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Our cultural darlings make music; we make them mythic. Every musical genre begets a community of listeners, performers, and critics, and quite often those categories are blurred. From the principled punk refusal of celebrity to hip-hop's celebration of its power, the music world is self-obsessed.
Stars Don't Stand Still in the Sky assembles scholars, music writers, industry workers, and musicians, who offer a range of opinions and experience of the nature of fame. The collection focuses on commerce, the crowd, performance and image, history and memory, and romance. Contributors discuss black women icons, love-songs, the legacy of the blues, the image of the tortured rock star, MTV, the politics of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the joy of line-dancing, and more.
The contributors are James Bernard, Anthony DeCurtis, Katherine Dieckmann, Chuck Eddy, Paul Gilroy, Daniel Glass, Lawrence Grossberg, Jessica Hagedorn, Kathleen Hanna, James Hannaham, Dave Hickey, Jon Langford, Greil Marcus, Angela McRobbie, Paul D. Miller (a.k.a. DJ Spooky), Barbara O'Dair, Ann Powers, Toshi Reagon, Simon Reynolds, Robert Santelli, Jon Savage, Danyel Smith, Arlene Stein, Deena Weinstein, and Ellen Willis.
Join the UK's hottest new boyband on their rollercoaster ride to superstardom, with the follow-up to the Number 1 bestselling book One Direction: Forever Young: Our Official X Factor Story.In 2010 they were just five normal boys, who didn't even know each other, dreaming of being up on stage, with fans screaming their names... so much has happened for One Direction since then!Following their huge success on The X Factor, and the hysteria they caused wherever they went on The X Factor tour, One Direction are quickly becoming the UK's biggest boyband, and the pop act that everyone wants to meet. And this is just the beginning...After storming the UK charts in 2011, 2012 looks set to be the year One Direction go global!Here, in their own official book, Harry, Niall, Zayn, Liam and Louis each tell the story of their amazing journeys in full - from teen hopefuls auditioning for The X Factor to pop superstars in the making, and now to living their dreams out. And the boys are so grateful to their fans for getting them there, they want to give you all an exclusive peek inside their world...Stunningly designed and jam packed full of exclusive unseen photos of the band on and off stage, plus private captured moments, the incredible story of One Direction's rise to fame is a must-have for any true fan.
Black Sabbath is often credited with inventing heavy metal when they released their first album in 1970. Their new style of music was loud, brutal, scary, innovative, and highly influential on heavy metal bands from then on. Their five decades of music crosses generations of fans, and they remain relevant to this day, with their 2013 album charting #1 in the U.S. and in at least five other countries. In Experiencing Black Sabbath: A Listener's Companion, musician and scholar Nolan Stolz leads the reader through Sabbath's 20 studio albums and additional songs, offering a close look into their music and the storied history of the band. Along the way, Stolz highlights often-overlooked key moments that defined Sabbath's unique musical style and legacy. Band members' own words illuminate certain aspects of the music, and Stolz makes connections from song to song, album to album, and sometimes across decades to create an intricate narrative of the band's entire catalogue. Experiencing Black Sabbath reveals the underappreciated genius of these heavy metal progenitors to all rock music fans and gives even the most fervent Sabbath fans a new way to appreciate this music.
Bob Dylan's ways with words are a wonder, matched as they are with his music and verified by those voices of his. In response to the whole range of Dylan early and late (his songs of social conscience, of earthly love, of divine love, and of contemplation), this critical appreciation listens to Dylan's attentive genius, alive in the very words and their rewards.
"Fools they made a mock of sin." Dylan's is an art in which sins are laid bare (and resisted), virtues are valued (and manifested), and the graces brought home. The seven deadly sins, the four cardinal virtues (harder to remember?), and the three heavenly graces: these make up everybody's world -- but Dylan's in particular. Or rather, his worlds, since human dealings of every kind are his for the artistic seizing. Pride is anatomized in "Like a Rolling Stone," Envy in "Positively 4th Street," Anger in "Only a Pawn in Their Game" ... But, hearteningly, Justice reclaims "Hattie Carroll," Fortitude "Blowin' in the Wind," Faith "Precious Angel," Hope "Forever Young," and Charity "Watered-Down Love."
In The "New Yorker, Alex Ross wrote that "Ricks's writing on Dylan is the best there is. Unlike most rock critics -- 'forty-year-olds talking to ten-year-olds, ' Dylan has called them -- he writes for adults." In the "Times (London), Bryan Appleyard maintained that "Ricks, one of the most distinguished literary critics of our time, is almost the only writer to have applied serious literary intelligence to Dylan ..."
Dylan's countless listeners (and even the artist himself, who knows?) may agree with W.H. Auden that Ricks "is exactly the kind of critic every poet dreams of finding."
