Jazz Society and Friends of Library add to Jazz Collection

Photo courtesy of the Pensacola News Journal

The latest addition to the jazz project at the downtown Pensacola West Florida Public Library is a donation of approximately $2,000 worth of jazz books, CDs and videos. This year, the Friends of the Pensacola Public Library matched the Jazz Society of Pensacola’s donation of $1,000. This brings the value of the total collection to approximately $19,000.

The 30 jazz DVDs added include performances by Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Anita O’Day, Bill Evans and Dave Brubeck.

Jazz books include classic jazz photographs by Herman Leonard and Duncan Schiedt. Jazz history books include authors Ted Gioia and Gunther Schuller. There are new biographies of Thelonious Monk, Louis Armstrong and Artie Shaw. The are several collections of jazz commentary including selections from seventy-five years of columns from Downbeat Magazine. There is an elegant coffee-table sized book with text and photographs entitled The Definitive Illustrated Encyclopedia of Jazz and Blues published in England. Veteran writer Nat Hentoff has selected columns for his book, At the Jazz Band Ball; Sixty Years on the Jazz Scene. These cover Hentoff’s long experience in observing the jazz scene. He was the first non-musician to be selected as a Jazz Master by the National Endowment for the Arts.

CDs added to the collection include a collaboration of American singer/composer Willie Nelson and trumpeter/composer Wynton Marsalis. There are single CDs which include Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue, and a number of other singles, some of which are not readily available elsewhere. There are CD collections from Mosaic Records including Bing Crosby, Louis Armstrong, Artie Shaw, Lester Young, Dizzy Gillespie and Oscar Peterson. These are definitive collections of limited issue which come with an informative historical booklet. Also in this year’s donation is a CD from Arbors Records by trumpeter Randy Reinhardt, Jazz for Juniors.

Ralph Knowles and Norman Vickers are committee co-chairs for the Library Project. Knowles said, “We find that circulation of the jazz DVDs is about 50% at any time. Circulation for the jazz CDs is about 10 percent at any time. So, the addition of thirty jazz DVDs will help meet that interest. We also find that many middle and high school students use jazz materials for their educational projects. Additional material, especially the scholarly texts by Gioia and Schuller, should be helpful in that regard.”

Vickers said, “Although the main collection of jazz materials is at the downtown library, these resources are available at all five branches. This year is the 50th anniversary of Miles Davis’ recording, Kind of Blue; we thought it important to have in all branch libraries, so we obtained a copy for each. Similarly, we did so for the recording, Jazz for Juniors.” Vickers continued, “We are especially appreciative of the matching gift from Friends of the Pensacola Public Library to extend this effort. We have obtained labels for this donation of books, DVDs and CDs which acknowledge the contribution of both Friends of the Library and the Jazz Society.”

Library donations now searchable on library website

The library has added a “tag” for donations from the Jazz Society. To search from your computer: go to the library web site, click Catalog, then Search our catalog, then Power search. Scroll down to Item category 1, click on the arrow beside it for a drop down list, then choose Jazz Society Gift; then Search. This will give you the books we recently donated and a few CDs. (Only the new items are listed for now as there hasn’t been any retroactive work to include past items.)

For more information, email us at [email protected] or call (850) 433-8382 during office hours, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The F. Norman Vickers Artist in Residence Fund

On the thirtieth anniversary year of Jazz Pensacola, the Board of Directors announced the establishment of The F. Norman Vickers Artist In Residence Fund (VARF) in honor of our founder. This is the first permanent fund created by the Society, and it offers an exciting new avenue for your support.

The F. Norman Vickers Artist In Residence Fund is designated to further the long term mission of the Jazz Pensacola. It would support bringing noted jazz musicians and educators to Pensacola to provide instruction, performance and assistance to our membership and community constituents. The jazz artists selected would be made available for workshops and instruction to area schools and institutions of higher learning. The artist in residence would also provide special concerts that would augment the existing scheduled performances of Jazz Pensacola.

Contributions to, and earnings from the F. Norman Vickers Artist In Residence Fund, will be kept and reported on separately from other Jazz Pensacola finances and activities. Rules for fund administration and financial reports will be made available to members and donors upon request. As a designated fund, the F. Norman Vickers Artist in Residence Fund meets the requirements of the 501(c) (3) not for profit requirements, and expenditures from the Fund are restricted to its stated purposes.

Please consider contributing to the goals of this important and exciting venture, personally, or in honor of a birthday, anniversary, or in memory of a loved one. You may also find it an appropriate estate planning option. Make contributions payable to The F. Norman Vickers Artist in Residence Fund / VARF and mail your check to Jazz Pensacola, 3 West Garden St., Suite 418 • Pensacola, FL 32502-5633.