Verve: The Sound of America


The Sound of America

  1. Richard Havers
  2. Foreword by Herbie Hancock
  • ISBN 9780500517147
  • 27.70 x 21.60 cm
  • Hardback without Jacket
  • 400pp
  • With over 1,000 illustrations in colour and black and white
  • First published 2013

A beautifully produced, highly visual history of Verve Records: the ultimate record of how Verve Records changed the course of modern music and brought the sound of America to the world

‘Exhaustive, weighty and beautifully packaged … Richard Havers does an excellent job of contextualizing the story of Verve within the broader development of jazz … The assemblage of glorious archive photographs, tour posters, album sleeves and ephemera is eye-poppingly beautiful’ – The Daily Telegraph
‘Turns the story of a record label into a gloriously lively history of jazz; the book’s design almost makes you hear the music as you read’ – Peter Conrad, Books of the Year, The Observer
‘Lavish … lovingly assembled … a beautiful object … luxurious’ – Mojo
‘This here’s cerebral stuff … a fitting testament to one of the most important imprints in jazz’– Record Collector
‘Lavishly illustrated … Granz, who died in 2001, would be proud’– The Times Literary Supplement

Verve: The Sound of America
Verve: The Sound of America

The story of Verve Records is the story of jazz. Verve signed practically every major jazz artist of the fifties and sixties and is home to some of the greatest music ever recorded. Norman Granz, the record label’s founder, also organised hugely influential, high-profile, racially integrated concerts, first at the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and then at venues across America and then around the world.

See the video - A History of Verve Records with Richard Havers

This volume, published in anticipation of the 70th anniversary of the first Jazz at the Philharmonic concert, is the ultimate guide to the artists and the music that made Verve great and jazz cool.

Verve have opened up their archive and provided access to some of their rarest material. Features on the label’s key artists and key albums are guaranteed to interest both curious newcomers and dedicated fans – illustrated with both iconic and unseen photographs from some of the finest jazz photographers, classic cover art and ephemera, and insightful timelines.

Verve: The Sound of America

See a list of key artists featured

Richard Havers is jazz consultant to the Universal Music Group where he has produced box sets including Louis Armstrong: Ambassador of Jazz, as well as box sets including Impulse! Records and Ella Fitzgerald. His other books include Sinatra, Rolling With The Stones, Bill Wyman’s Blues Odyssey and Tony Visconti: Bowie, Bolan and the Boy from Brooklyn.

Customers in the USA/Canada please order via Thames & Hudson Inc