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His most recent book, Jazz (with critic Gary Giddins; Norton, 2009), published both as a textbook and as a trade book, has been nominated for the 2010 Jazz Journalists Association Jazz Award for Best Book about Jazz. He has also written The Birth of Bebop: A Social and Musical History (University of California, 1997, Macmillan U.K. 1999), which has won the American Musicological Society’s Kinkeldey Award for best book, The American Book Award, and an ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award; Jazz in America: Who's Listening? (1995), an interpretation of a massive survey by the NEH; and The Music of James Scott (with William H. Kenney, Smithsonian 1992).
Among his articles are “This is What I Do” (in Art From Start to Finish, edited Howard Becker, U Chicago, 2006); “Multiphrenia: A New Approach to Charlie Parker”: Musica Oggi (Milan, 2005-2006); "Struggling with 'Jazz," (Current Musicology, 2001-2002); "'Nice Work if You Can Get It': Thelonious Monk and Popular Song" (Black Music Research Journal 1999, The Thelonious Monk Reader, 2001); "What Did We Do to Be So Black and Blue?"(Musical Quarterly 1996); "Black, Brown and Beige and the Critics" (Black Music Research Journal, 1993); "Constructing the Jazz Tradition," which won the Irving Lowens Award in 1992 (Black American Literature Forum 1991, reprinted in The Jazz Cadence of American Culture, Columbia, 1998); "The Emergence of the Jazz Concert, 1935-1945" (American Music 1989); "Bebop and the Recording Industry" (Journal of the American Musicological Society 1988).
He is Series Editor of the Oxford Readers on American Musicians, and has recently served as a Fulbright Distinguished Chair (Odense University, Denmark 2001-2002).