In this meticulously researched biography, author Pelle Berglund presents the first comprehensive book on the life of Buddy Rich, still considered by many to be the greatest drummer ever to pick up sticks. Using interviews with many of Buddy’s band members (some conducted by the author himself) along with extensive sourcing of quotes from practically every interview ever given by Buddy himself, a complete chronology of Buddy’s life is presented—along with insights into what drove him and what he thought about the various situations and people he encountered through his life. One of a Kind recounts each chapter of a life lived in the spotlight: childhood star Traps, the Drum Wonder; young jazz drummer with Joe Marsala and Bunny Berigan; star sideman with Artie Shaw, Harry James, and Tommy Dorsey; and leading various incarnations of the Buddy Rich Big Band. A twentieth century icon, Buddy’s relationships with Shaw, Dorsey, Count Basie, Johnny Carson, Frank Sinatra, Mel Torme, Gene Krupa, Norman Granz, Lana Turner, and his family, including wife Marie and daughter Cathy are insightfully investigated.
Never-before-seen photos of Buddy culled from the private collection of collector Charley Braun add a new perspective on Buddy’s life—including a 16-page featured photo section. Beyond providing a complete timeline of Buddy Rich’s life, One of a Kind provides a glimpse into the mind of a musical titan who demanded greatness from himself and those around him, and became one of the most celebrated and controversial stars in music.
377 pages | Foreword by Max Weinberg
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