Stanley Lawrence Crouch was an American poet, musician, and literary critic syndicated columnist, novelist, and biographer, perhaps best known for his criticism of jazz and his 2000 novel Don’t the Moon Look Lonesome? He was born on December 14, 1945, in Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Stanley Lawrence Crouch the son of James and Emma Bea (Ford) Crouch was born in Los Angeles. He had been raised by his wife. In the 2005 television documentary Unforgivable Blackness by Ken Burns, Crouch claims that his father was a “terrorist,” and that he met the boxer Jack Johnson once. He was a voracious reader as a child, having read the complete works of Ernest Hemingway, Mark Twain, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and many other classics of American literature by the time he finished secondary education. His mother told him about her youth’s encounters focused on east Texas, and the southern midwest black community, including Kansas City’s emerging jazz community.
He was 74 years old.
Crouch was an amateur Drummer of Jazz. He founded the band Black Music Infinity along with David Murray. In 1975, with a move from California to New York City, where he shared a loft with Murray over an East Village club named the Tin Palace, he tried to continue his efforts. He was a drummer for Murray and for the underground New York loft jazz scene with other musicians.
Crouch performed the booking for an avant-garde jazz series at the club while serving as a guitarist, as well as arranging occasional concert activities at the Ladies’ Fort. He was not a good drummer by his own admission, saying “The problem was that I couldn’t really play. I didn’t have to be all that good because I was doing this avant-garde stuff, but I was a real knucklehead.”
Crouch continued to be an active author, writing fiction and non-fiction books, journal stories, and columns for newspapers. He was a New York Daily News columnist and a syndicated columnist. He also appeared in documentaries as a source, and in televised discussions as a guest.
Crouch died at Calvary Hospital in New York City on September 16, 2020. In a statement, his wife, Gloria Nixon-Crouch, confirmed the death but did not cite a particular reason.
The Louis Armstrong House Museum is saddened to hear of the passing of longtime Louis Armstrong Foundation President Stanley Crouch, a tireless advocate for the greatness of Louis Armstrong, the musician and the man. Full obit from Gloria Nixon-Crouch: https://t.co/rB6aGI8T6Tpic.twitter.com/oRiDRBYwnT
When I was a struggling young writer, Stanley Crouch wrote me a series of beautiful, keep-your-head-up emails. My favorite one ended with the below words. Rest in peace, Stanley. pic.twitter.com/xlVBRsXl6S
Stanley spoke about jazz (& other matters) frankly and with total conviction—unafraid of consequences and willing to take on prevailing fashions. Some will tell you this was wrong, but I wish we had a dozen more intellectuals like him. Alas, there was only one Stanley Crouch. pic.twitter.com/RohU3CvhAH