Bird & Diz
Illustrator: Ed Young
“They take turns, tossing notes back and forth like jugglers.” In this accordion book, Charlie “Bird” Parker and John “Dizzy” Gillespie create a fun, faster kind of jazz called bebop. Afterword. Discography. Black-and-white photograph of Charlie “Bird” Parker and John “Dizzy” Gillespie. Full-color illustrations done in pastel, gouache, and sumi ink.
JLG Release: Jun 2015
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Awards & Honors
SLJ’s Best Books of 2015, Nonfiction
2016 Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People, K–2
2016 CCBC Choices–The Arts
Children’s Book Committee Bank Street College of Education Best Children’s Books of 2016, Arts
Praise & Reviews
Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, Book List, The Horn Book Magazine, The Horn Book Guide^, Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly*, School Library Journal*
School Library Journal
This book’s capable creators capture the flavor of “Salt Peanuts,” a bebop classic associated with Charlie “Bird” Parker and Dizzy Gillespie. Golio has previously tackled the challenge of using words to present musicians as diverse as Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, and John Coltrane. The free vers [STARRED REVIEW]
This book’s capable creators capture the flavor of “Salt Peanuts,” a bebop classic associated with Charlie “Bird” Parker and Dizzy Gillespie. Golio has previously tackled the challenge of using words to present musicians as diverse as Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, and John Coltrane. The free verse is arranged to conjure speed and playfulness, and the imagery is amusing, i.e., Dizzy’s puffy cheeks are compared to a frog’s. The performance is presented as a game: “They take turns,/tossing notes back and forth like jugglers,/or play at the same time,/ . . . Two hearts—one heartbeat.” As they race to the finale, “Bird keeps flying, and Dizzy—/well, he’s just plain dizzy!/They’ll never catch each other,/but that’s the point.” The ever-experimental Young uses gouache and bursts of orange and pink pastel strokes to form Gillespie and his hot trumpet, whereas Coltrane’s saxophone sounds are rendered in greens and blues. The golden brown paper is a subtle nod to the song’s title and an effective foil for the color. Accordion pages pull out into a long spread, with the first side establishing the performers and their relationship. A river of ink on the water-repellant paper forms a beaded curvy line—the music pulsing across the gutters, climaxing in a rainbow of percussion. On the reverse, the letters of “bebop” blast out, morphing into frolicking abstractions. A brief afterword creates a context for bebop and encourages listening. It also admonishes readers to “pick up your crayons and draw!” That charge will be irresistible.—Wendy Lukehart, District of Columbia Public Library
The Horn Book Guide Review:
Golio distills the relationship between John “Diz” Gillespie and Charlie “Bird” Parker into one electric jam session, detailing the back-and-forth nature of their improvisational synthesis in expressive, vibrant language. Young’s uninterrupted frieze on accordion-bound heavy paper stock extends from the covers in a continuous panel. The words and imagery capture the controlled, explosive frenzy of their musical collaboration. An afterword offers more straightforward information.
9 9/16" x 8 3/8"
Level 0; Points: 0;
Scholastic Reading Counts
Level 0; Points: 0;