I was at my local junk/thrift/antique shop which has about 4000 books (in no particular order) on shelving that is so close together that it's hard to walk in between. I was shimmying through, head sideways scanning the shelves when I spotted...."The First Book of Jazz" written by American poet Langston Hughes and illustrated by Cliff Roberts (who also did "Thomas" in my previous post). I grabbed and looked around to make sure no one else had seen MY treasure (forget the fact that no one else could possibly fit in the same aisle). $4 later, the book was MINE!!! I couldn't believe the price on this relatively rare book. Obviously, the sales girl didn't know what I had, and I wasn't going to enlighten her.
First published in 1955 (mine is the 16th printing) the book has fabulous mid century illustrations, all done in black and white. Here are a few of my favorites:
There's not much info on Cliff Roberts - I believe he only illustrated 3 books and was more involved in animation and commercial art (graphic design to you and me). You can read a bit about him here.
Langston Hughes was a Jazz lover as well as a poet and author and you can read more about him here
Out of darkness
All the songs you know
And throw them at the sun
Before they melt