On Bird

By Nat Hentoff From Jazz Is, 1976 There have been a number of instances in jazz history of the incandescent hero-as-world-overturning-improviser eventually plunging, like Icarus, into burnt-out extinction. Bix Beiderbecke, Bunny Berigan, Fats Navarro, and, way back,...

Frank Sinatra Jr. Is Worth Six Buddy Grecos

By Tom Junod GQ, January 1994 He is a forty-nine-year-old man whose father has just yelled at him. He has worked hard for his father tonight, but something went wrong, he must have made a mistake, and now he is going to his room. He will stay there all night, if he...

Louis

By Nat Hentoff From Jazz Is, 1976 Louis Armstrong, summoned by King Oliver, came up to Chicago in the summer of 1922, Buster Bailey reports that “Louis upset Chicago. All the musicians came to hear Louis. What made Louis upset Chicago so? His execution, for one thing,...