In the run-up to the acclaimed Gerald Early's lecture on Ellison and jazz on Wednesday, June 20 at 7pm, I highly recommend this New Yorker article. Entitled "Why Did Ralph Ellison Despise Modern Jazz?" by Richard Brody, it's a nice brief entree into the topic.
And while you're at it, take a look at the page from the National Jazz Museum in Harlem's exhibit Ralph Ellison: a Man and His Records. View the catalog of Ellison's record collection and more.