That’s not the model Hollywood is interested (…) Hollywood likes stories of completely dysfunctionality…
w: Jeff Haas, „The New Jazz Archive: Thelonious Monk”
What also becomes clear by virtue of an accumulation of anecdotes, is just how dysfunctional many of the musicians were in the NY bebop jazz scene in the 40s and 50s in particular, but also into the 60s. The book is littered with stories of guys not showing up for gigs, being late, being drunk, being stoned, starting fights (physically sometimes), disappearing without explanation, dying young from diseases that would normally be rare in their age group, being psychotic, getting shot, knifed etc etc. Of course we all know these stories but when you read them in concentrated form like this, one after another, it really brings it home what the scene was like. It was (with some exceptions) a drug ravaged, alcoholic and dysfunctional community – severely discriminated against by society in general and by the organs of the State in particular. The story of Monk’s treatment at the hands of the police in Baltimore for example is both tragic and, even at this distance, enraging. Yet this underclass, operating in these appalling economic and societal conditions, managed to produce some of the greatest musicians and music of the 20th Century. Extraordinary.
„Monk – music and inimitable minimalism”
The psychology story is an opportunity for an Author to explore issues of a different feather, issues left untouched by the majority of Hollywood films.
„Dysfunctional Families and Their Stories”