Saturday, March 08, 2008

Milt Hinton's marvelous life

I just finished this morning reading Playing the Changes: Milt Hinton’s Life in Stories and Photographs, by Milt Hinton, David G. Berger & Holly Maxson (Vanderbilt University) and while I still have a more formal review to write wanted to spread the word about this remarkable book. The late Milt Hinton was one of the most venerated jazz musicians. In addition to his bass playing, he also was an accomplished photographer. Some twenty years ago, Hinton and Berger authored The Bass Line which the present volume updates and serves as a pictorial autobiography as it includes family photos and others from the Hinton family collection in addition to over 100 new photos by Hinton that was added to this upgraded addition. And there are phots of everyobe from Coltrane, Ellington, In addition to recounting his days with Cab Calloway or the New York recording studios, he also has several pages discussing his photography, how Keg Johnson convinced him to get a Leica (his first camera was an Argus) and later purchasing a Canon (I believe one with a trigger). There is also a CD of interview segments with the late jazz master and the book’s dimensions are of a coffee table book. This is not a book to casually lug around, rather one to sit back, kick one’s shoes off and savor.

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