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"The centennial (ninth) edition of this venerable resource marks a changing of the guard. No longer compiled solely by Nicolas Slonimsky (who died in 1995), this edition is expanded in size and scope, reflecting trends in culture and scholarship by extending coverage beyond classical to popular and jazz music. Laura Kuhn and Dennis McIntyre edit classical content, William Porter jazz, and William Ruhlmann pop (a monumental task of selecting and editing). They bring the dictionary into the 21st century, acknowledging current research and performance trends. Slonimsky's charm and wit are still in evidence: prefaces from the fifth through eighth editions are reprinted and many of his entries are only lightly revised. Notably larger, the set adds indexes for genres, nationalities, and women composers and musicians. A more readable typeface and legible layout make entries easier to read. Bibliographies and lists of works (recordings in the case of many jazz and pop figures) are separated more distinctly from biographical information. Entries for classical ensembles (chamber ensembles, orchestras, vocal groups, instrumental duets) are still lacking. Jazz material is well done and inclusive. Pop content may cause anguish to some readers, since it represents the broadest span of subcategories and largest number of potential entries. Madonna and Gloria Estefan are included, but Britney Spears and Enrique Martin Morales (Ricky Martin) are not. Pop and rock bands are selectively represented. Personalities from rap and hip-hop are absent as are many pop stars from the sixties and seventies...Overall, this monumental work collocates information from classical, popular, and jazz music on a scale greater than any other source. Essential for all libraries." --- B. Doherty, Southwest Missouri State University CHOICE (September 2001)
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