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You Just Fight for Your Life: The Story of Lester Young

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You Just Fight for Your Life

The Story of Lester Young

By Frank Buchmann-Moller, Lewis Porter (Foreword by)

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Format: Hardcover, 298 pages
Other Information: black & white illustrations
Published In: United States, 22 January 1990
"A Danish musician here presents the most accurate, comprehensive work on a major figure in American jazz: Lester Willis Young (1909-1959), better known as Pres' or Prez, ' from the nickname President' given to him by Billie Holiday. Based on interviews with Young's colleagues and friends, and often presenting his own vulgar scatological words, the book faithfully chronicles the ups and downs of his life and career. Despite his alcoholism, drug addiction, syphillis, epilepsy, and emotional disturbances, Young became the outstanding tenor saxophonist of his time and a dominant, profound influence on the development of bop and progressive (cool') jazz in the 1940s. His solos with the bands of Fletcher Henderson and Count Basie and his collaboration with Holiday are recalled in this outstanding biography." Publishers Weekly "[This is] the big, warm book about Lester Young that swing lovers have been waiting for, written by a Danish jazz musician. This is a rich authentic life of one of the three greatest tenor players who ever lived, much of it told in vivid quotation from eyewitnesses." Kirkus "this is the first thoroughgoing biography of one of America's greatest musicians; its fascination for at least jazz aficionados is magnetic....Along with Porter's magisterial work of musical analysis, Lester Young, this is the book to have on the most influential jazzman between Armstrong and Parker." Booklist "A fascinating and invaluable compilation of raw material...a straightforward, accurate narrative." The New York Times By far the most comprehensive work available on theextraordinary Lester Young, You Just Fight For Your Life is the jazz enthusiast's dream come true.

Table of Contents

Foreword by Lewis Porter Preface Childhood and Adolescence (1909-1928) On His Own Two Feet (1928-1933) The Kansas City Years (1933-1936) With Count Basie (1936-1940) The War Years (1941-1944) Private 39729502 Young (1944-1945) Busy Years as Bandleader and Soloist (1946-1955) The Last Years (1956-1959) Appendixes Index

Promotional Information

[This] is the big, warm book about Lester Young that swing lovers have been waiting for... Matchless, four star satisfaction. Kirkus

About the Author

FRANK BUCHMANN-MOLLER is a Danish Jazz Musician who appears regularly with his own quartet as well as other groups. A Librarian at Odense University, he has received research grants from the Danish Research Council for the Humanities, the Danish Music Council, and the Funan Association of Jazz Musicians.


"In the biography You Just Fight For Your Life Danish author Frank Buchmann-Moller presents a comprehensive look at the late tenor saxophonist Lester Young--from his contributions to the world of jazz to his personal problems with drink and drugs. Using in-depth interviews with colleagues and family members--as well as colorful quotes from the saxman himself--the author examines the importance of Young's career from his work with Count Basie and Billie Holiday to his pioneering influence upon not only the cool jazz' style of the '50s, but also such contemporaries as Charie Parker, Miles Davis, and John Coltrane. . . . Incidentally, a companion volume ("You Got To Be Original Man? The Music of Lester Young") that chronologically details Young's recording sessions is also available from the publishers."-Radio & Records

EAN: 9780275932657
ISBN: 0275932656
Publisher: Praeger Publishers Inc
Dimensions: 24.38 x 16.41 x 2.92 centimetres (0.61 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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