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The Swing Book
by Degen Pener

The Swing Book (Little, Brown & Company) should be required reading for anyone who enjoys classic big band or neo-swing music, anyone who has ever taken a class in Lindy Hop, or anyone who has ever seen that Gap commercial and wondered what the whole thing was all about. It should also be required reading for anyone majoring in history, sociology, music or fine arts. Or anyone who ever wanted to major in those subjects. Hell, even if you're not remotely interested in swing, read this book, because you will be.

This comprehensive guide covers everything from the history of jazz and the origins of the Lindy Hop to the roots of the swing renaissance. There are biographies of greats like Basie, Ellington, Jordan, and Prima, as well as neo-swing artists cuch as Royal Crown Revue, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, The Squirrel Nut Zippers, and the Brian Setzer Orchestra. there's an entire chapter on learning to dance, complete with illustrations of several moves, and a chapter on retro fashions that includes a "starter kit" for guys and dolls. Sidebars cover topics like "Swing Lingo" and "Ten Reasons Swing Came Back" (Reason number three: Grunge). The back of the book features a city-by-city guide to swing clubs nationwide, plus lists of the best swing Web sites, magazines, and movies.

Author Degen Pener gets a gold star for his copious research and delightful writing style. Rich with anecdotes and chock-full of facts, The swing Book is a superb resource for swing lovers of all ages. Put it at the top of your holiday wish list.

-Joanne O'Day



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Bellevue Cadillac—Prozac Nation
Big Kahuna—Hawaiian Swing
Big Rude Jake—Big Rude Jake
Big Tubba Mista—Knock One Back
Bill Elliott Swing Orchestra—
Swingin' The Century
Bim Bam Baby—Who Am I Gonna Love
Black Jacket Racket—Volume II
Blue Saracens—What's A Saracen?
The Camaros—Evil
Casey MacGill & The Spirits of Rhythm—Jump
The Delegates—Delegatin'
George Gee & His Make Believe Ballroom Orchestra—Swingin' Live
Got Swing?—Volume I
The Music of Harry Warren—
Swing! Here and Now
House of Blues Swings!
Indigo Swing—Red Light
Jet Set Six—Livin' It Up
Lisa Stansfield—Swing: The Movie
Mob Hits—Volume I
Mora's Modern Rhythmists—
Mr. Rhythmist Goes To Town
Ray Gelato Giants—The Men From Uncle
Rockabilly Hall of Fame—
VolumesI & II
Royal Crown Revue—Walk on Fire
The Yalloppin' Hounds—
Ghetto Swing Extreme
  Retro Film Reviews
Swing!: The Movie
  Retro Reading Reviews
The Swing Book—Degen Pener
Musichound's Swing!; The Essential Music Guide
   
 


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