*Big Boy: The Life and Music of Frank Goudie*
*By Dan Vernhettes with Christine Goudie and Tony Baldwin*
*76 pages, 100 photographs, index and discography, 30 euros + postage*
At last a fitting and gorgeous biography of Frank “Big Boy” Goudie brings
an overlooked jazz multi-instrumentalist into clear focus for the first
time. With nearly 100 images this handsome, full color limited edition 76
page volume encompasses the full scope of his monumental life.
Author Dan Vernhettes in association with Goudie’s daughter and researcher
Tony Baldwin fully documents and illustrates one of the most astonishing
and colorful lives of jazz. A remarkable feat of documentary research,
the writing flows well, concisely cross-referencing eyewitness accounts,
clippings, articles and swaths of previously unpublished photographs. A
comprehensive illustrated discography of Goudie’s music has been compiled
for the first time, including his many unissued San Francisco performance
The main heft of the book is Big Boy’s nearly three decades playing tenor
sax (mostly) in Europe. Yet his entire story is explored.
· * Emergence in golden age New Orleans and early travels through the
Southwest and Mexico.
· * His 1924 arrival in Paris even before Josephine Baker, and
decades as an esteemed African American jazzman in Europe.
· * A detailed account of his five years flourishing in South
· * Frank’s role in the San Francisco jazz revival 1956-63, peppered
with photographs and recollections of his fellow musicians (many supplied
by this reviewer).
Every aspect of Goudie’s globe spanning saga is given full measure. Each
chapter presents astonishing new details, vividly placing him in context
among illustrious colleagues and associates.
Frank Goudie was a towering musician. This book establishes solidly his
bona fides as a jazzman of the first order. The sweep of his journey
through the heart of early jazz is second to none in the last century:
kudos to the authors.
*Jazzedit also offers a landmark book about Tommy Ladnier and two
fascinating volumes exploring Jazz Puzzles of early New Orleans.*
JAZZ'EDIT, Dan Vernhettes, 45 rue Roger Buessard, 94200 Ivry sur Seine,