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Valerie Wilmer:
As Serious As Your Life


Quartet Books,
London 1977

296 pages

ISBN: 978-1852427306


As essential now as when it was first published in 1977, As Serious As Your Life celebrates jazz with passion and conviction. Covering the dynamic period 1960-1976, Valerie Wilmer powerfully evokes a remarkable revolutionary musical era that continues to inspire generations of musicians.
Valerie Wilmer evaluates the musical careers of both the famous names of the time – Albert Ayler, Ornette Coleman, John Coltrane, Pharoah Sanders, Sun Ra and Cecil Taylor – and those of less well-known artists. It is her unique approach – placing the ‘new jazz’ in its political and social context – that makes As Serious As Your Life a classic of jazz criticism.

(Reprinted with kind permission)