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(Published: July 05, 2007)



Unless, an entertainment book/historical essay contains plenty of photos, illustrations, the author's personal touch, documented powerful statements, and wealth of information presented for the first time, a published work on Jazz, showbiz and music will never reach a large audience, nor catch the interest of serious students of the world of showbiz and performing arts. It is not enough to include detailed biographies of stars to render a Who's Who, a meaningful reference tool. It got to have warmth, originality and unusual approach to the subject of showbiz, stars, singers and their times. The new book: BEST MUSICIANS, SINGERS, ALBUMS AND ENTERTAINMENT PERSONALITIES OF THE 19th, 20th AND 21st CENTURIES (VOLUME V of the World Who's Who in Jazz, Cabaret, Music and Entertainment)) succeeded in transmuting a traditional Who's Who into a most unusual, refreshing, fun, authoritative publication, yet threatening to the camouflaged and biased accuracy in the history of entertainment, music, Jazz, Soul, Ragtime and Rock "N" Roll in America!
The book reveals unpleasant and choking facts about powerful figures of the early American music industry that alienated the art of performing and singing from their truthful and humanistic values. It also illustrates how influential decision makers, historians and biased powerful executives in the 19th century and early 20th century deprived many of the early American composers and entertainers - and particularly women composers- from copyrights, public recognition, earnings, royalties and basic intellectual property rights. The book also, discusses in details very disturbing aspects, passages and events that have positively and negatively altered the course and image of showbiz, music, Jazz, and the lives of many singers and musicians for the past 200 years in America. Here are some chocking excerpts from the book.

EXAMPLE ONE: On page 2354, the author wrote this caption for an ice cream truck photo: "A Galliker ice cream truck of the era. Ice cream trucks in towns throughout America played a version of "The Entertainer" through loudspeakers to attract customers and children. That was the very first tune played by ice cream trucks in the United States. Pastors in white neighborhoods did NOT allow white children to buy ice cream from trucks playing a "black tune". So owners of ice cream factories instructed the driver to "stick his head" out of the window, so everybody would see he was "white". This how, why and when the expression "stick out your head" or "stick out your neck" entered the American vocabulary. It entered from the window of an ice cream truck." On page 2352, there is a reprint of an article published in the Cleveland Gazette, Issue 1, Number 18, Page 2, Date: 12/09/1893, (courtesy of the Library of Congress) that goes like this: Cake walks (Early form of Jazz) are disgraceful...relics of slavery and should not be tolerated for a moment and should not be performed in churches (White Churches). This statement was given by a "White Bishop" to the media and his congregation.

EXAMPLE TWO: On page 2356, the author wrote: "The Work of Early Female Songwriters: Sometimes, it was extremely difficult to know whether the musical work was done by a man or a woman, because female composers and singers -in many instances- were NOT allowed to use their full names. Only their initials were printed on the sheet music!! It was strongly believed that women were not capable of writing good material. Ironically, this prejudice and bias against women reminds me of the early days of Greek theater, when women were not allowed to appear or perform on stage. So male performers had to disguise themselves as women." The author gives names and cites incidents.

EXAMPLE THREE: The author wrote about black entertainers and artists who were not allowed to perform in musicals written by white composers. On page 2344, he refers to the early (including premiere) production of Gilbert and Sullivan's Gondoliers around 1893 and 1900. None of "colored people" despite their talents were allowed to take part in this production...

EXAMPLE FOUR: On page 2650, there is a reference made to why and how the recording industry executives and TV stations producers cheated the Mamas and the Papas and particularly John Phillips and Michelle Phillips...including their harsh comments about Pop and Hippie- Jazz music!

EXAMPLE FIVE: On protecting the royalties and rights of singers, composers and musicians. The author tells frightening stories about greedy and Machiavellic music publishers who used all the tricks in the book to cheat recording artists. He gave as an example Hart P. Danks who had two of the biggest hits in music history and died in absolute poverty, cheated by publishers and producers who paid him only thirty Dollars for recording his songs. He never received a dime from royalties. Fortunately, in 1924, ASCAP won a major battle against the Dill Radio Congress Bill that would have allowed radio stations, restaurant owners and music publishers to play music without paying royalties and copyrights to singers, musicians and composers. This was clearly discussed on page 2339.