The punk band D.O.A., established in 1978, is considered one of the founders of hardcore punk, alongside such other seminal groups as Black Flag and Minor Threat. Their raw, melodic sound, which drew comparisons to The Clash and The Ramones, has always been matched by the band's acute political sensibility. Known for its uncompromising and outspoken anarchist viewpoints, D.O.A. has been active on behalf of many issues, including anti-racism, anti-globalization, freedom of speech, women's rights, and the environment. Its slogan, "Talk - Action = 0," refers to the importance of artists and others who need to "walk the walk" when it comes to their politics.
After more than thirty years, D.O.A. remains as active as ever, touring internationally (including a trip to China, the first punk band to do so) and recording regularly (their thirteenth studio album was released in 2010); their fan base now spans three generations. This large-format book is a sprawling visual history of the group by lead singer and guitarist Joe Keithley--made up of vintage photographs, posters, handwritten lyrics, and other various ephemera--that offers a visceral glimpse into the hardcore life of one of the hardest-working punk bands in the business.
Joe Keithley is the founder of D.O.A. His autobiography "I,
Shithead: A Life in Punk" was published by Arsenal Pulp Press in
2003; now in its third printing, it has been translated into
French, German, and Italian.
From 1958 to 1963, Neil Sedaka sold 25 million records - more than anyone except Elvis Presley. He thought he could do no wrong, but a year later he was all but off the charts, swept away by The Beatles and the British Invasion - a blow he never saw coming. The deejays stopped playing his records, and the public stopped buying them. For 12 agonizing years, Sedaka battled to get back on the charts-back to respectability. He tried everything: working with hip, young songwriters, playing on demo sessions, and even enduring the rough and tumble of working men's clubs in remote corners in the UK. Then, one magical night, he performed at the Royal Albert Hall in London. His new songs, including 'Solitaire,' were greeted with thunderous applause. Shortly thereafter, Elton John, the biggest rock'n'roll star of the decade, stopped by to see him and offered to sign Neil to his new label, Rocket Records. And that was it. In October 1974, 'Laughter In The Rain' showed up at number 95 on Billboard-Sedaka's first appearance on the charts in over a decade. Sixteen weeks later it reached number one, sealing one of the most amazing comebacks in music history. This vivid and authoritative book, written with full access to Sedaka and those closest to him, tells the absorbing story of how he overcame one obstacle after another to become the ultimate rock'n'roll survivor.
How do you make a song a global smash hit that is guaranteed to make $millions? Who are the hit-manufacturers that can create a tune that is so catchy, so wildly addictive, that it sticks in the minds of millions of listeners? And who are the powerful few that have the capacity to transform, say, a young Barbadian woman called Robyn Rihanna Fenty into the global megastar that is Rihanna? In The Song Machine, John Seabrook dissects the workings of this machine, travelling the world to reveal its hidden formulas, and interview its geniuses - `the hitmakers' - at the centre of it all. Hilarious and jaw-droppingly shocking, this book will change how you think and feel about music, as well as how you listen to it.
One night in the early 1990s, a young Swedish music producer put a demo tape into the cassette deck of his Nissan Micra to listen to on his drive home. Before he got there, Denniz PoP knew he wasn't interested in producing the band, a bunch of unknowns called Ace of Base. But when he tried to remove the tape, it wouldn't come out, and no amount of mashing the Eject button would dislodge it. After two weeks of listening to the song on repeat, suddenly Denniz saw a way to make the tune work. That demo became `All That She Wants' and its success led to Ace of Base's record becoming one of the best-selling debut albums ever. From Tin Pan Alley and Motown to Rihanna and Taylor Swift, manufactured music has existed since the record industry began. But `All That She Wants' heralded the arrival of a new type of hitmaker, the faceless teams behind the music who painstakingly craft tunes to tweak the brain's delight in melody, rhythm and repetition. Travelling from New York to Los Angeles, Stockholm to Korea, John Seabrook visits the labs that build these hits, where teams assemble hook, bridge and chorus to infuriatingly catchy effect. If you've ever found yourself humming a chart hit you didn't even know you knew, this book will change the way you listen to music.
Not Dead Yet is Phil Collins' candid, witty, unvarnished story of the songs and shows, the hits and pans, his marriages and divorces, the ascents to the top of the charts and into the tabloid headlines. As one of only three musicians to sell over 100 million records both in a group and as a solo artist, Collins breathes rare air, but he has never lost his talent for crafting songs that touch listeners around the globe. This is the story of his epic career, from child actor to one of the most successful songwriters of the pop music era. A drummer since almost before he could walk, Collins received on-the-job training in the seedy, thrilling bars and clubs of 1960s swinging London before finally landing the drum seat in Genesis. Later he would step into the spotlight on vocals after the departure of Peter Gabriel, and compose the songs that would rocket him to international solo fame with the release of Face Value and `In the Air Tonight'. Whether he's recalling jamming with Eric Clapton and Robert Plant, pulling together a big band fronted by Tony Bennett, playing twice at Live Aid, or writing the Oscar-winning music for Disney's smash-hit animated film Tarzan, Collins keeps it intimate and his storytelling gift never wavers.
