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Distinguished SOTW Member/Bass Sax Boss
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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I'm surprised that no one on SOTW has mentioned the new book about the life of Adrian Rollini, the great bass saxophone player.

Adrian and Sydney Bechet were arguably the first jazz saxophone players, but Rollini played all kinds of music. He was one of the most recorded sax players of the 1920s.

Even if you don't care about Adrian Rollini himself, the book is full of interesting information about, Jimmy Dorsey, Frank Trumbauer, and musicians who became big names in the swing era.

The book is over 500 pages long, and there is extensive commentary about nearly every recording Rollini made. Now that record collectors have posted so many recordings on Youtube, it's possible to listen to the recordings mentioned in the book
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2012
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Nice! I'll have to pick this up. I JUST purchased my own copy of the Evans/Kiner book on Tram.

How much of the 500 pages are dedicated to the discography?
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Bass Sax Boss
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Nice! I'll have to pick this up. I JUST purchased my own copy of the Evans/Kiner book on Tram.

How much of the 500 pages are dedicated to the discography?
The entire book is pretty much a discography. The author goes through Rollini's career gig by gig and record by record. The commentary helps the reader to pick what he/she wants to hear on youtube. There is a separate discography of Rollini recordings issued on CD.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2012
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Interesting. Still narrative-based, but with more of an integrated discography?

I keep my phone at my side when I read biographies so I can pull up specific recordings as I go. Did that as I was reading about the first time a 16 year-old Lester Young heard Tram on a 78.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Sax Historian
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I'm really enjoying it but it is densely factual and slow going for that reason. My favorite parts are the reminiscences from Adrian's friends and colleagues - they illuminate him and his music in a way that is second only to actually hearing him. This also is the best historical account yet of the California Ramblers, the band Adrian helped make into one of the great outfits of the '20s.

A few things are left out, and some omissions are surprising. Adrian's first bass sax recording is described in good detail - and then the title is omitted so you have no hope of tracking it down. There is also very little information surviving about what he was doing in much of 1931 and '32, when the music business slowed to a crawl.

There is a wealth of previously unseen pictures, all run small (after all, it's a book, not the internets).
 

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Does this book have any detailed analysis of his playing, i.e., how his lines are constructed? The synopsis says it includes a "blow-by-blow of each session, along with his analysis of the playing."

Anybody finished with their copy and want to sell it?
 
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