The book has 975 photos and artwork, illustrating America's musical history, singers, musicians and headliners from the early 19th century to the very present. Starting with the early recording artists, very first Jazz tunes, early acts on Broadway and reaching to the most recent appearance and work of a star, a musician, or a jazz-cabaret femme fatale who is trying to make a name for herself on Broadway, in Hollywood or just -simply- anywhere at any cost. BEST MUSICIANS, SINGERS, ALBUMS AND ENTERTAINMENT PERSONALITIES OF THE 19th, 20th AND 21st CENTURIES is a global entertainment panorama, both historically and visually, and is on its way to become an international bestseller, no doubt! In addition to the fun part, the visual beauty of the book and its magnificent layout, the scholarly and historical chapters are overwhelming and strongly impressive. For instance, the author lists and rates the 2,500 best recordings (CDs and Albums) in Jazz, Pop, Standards, Rock and Cabaret from the very early days of recordings to the most recent release by a star or a starlet. Also, the book lists the names (And Photos) and describes the accomplishments of the best singers in the business, based upon international/national survey, and their Dollar value on the market. Quite an audacious undertaking. It could infuriate many in the business, nevertheless it remains impressive and quite entertaining. This is the trademark of the books of Maximillien de Lafayette, author of the Who's Who, which is the Volume V of the series The World Who's Who in Jazz, Cabaret, Music and Entertainment, published by the Federation of American Musicians, Singers and Performing Artists in collaboration with TimesSquarePress. Lafayette wrote more than 105 books. But BEST MUSICIANS, SINGERS, ALBUMS AND ENTERTAINMENT PERSONALITIES OF THE 19th, 20th AND 21st CENTURIES is his best work. On one side of the coin, this volume is a most indispensable reference tool, and on the other side of the coin, Volume V of the World Who's Who in Jazz, Cabaret, Music and Entertainment is one of the most entertaining, lively and fun books to read. Among the discussed topics in the books, the most interesting ones are: A-Ragtime and Jazz female composers, B-Memorable moments and shows in the history of entertainment in America, C- Class A and Class D of Jazz and cabaret musicians and singers (Watch Out! It is steamy and controversial), D- Early years of Rock "N" Roll and Jazz, E-And the best of all is: Outstanding Personalities of Jazz, Cabaret, and Entertainment Personalities of the 19th, 20th and 21st Centuries. Patrice Ferris appears on the front cover of the book. A good choice indeed. Bruce Morrow a.k.a. COUSIN BRUCIE from Sirius Satelitte Radio, Dr. Trudy Pitts, and Diva Antoinette Montague, rising star of Soul and Jazz are on the back cover. And they look good! Diversity is an asset when it comes to writing a book; diversity of themes, topics and facets of the study. This book has a strong emphasis on the multi-varied aspects of American entertainment and performing arts. And the listings of stars and legends overflow with abundance and meticulous details, ranging from Frank Sinatra, Al Jolson, Jimmy Durante, Dinah Shore, Bing Crosby, Elvis Presley, Tony Bennett to Eartha Kitt, Cousin Brucie, Patrice Ferris, Roseanna Vitro, Mamas and Papas, Michelle Phillips, the Beatles, B.B King, Doo Wop legends, Madonna, Celine Dion, Peggy Judy, Peggy Lee and the most recent discovered talent in music. In other words, this volume has covered all the territories and angles of music and showbiz for the past two centuries.

Volume V of the World Who's Who in Jazz, Cabaret, Music and Entertainment is highly recommended; one of the 10 best books on entertainment in a decade. Grab a copy, it is a timeless treasure!

More Information: http://www.federationofamericanmusicianssingersandperformingartists.org

Submitted By: Germaine Poitiers, Ph.D.

Email: sample@email.tst

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