařab , one of the most important Czech scholars of American literature.  Jařab is a leading Czech authority on American poetry, and he has translated and written … Continue reading

Posted in Abstract Expressionism, Allen Ginsberg, Amiri Baraka (LeRoi Jones), Beats, Frank O'Hara, Franz Kline, Jack Kerouac, Jazz, John Ashbery, Kenneth Koch, Larry Rivers, Music, Visual Art

Baraka’s “Blues People” at 50 and the “New American Poetry”

The other day, NPR posted a good piece marking the 50th anniversary of Blues People, the landmark book on African-American music, from blues to jazz, written in 1963 by Amiri Baraka (then LeRoi Jones). The piece, by Eugene Holley, Jr., discusses … Continue reading

Posted in Amiri Baraka (LeRoi Jones), Beats, Jazz, Music