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Monk's MusicThelonious Monk and Jazz History in the Making$
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Gabriel Solis

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780520252004

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520252004.001.0001

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Defining a Genre

Defining a Genre

Monk and the Struggle to Authenticate Jazz at the End of the Twentieth Century

(p.111) FIVE Defining a Genre
Monk's Music

Gabriel Solis

University of California Press

This chapter deals with the connections between various approaches to Monk's legacy, which, though distinctive in their own right, nonetheless approach a common goal, constructing Monk as a key figure in the history of a jazz mainstream, and as a significant predecessor of “inside” players today. It focuses on the creation of a mainstream, “classicizing” understanding of Monk's place in history and, furthermore, looks at Monk as the object of institutional jazz culture. The analyses consider the building of a jazz canon in general, and how scholars and jazz institutions such as the Thelonious Monk Institute, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and the Smithsonian Institution's jazz program have been involved with this process. Finally, the chapter describes three different instances of “mainstream,” “inside” performances of Monk's music.

Keywords:   Monk's legacy, classicizing, jazz culture, mainstream, jazz institutions

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