News and Notes
Space is the Place: The Lives and Times of Sun Ra
From Birmingham to Cairo and many points in between, the artist formerly known as Herman Blount blazed a trail through the jazz world, enchanting and confounding audiences and critics all over the planet. In Space is the Place, Yale professor Szwed details Sun Ra's development both as a musician and as a resident of the planet Earth. And while the book slows down occasionally, particularly when Szwed details some of Ra's more oblique philosophies, in the end it's a fine companion to the rapturous music of Sun Ra and his Arkestra.