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Marginal Man

Stephen Fender, 7 December 1989

Paul Robeson 
by Martin BaumlDuberman.
Bodley Head, 804 pp., £20, April 1989, 0 370 30575 2
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... drummers, ‘Duke Ellington’s hot rhythms seem childish.’ Duke Ellington childish. Well, well. Duberman explains this breathtaking assessment by saying that ‘Robeson was expressing an opinion shared by most “serious” composers of the day.’ Exactly. If any blame attaches to Robeson’s judgment, it is on the grounds of academicism rather than ...

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