Books on music - What are you currently reading?

Shamelessly copying the idea of the What are you currently listening to? thread here.

Are you reading anything music-related at the moment? Or have you read something interesting/boring/surprising before? We could discuss these books/articles here.

One of the most important books of this kind for me is Miles Davis’ autobiography called, funnily enough, Miles: The Autobiography. I first read it in 2009 or 2010 in Hungarian and I was floored, partly because the translation of the various profanities was quite creative. Then I bought and read the original last year. Somehow the whole book had a different tone in English, more serious, and I was happy to find that I liked it the second time around, too.

There are are some hilarious stories, like Miles trying to dissuade Coltrane from getting false teeth in the front, fearing for his sound. Of course, Trane got the false teeth made, and his sound wasn’t hurt by them.

Having read other accounts about Miles, I’m not sure I’d like to be in the same room with him (even if he were close to 100 years by now), but it would be a tremendous privilege.

Currently, I’m reading Notes and Tones: Musician-to-Musician Interviews by the drummer Arthur Taylor. It’s a collection of interviews with about two dozen jazz musicians, and it was among the first projects of its kind (a musician interviewing his peers). Here, the people interviewed are free to speak their minds, so it feels as if I was part of the discussion.

There are some recurring questions reflecting the era, like opinions on the situation of black people in America, attitudes towards “free” playing, amplified instruments, etc. The book makes me feel as if I can take a look “behind the scenes” and get to know a bit more about what these people needed to succeed in their profession. I recommend it to anyone interested in musicians talking about themselves and their music more freely than in interviews made by non-musicians.

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Good idea…A few.

Jeff Tweedy - How to write one song
John Fegan - Rough Red
Guzzy Martin - Don’t shoot! I"m the guitar man

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That Miles Davis autobiography sounds interesting. I’ve recently got into audiobooks so I’ve got Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young - The Wild, Definitive Saga of Rock’s Greatest Supergroup; Born to Run (Springsteen); and a credit I’m going to use to get Life (Keef). My drive to work isn’t long enough now! I’m also reading a book Justin suggested on Instagram, The Devil’s Music, a History of the Blues. I’m enjoying all of them quite a lot.

Nothing going at the moment. Most recently read books about Deep Purple, Slash and Duff.

The read I’d recommend, after Ivan recommended it, is Zen Guitar by Philip Toshio Sudo.

And this morning I stumbled over this in a reply to a reply on my current ‘What are you learning’ topic, and was wondering about possibly sharing in a Just chatting Topic, when I spotted this one. So here’s a paper all about Deliberate Practice, what I might dub ‘the infinite pursuit of mastery’.

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Thanks for pointing out this paper. It’s helped me to pin-point some areas of Deliberate Practice that I need to concentrate on. I’m having trouble with consistently hitting the F chord but I can see now that my approach to learning it needs to be more Deliberate and focused.
Thanks again, very useful.

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