Blues For Bird

A Charlie Parker Bio

Martin Gray’s epic biographical poem chronicles the life of one of the twentieth century’s most pivotal musical figures, from his humble beginnings in Kansas City through his pioneering of the breakthrough musical form of bebop to his early tragic death in the Park Avenue apartment of a European countess. Writing in iambic trimeters and syncopated hexameters, Gray dances nimbly along in a way that echoes Bird’s blazing, fast-fingered solos. Gray’s use of the poetic form reflects the rhythms of jazz and the beat that lies at the heart of bebop. Blues for Bird is like a piece of jazz itself: exciting, innovative, and constantly surprising. This book not only functions as a primer on Bird, but as an introduction to the musical nature of jazz.

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