Edward Berger, who played a vital role in the growth and development of the prestigious Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers University–Newark in various roles for nearly four decades, passed away on January 22, 2017. A celebration of his life will be held at a date to be announced.
In addition to his work at the institute, where he served as special projects consultant and associate director among several positions, Berger was an award-winning jazz writer and accomplished photographer, teacher, producer, and road manager.
A graduate of Indiana University, Berger earned a master in library science degree from Rutgers. His most recent book, Softly, With Feeling: Joe Wilder and the Breaking of Barriers in American Music, received the Association for Recorded Sound Collections' Award for Best Historical Research in Recorded Jazz in 2015.
He was a frequent contributor to Jazz Times as writer and photographer and for many years served as co-editor of the Journal of Jazz Studies.
Berger taught jazz at Lincoln Center’s Swing University and from 1979 to 2014 co-hosted Jazz from the Archives on WBGO-FM. He enjoyed a long association with jazz master Benny Carter, serving as Carter’s road manager for nearly two decades, as well as producing two Grammy Award-winning recordings for the saxophonist.
Berger’s other publications include Free Verse and Photos in the Key of Jazz (2015, with Gloria Krolak); Benny Carter: A Life in American Music (2002, with Morroe Berger and James Patrick); Basically Speaking: An Oral History of George Duvivier (1993); and Reminiscing in Tempo: The Life and Times of a Jazz Hustler (1990, with Teddy Reig).
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