Synopses & Reviews
Modern jazz and rock 'n' roll, both of which were once identified with youthful insurrection, have reached middle age. So have many longtime listeners -including Francis Davis. Now, in these thirty-one articles, the revered jazz critic considers music young and old, examining performers from Frank Sinatra and Billie Holiday to Ornette Coleman and Sun Ra. But what makes this Davis's most surprising book is the inclusion of such pop icons as Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, Burt Bacharach, and Lou Reed. Using himself as an example, Davis pinpoints our collective longing for a time when we (and our music) were younger-and more inclined to take risks. Lively, opinionated, gracefully written, and often very funny, Like Young is a book for those who have long savored Davis's writing, as well as for those just now discovering him.
Francis Davis is one of this nation's savviest and most admired music and cultural critics. In this collection of essays he observes the modern jazz and pop that have reached middle age at the same moment as many of their listeners, including the author. Moving through the scales from Frank Sinatra and Billie Holiday to Ornette Coleman and Sun Ra, he comments on music both old and new, on stage and screen. In addition to taking the pulse of jazz at the millennium, he offers fresh insights on pop icons like Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, Burt Bacharach, and Brian Wilson. He also goes beyond character sketch and critical script to weave in fragments of his own life, making this the most personal of his collections. Like Young will resonate both with those who have spent two decades reading Davis and those who are discovering him today.
The latest collection of essays by peerless music and culture writer Francis Davis, who "has long combined Gary Giddins's musical acuity with Whitney Balliett's literary flair"-Boston Phoenix
About the Author
Francis Davis is a contributing editor of the Atlantic Monthly and writes regularly for the New York Times and the New Yorker. He is the author of the acclaimed books Outcats and History of the Blues and a biography of John Coltrane (Knopf). He lives in Philadelphia.