Stanley Dance was a jazz writer and oral historian of the swing era.
He began writing about the jazz scene for the French magazine Jazz Hot in 1935. In 1937, he visited New York City's jazz scene for three weeks with Helen Oakley, whom he married in 1946, and resided in England until moving to Connecticut in 1959. He wrote for Jazz Journal from 1948 until his death in 1999. In the 1950s he coined the term mainstream to describe those in between revivalist and modern, or alternatively between Dixieland and bebop. He is credited with helping to revive the career of pianist Earl Hines in 1964.
He also contributed liner notes for numerous musicians including Duke Ellington and Count Basie. In 1964 he was co-winner of the first Grammy Award for Best Album Notes. He was inducted into the Big Band and Jazz Hall of Fame in 1999, the year of his death, and posthumously received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Jazz Journalist Association.
His distaste for bebop, and most innovations in jazz after it, made him controversial. That said, he is admired for having been a champion of what he did like, as well as a significant collator of oral history in several books containing the recollections of swing era musicians.