Cover image for Landing on the wrong note : jazz, dissonance, and critical practice
Landing on the wrong note : jazz, dissonance, and critical practice
Heble, Ajay, 1961-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Routledge, [2000]

Physical Description:
xiv, 258 pages ; 24 cm
Reading Level:
1650 Lexile.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
ML3506 .H42 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



An imaginative and passionate synthesis of form and function, Landing on the Wrong NOtegoes beyond mainstream jazz criticism, outlining a new poetics of jazz that emerges not from the ivory tower but from the clubs, performances, and lives of today's jazz musicians.

Author Notes

Ajay Heble is Associate Professor in the School of Literatures and Performances in English at the University of Guelph in Canada.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

A Canadian academic with wide-ranging interests in literature, popular culture, American studies, linguistics, and jazz, Heble drew on all of his academic background and on his experience as a director of the Guelph Jazz Festival in developing this study. Heble is interested in jazz both as a reflection of society and as a means of changing society; he emphasizes the avant-garde (e.g., Sun Ra, John Zorn, the Art Ensemble of Chicago). He is particularly interested in jazz as a means of "facilitating alternative social formations." The experimental jazz that is the focus of Heble's interests represents the smallest segment of the jazz audience and so these academic musings will have a small audience. In addition, though he affirms that academic work needs to be "more fundamentally connected" to the outside world, he proceeds to explore his ideas in a style that will be difficult--if not impossible--for a nonacademic outsider to follow. Few readers will want to work their way through the heavy academic trappings to get to some of the most interesting notions Heble explores. The extensive list of works cited and a selective list of audio and video references may prove useful to undergraduate and general readers, but this is a book for graduate students and researchers. C. M. Weisenberg University of California, Los Angeles

Table of Contents

Gillian Siddall
Prefacep. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
1. The Poetics of Jazz: From Symbolic to Semioticp. 29
2. The Rehistoricizing of Jazz: Chicago's "Urban Bushmen" and the Problem of Representationp. 63
3. Performing Identity: Jazz Autobiography and the Politics of Literary Improvisationp. 89
4. "Space Is the Place": Jazz, Voice, and Resistancep. 117
5. Nice Work If You Can Get It: Women in Jazzp. 141
6. Capitulating to Barbarism: Jazz and/as Popular Culturep. 167
7. Up for Grabs: The Ethicopolitical Authority of Jazzp. 199
Conclusion: Alternative Public Spheresp. 229
Works Citedp. 239
Sound and Video Recordings Consultedp. 251
Indexp. 253