Stars of Jazz

A Complete History of the Innovative Television Series, 1956–1958


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SKU: 9781476677705 Categories: , , Tags: ,

About the Book

Imagine an educational television series featuring America’s greatest jazz artists in performance, airing every week from 1956 to 1958 on KABC, Los Angeles.
Stars of Jazz was hosted by Bobby Troup, the songwriter, pianist and vocalist. Each show provided information about the performance that heightened viewers’ appreciation. The series garnered praise from critics and numerous awards including an Emmy from the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. A landmark series visually, too, it presented many television firsts including experimental films by designers Charles and Ray Eames.
All 130 shows were filmed as kinescopes. Surviving films were donated to the UCLA Film & Television Archive, where 16 shows have been restored; 29 additional shows are in the collection. The remaining 85 kinescopes were long ago discarded.
This first full documentation of Stars of Jazz identifies every musician, vocalist, and guest who appeared on the series and lists every song performed on the series along with composer and lyricist credits. More than 100 photographs include images from many of the lost episodes.

About the Author(s)

James A. Harrod is a member of the Association for Recorded Sound Collections, the Jazz Journalists Association, and the Los Angeles Jazz Institute. He lives in Laguna Beach, California.

Bibliographic Details

James A. Harrod
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 235
Bibliographic Info: 114 photos, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2020
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7770-5
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3779-2
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments viii

Preface 1

Introduction 3

Abbreviations 8

1: Ray Avery and Stars of Jazz 9

2: Early Spring 1956 14

3: 1956 20

4: 1957 56

5: 1958 110

Coda 170

Appendix 1: Discography 179

Appendix 2: Filmography 194

Chapter Notes 197

Bibliography 203

Index 205

Book Reviews & Awards

• “A highly readable, well-organized and informative book that covers the story of this important history of jazz presented on television. …superb”—New Jersey Jazz Society

• “A super book on the show’s evolution—Bobby Troup and New Stars of Jazz

• “Fascinating…reveals a compelling treasure trove of totally new material”—Jazz Journal

• “A super book”—JazzWax

• “Highly readable, well-organized and informative. Harrod provides a lot of supplemental information about the performers and the music being presented, adding some historical perspective to the proceedings. …superb”—New Jersey Jazz Society

• “An excellent and elaborate jazz research document and important catalog of a lost music show that finally receives long overdue attention.”—