Glorious Days and Nights
A Jazz Memoir
Photographs of jazz greats and fifty years of memories from a jazz photographer
Glorious Days and Nights is a personal account of the fifty-year career of jazz photographer Herb Snitzer, with a special focus on his years in New York City from 1957 to 1964. A photojournalist for Life, Look, and Fortune, Snitzer was the photo editor and later associate editor of the influential jazz magazine Metronome. During the 1960s, politics, race, and social strife and unrest swirled in Snitzer's life as a working artist. But throughout the bus boycotts, demonstrations, civil and racial unrest, what remained constant for him was jazz.
Snitzer recalls what it was like to go on the road with these musicians. His reflections run the gamut from serious meditations on his development as a young photographer working with musicians already of great stature to more conversational recollections of casual moments spent having fun with the jazz artists many of whom became close friends.
This book includes Snitzer's very best jazz photographs. He reveals the essences of the artists, their struggles, joys, and pains. A number of Snitzer's jazz images have become iconic, including Louis Armstrong with the Star of David, Lester Young at The Five Spot Café in New York City, John Coltrane reflected in a mirror, Thelonious Monk with piano keys reflected in his sunglasses, and Miles Davis at Newport. With eighty-five black-and-white images of jazz giants, Glorious Days and Nights provides a long-awaited testimony to the friendships and artistry that Snitzer developed over his remarkable career.