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Jazz Journeys to Japan: The Heart Within
(University of Michigan Press)

The author's personal odyssey through the jazz scene in Japan: Part music history, part cultural meditation, part travel narrative.

"Bill Minor has long been a highly respected observer of the jazz scene and one of its most literate journalists. In Jazz Journeys to Japan, he casts light on the much-neglected Japanese jazz scene and is not only quite informative but very witty." (Scott Yanow)

"Anyone who has read William Minor's Unzipped Souls: A Jazz Journey Through the Soviet Union knows the rare combination of talents he brings to his writings on music, from his sustained observation of a culture's internal dynamic to his skill as an interviewer. He has a poet's knowledge of the creative process as well, an insight that allows him to engage musicians at a special level. All those abilities are apparent in his new book, Jazz Journeys to Japan: The Heart Within." (Coda)

"You don't have to be a fan of jazz, Japan, or anything else to enjoy this book! The author's own insights and enthusiasm, captured in deft prose, will have you eating sushi and browsing the jazz section of your local music store in no time. Read it for the fascinating view it gives into both the jazz and Japanese cultures, or simply read it because it is extraordinarily well written." (A Satisfied Customer)

   

Monterey Jazz Festival: Forty Legendary Years
(Angel City Press)

A book (with 167 classic jazz photos; Foreward by Clint Eastwood) written to honor the fortieth anniversary of the world's longest continuously running jazz festival. "When it comes to the definitive story of a defining event in American history, you can't beat Monterey Jazz Festival: Forty Legendary Years" (Patricia Holt, San Francisco Chronicle); "An informative and lively narrative, full of amusing anecdotes and throughtful analysis" (Paul de Barros, Down Beat): "This is such a thorough accounting of jazz in Monterey that even Minor's photo captions are vignettes in themselves If his previous work, Unzipped Souls, alerted us to a fresh talent, his latest, Monterey Jazz Festival, easily places Minor among the top jazz critics and writers in the U.S." (Ray A. March, News from Home)

   

Unzipped Souls: Jazz Journey Through the Soviet Union
(Temple University Press)

This book recounts William Minor's 9000 kilometer summer of 1990 journey through the former Soviet Union, in search of jazz. "The book is endlessly illuminating, not only of musicians but of sociocultural ferment" (Bob Bamberger, JazzTimes); "Definitive portraits give one a good idea of [the musicians'] humanity, tastes in music, and the courageous battles they had to wage in order to survive. This is a book even the jazz experts will learn from" (Scott Yanow, Jazziz); "It is a timely and truly astonishing tale, and, in the author's lucid prose, a charming one as well" (W. Royal Stokes); "What was obviously a trip of a lifetime turns into an evocative, highly entertaining journey for the uninitiated into the heart of Russian jazz, culture, customs, and people" (Tom Sekowski, Coda)

   
Trek_cover Trek: Lips, Sunny, Pecker & Me
(Park Place Publications)
Also available from amazon.com

William Minor's highly entertaining "historical" comic novel about one family's pilgrimage during the 1976 American Bicentennial: filled with bright, playful and purposeful prose which, without making fun of anyone, has fun with just about everything and everyone American.

Rick Carroll (IZ Voice of the People): "Two Thumbs Up! William Minor's loopy Bicentennial road novel, is a real trip ... Absurd. Quirky. Off beat. Over the top. Below the belt. I've never in my life read anything like it--there IS nothing like it."

Robert Sward (A Much-Married Man and Rosicrucian in the Basement): "Bill Minor's TREK is that rare thing in fiction these days, Twain-style, laugh-out-loud funny, tall-tale storytelling. It has that 'What the hell is this?' quality. 'My God,' one asks oneself, 'Can he really carry this off?' Yes, yes, yes... Read it, read it, friend, and see."

Dan Ouellette (The Volkswagen Bug Book, DownBeat, Billboard): "Think Kerouac's On the Road with National Lampoon vacation warrior Chevy Chase at the wheel and the calamitous cast from Little Miss Sunshine tumbling in for the ride ... Written with colorful dialogue and steeped in cultural import, Mr. Minor's page-turner trek is indeed a true road trip of the absurd."

This novel may be purchased directly by writing William Minor (847 Junipero Avenue, Pacific Grove, California 93950) and sending a check or money order payable to William Minor: $14.95 for each copy of book requested, plus 7.25% sales tax for books shipped to California, and $5 Shipping/Handling for the total number of books ordered.

   
Some Grand Dust
Also available from amazon.com

Al Young: "In recent American literature, there is nothing at all like this somber, rollicking, double-headed chronicle of one set of linked lives lived out in the overlap of the 20th and 21st centuries."

James Schevill: "Al Young is absolutely right about the poems. Moker is marvelous, a real character and lives beyond Minor's shadow persona. Some Grand Dust makes marriage into a formidable metaphor, one that challenges every new couple to live beyond the usual sentimental films and advertisements. This is a book that will have a life of its own as it breaks through pain and reflection into the sunlight of praise and hope. Perhaps something could be arranged so it's passed out at every wedding so that newlyweds can become aware of the depth of experience that is really involved in a true marriage."

Molly Giles: "This is an honest, warm, and beautifully written tribute to the survival of love, no matter what. A book to treasure and pass on to your friends."

Carolyn Kizer: "I've enjoyed reading William Minor's poems for nearly 40 years. His memoir of a marriage is honest and touching. His imagined 'other life'---the second part of the book---is equally engaging, also embracing marriage: 'my metaphor.'"
   
Order the books below directly from:
Betty's Soup Shop Press
847 Junipero Avenue
Pacific Grove, CA 93950
Fax: (831) 375-4207
email: bminor@redshift.com
   

Goat Pan

This collection of thirty-four poems (with paintings, drawings and woodcuts by the author) is the result of a yearlong sojourn in Greece,
on the islands of Crete and Paros. The sequence, a homage to the goat-god Pan, contains the occasionally comic adventures and responses of "an American tourist attempting to cope with a land older, wiser, wilder, richer than himself." Handsomely illustrated.
Price: $10.

   

Natural Counterpoint: Poems by Paul Oehler and William Minor

In the tradition of the troubadors and wandering scholars of the Middle Ages, who placed the content of their poems and the poems themselves above self, poets William Minor and Paul Oehler set their egos aside and present their work-arranged anonymously-in four sections: First Person, the Outside, Cranial, and Other People. A unique, original collaborative collection.
Price: $10.

   

Bonus! With each purchase of both Goat Pan and Natural Counterpoint, you get a free copy of
Poet Santa Cruz: Number 4

This chapbook contains ten poems selected by William Minor from new and previous work, plus woodcuts and drawings from The Middle Class Fireside Poem: Homage to Osip Mandelstam. "His work is as first-rate as he is one of a kind. And what is especially wonderful about reading it is that you know you're in the hands of a congenital enjoyer of life who wants to share the way his world looks and sounds and feels and tastes" (from the Introduction by Al Young).


Home/Bio
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