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Monterey Jazz Festival 50th Anniversary Book Released

In commemoration of the Monterey Jazz Festival’s 50th anniversary, music and cultural critics Keith and Kent Zimmerman have assembled a tribute book that captures the festival’s past through images and commentary. Entitled The Art of Jazz: Monterey Jazz Festival/50 Years, the book celebrates the festival’s history with reprints of posters, program covers and rare photographs dating back to the inaugural festival in 1958, as well as comments from the Zimmerman brothers. It contains art by graphic designers such as Eldon Dedini, Judy Anderson, Ron Grauer, Fernando Batista, Harry Briggs and Jeeun Lee, all assembled by creative director/designer Jerry Takigawa. The Art of Jazz also features the work of Earl Newman, who has been designing Monterey Jazz Festival posters since 1963, and a forward by actor and filmmaker Clint Eastwood (pictured, currently featured on the cover of JazzTimes‘ September issue).

The longest consecutively running jazz festival in history, the Monterey Festival kicked off in October 1958 as the brainchild of journalist Ralph Gleason and deejay Jimmy Lyons. The book lists every artist who has ever performed at the festival, and contains photographs of legends including Dave Brubeck, Duke Ellington, Miles Davis, Louis Armstrong and Dizzy Gillespie, whose longstanding affiliation with the MJF dates back to his turn as Master of Ceremonies at the very first festival. There are also pictures of contemporary performers during their MJF shows, such as Pat Metheny, Chick Corea, Christian McBride, Diana Krall, Joshua Redman and many more.

Originally Published