Ted Gioia

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Ted Gioia.
Gioia (photo by Dave Shafer)

Ted Gioia (born 21 October 1957) is an American jazz critic and music historian who wrote The History of Jazz and Delta Blues, both selected as notable books of the year by The New York Times.[1][2] Gioia is an editor-in-chief of the Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians. He is also a jazz musician and one of the founders of Stanford University's jazz studies program.[3][4][5][6][7]


Gioia is the author of several other books on music, including West Coast Jazz (1992), The Jazz Standards (2012), and The Birth (and Death) of the Cool (2009). A second fully updated and expanded edition of The History of Jazz was published by Oxford University Press in 2011. His most recent book Love Songs: The Hidden History, published by Oxford University Press in 2015, is a survey of the music of courtship, romance and sexuality; it completes a trilogy of books on the social history of music that also includes Work Songs (2006) and Healing Songs (2006). In his study of love songs, Gioia contends that key innovations in the history of this music came from Africa and the Middle East.[8]

The Dallas Morning News has called Ted Gioia "one of the outstanding music historians in America." Three of his books have been honored with the ASCAP-Deems Taylor award. His concept of "post-cool," originally described in his book The Birth (and Death) of the Cool, was selected as one of the "Big Ideas of 2012" by Adbusters magazine.[9] In 2006, Gioia was the first to expose, in an article in the Los Angeles Times, the FBI files on folk and roots music icon Alan Lomax. He founded jazz.com, a music portal launched in December 2007, and served as President and Editor until 2010. He has also created a series of web sites that focus on various aspects of contemporary fiction, including conceptualfiction.com, www.greatbooksguide.com, www.thenewcanon.com, www.postmodernmystery.com, and www.fractiousfiction.com.

Gioia is a jazz pianist and composer. He has also produced recordings featuring Bobby Hutcherson, John Handy, Buddy Montgomery, and others.

Gioia grew up in an Italian-Mexican household in Hawthorne, California, and later earned degrees from Stanford University and Oxford University, as well as an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He served for a period as an adviser to Fortune 500 companies while with the Boston Consulting Group and McKinsey & Company. He is also the owner of one of the largest collections of research materials on jazz and ethnic music in the Western United States.

Gioia is the brother of poet Dana Gioia.[10][11]


1st ed. (1997); OCLC 36245922
2nd ed. (2011); OCLC 734057336
1st ed. (1992); OCLC 24009620
2nd ed. (1998); OCLC 38747512

Selected discography[edit]

  • The End of the Open Road, Ted Gioia Trio, Quartet Records Q1001 (1988); OCLC 32182337
Recorded June 9–11, 1986, and October 19, 1987, Menlo Park, California
  • Tango Cool, Ted Gioia Trio, Quartet Record QCD1006 (1990); OCLC 23948930
Recorded March 31, 1989, and April 7, 1990, San Francisco
  • The City is a Chinese Vase (1998)

Selected audio and visual[edit]

The End of The Open Road, Ted Gioia Trio
  1. "Stella by Starlight
  2. "A Sunday Waltz"
  3. "All The Things You Are"
  4. "Siena"
  5. "Lullaby in G"
  6. "I Fall in Love too Easily"
  7. "The Open Road"
  8. "The End Of The Open Road"
  9. "Do I Love You Because You're Beautiful"
  10. "Epilogue: Sunday Night"


  1. ^ "100 Notable Books of 2008," New York Times, November 26, 2008
  2. ^ "Notable Books of the Year 1998," New York Times, December 6, 1998
  3. ^ Contemporary Authors, Gale Group; ISSN 0887-3070
        Vol.  127 (1989); OCLC 35395922
        Vol.  86, new edition (2000); OCLC 43697091
  4. ^ The International Authors and Writers Who's Who (12th ed.), Ernest Kay (ed.) International Biographical Centre (1991); OCLC 59895267
  5. ^ The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz (2nd ed.) (Gioia is in Vol. 2 of 3), Barry Dean Kernfeld (ed.), Macmillan Publishers (2002); OCLC 46956628
  6. ^ Who's Who in Entertainment (3rd ed., 1998–1999), Marquis Who's Who (1997); OCLC 54303731
  7. ^ Who's Who in the West, Marquis Who's Who; OCLC 0896-7709
        24th ed., 1994–1995 (1993); OCLC 30525324
        25th ed., 1996–1997 (1995); OCLC 33938880
  8. ^ "Was the Love Song Invented in Africa and the Middle East," by Ted Gioia, The Daily Beast, February 8, 2015
  9. ^ "Post-Cool," by Ted Gioia, Adbusters, December 15, 2011
  10. ^ Stanford U alumni news
  11. ^ "Poet Provocateur," by Barbara Ries, The Stanford Magazine, July/August 2000; ISSN 0745-3981

External links[edit]