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Italy of jazz by Adriano Mazzoletti

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Category: The Italy of jazz

Adriano Mazzoletti has always accompanied us to discover the world of jazz, with his radio programs, his television stories, his record productions, his books.

With an extraordinary enthusiasm and narrative simplicity, typical of those who have personally lived and shared the story they tell. Now, with "Italy of jazz" Adriano Mazzoletti opens the doors to us on a formidable world, traces the birth and development of Italian jazz and its protagonists with extraordinary images, many unpublished, others forgotten, some taken by well-known photographers.

The Italy of jazz without rhetoric, but with the same emotional participation of a popular narrative, with which anecdotes and adventures of distant characters are told. And here is that be bop, swing, tradition and the avant-garde, the great orchestras, crooners and trumpets appear to us as familiar characters from a fairy tale from the past.

The first jazz adventurers come back to life, unknown or forgotten faces and names, just like many fearless characters of the Italian Risorgimento, true pioneers of a new musical frontier who unknowingly paved a path for subsequent generations.

At first a shy path, then a dirt road, now a modern road with all its branches, a consular way of jazz that has outlined its own identity in a hundred years, moving from the great paths of ragtime and American swing, blending their rhythms, the harmonies and the feeling with the natural Mediterranean melodic pulsation in a completely new and original way, an “Italian way” appreciated all over the world.

Adriano has never been a jazz spectator. In fact, just as in modern quantum theories it is not possible to observe an event without interfering with it by modifying it, so Italian jazz owes it to him for not having observed it passively, but for having lived, changed, supported, disseminated, radicalized it. And now we have proof, all photographic.

The Italian faces of Adriano Mazzoletti's Jazz

This photo album tells in pictures what I have tried to describe in the books. Jazz in Italy - From the origins to the great orchestras and Jazz in Italy - From swing to the Sixties that EDT has published in the last six years.

Not a book accompanied by photographs, but a book in which the text is responsible for accompanying and explaining the photographs. Trying to clarify the historical context in which they were produced and the purposes towards which their use was directed.

Not a book with photos, therefore, but a book of photos, which aims to provide a key to understanding the beginnings of "American" music and later of jazz in Italy before, during and after fascism, through two wars and two postwar period.

Photographs taken, except for a few, by professional photographers and consequently considered official. The book begins with the images of two characters born in Italy at the age of eleven one from the other.

The first, Girolamo La Rocca in 1854, on the eve of the Unification of our country, the second, Giuseppe Alessandra in 1865, when Unity had already been achieved. Both for different reasons belong to the history of jazz.

While La Rocca had the opportunity to witness the birth of this music, his son Dominick made an irreplaceable contribution to that event.

As well as Alessandra and the other migrants who arrived in New Orleans from Sicily and other southern regions. The musicians who made American music known in our country were others.

Those whose photos, partly unpublished or little known, are collected in the section dedicated to the Origins. The journey through the Italian history of jazz begins with the Pioneers.

Three hundred photos of musicians, jazz-bands, orchestra, soloists, some forgotten, others little known, others still known and famous. But all the protagonists of a story that is "told" for the first time through images.

The eight chapters of this "story" The Italy of jazz end in a crucial moment in social and political history and not only in Italy which will be narrated in the third volume "Jazz in Italy - The last forty years" which will be published, again from the EDT, the last tome of the trilogy started in 2004.

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