No mean jazz photographer himself--see his Images of Jazz
(1996)--Tanner generously shares space with his peers in this album for which he wrote the historical preface, explaining why jazz photography is an after-1930 development, and selected the pictures. If there are more Tanner photos here than anyone else's, they don't upstage anyone else's, either. This black-and-white gallery is as distinguished for its egalitarianism as a jam session. It is understood, however, that it, like a jam session of real pros, represents an egalitarianism of the elite. The participating lensers include many of the most famous in documentary and commercial photography--the likes of Gjon Mili, William Claxton, Dennis Stock, Frank Wolff, Herman Leonard, Carole Reiff, Val Wilmer, and Jim Marshall--and, of course, the most famous photographer among jazz musicians, bassist Milt Hinton. To a person, they obtained the kind of images that Alfred Wertheimer in Elvis at 21
(2006) calls some of the best possible: pictures of people doing something more important to them than having their picture taken. Ray OlsonCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
About the Author
Lee Tanner has been photographing jazz musicians for nearly half a century. His photographs have appeared in Down Beat, Jazz Times, American Photo
, and Popular Photography
, on the covers of many record albums, and in several books. He lives in Sonora, CA.
Nat Hentoff is a jazz critic, historian, biographer, and columnist for the Village Voice, The Wall Street Journal
, and Jazz Times
. In 2004 he was named one of six NEA Jazz Masters, the first non-musician to win this prestigious award. He lives in New York City.