'My life has been written about over and over again, and that's mostly okay with me. Other people can talk about my life. Sometimes they'll get it right and sometimes they'll get it wrong. For me, when I think back across my own life, there are so many things that are painful. Sometimes I don't like discussing them. Sometimes I don't even like remembering them. But as I get older, the shape of that pain has changed. Sometimes memories come back to me when I least expect them. Maybe that's the only way it works when you've lived the life I've lived: starting a band with my brothers that was managed by my father, watching my father become difficult and then impossible, watching myself become difficult and then impossible, watching women I loved come and go, watching children come into the world, watching my brothers get older, watching them pass out of the world. Some of those things shaped me. Others scarred me. Sometimes it was hard to tell the difference. When I watched my father fly into a rage and take swings at me and my brothers, was that shaping or scarring? When we watched him grow frustrated with his day job and take solace in music, was that shaping or scarring? Those are all memories but I can't get to them all at once. I've had a whole lifetime to take them in. Now I have a whole book to put them out there.'Excerpt from I Am Brian Wilson
I can confirm that should you ever find yourself on stage playing the bass guitar with three left hands, it is usually the one in the middle that is the real one. The other two are probably phantoms. Playing the Bass with Three Left Hands tells the story of one of the most revered British bands of the 1980s: Spacemen 3. As the decade turned and acid house hit the mainstream, the band imploded spectacularly, going their separate ways just as they were on the cusp of breakthrough success. Here, Will Carruthers tells the story of his time in a wholly dysfunctional yet hugely influential band, in one of the funniest and most memorable music memoirs.
At its core a creative marriage between Donald Fagen and Walter Becker, Steely Dan are one of the defining and bestselling American rock acts of the last half-century, recording several of the cleverest and best-produced albums of the '70s - from the breathlessly catchy Can't Buy a Thrill to the sleekly sinister Gaucho.In the '90s they returned to remind us of how sorely we had missed their elegance and erudition, subsequently recording Two Against Nature and Everything Must Go during the following decade. They have sold close to forty-five million albums.'A lot of people think of them as the epitome of boring '70s stuff,' novelist William Gibson said in 1993, when Becker and Fagen toured for the first time in nineteen years. 'They don't realize this is probably the most subversive material pop has ever thrown up.'Now fully embraced by the 'Yacht Rock' generation - semi-ironic devotees of '70s Southern-California slickness - Steely Dan no longer polarize lo-fi punks and studio geeks in the way they used to. In 2001 they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.Any Major Dude Will Tell You collects some of the smartest and wittiest interviews Becker and Fagen have ever given, along with insightful reviews of - and commentary on - their extraordinary songs. Compiled by Rock's Backpages editor Barney Hoskyns, the book's contributors include Charles Shaar Murray, Robert Palmer, Ian MacDonald, Bud Scoppa, Penny Valentine, Fred Schruers, Sylvie Simmons and Michael Watts.
In the late 1950s, a flourishing musical culture began to emerge in major UK cities such as Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham and London. This was particularly true in the Merseyside area, where an estimated 350 different groups were active, often playing ballrooms, jive hives concert halls and clubs. This new music became known as Merseybeat. Local author and historian Anthony Hogan has chronicled the fascinating and little-told stories of many of the characters from that era; the people and the bands who made a big contribution to the region's rise to rock 'n' roll prominence. The Beat Makers describes the often-overlooked black music scene in Liverpool and its importance to Merseybeat, as well as the amazing story of the Liverbirds, who became the first all-girl beat band, and Derry Wilkie, the black singer who fronted a number of different bands and was the first Merseybeat artist to play in Hamburg and to release a record along with the Seniors. And with chapters on the great names such as Ted Kingsize Taylor, Johnny Guitar and Geoff Nugent, The Beat Makers is essential reading for all self-respecting lovers of rock 'n' roll history.
Rock on: From Elvis to Nirvana: the most important record covers in rock history Album art is indelibly linked to our collective musical memories; when you think of your favorite albums, you picture the covers. Many photographers, illustrators, and art directors have become celebrities from their album artworks the best examples of which will go down in history as permanent fixtures in popular culture. Paying tribute to this art form, Rock Covers brings you a compilation that includes 600 remarkable covers, from legendary to rare record releases. Artists as varied as Elvis Presley, The Beatles, The Sex Pistols, Pink Floyd, The Cure, Iron Maiden, and Sonic Youth are all gathered together here in celebration of the covers that defined their albums. Each cover is accompanied by a fact sheet listing the art director, photographer/illustrator, year, label, and more. Two hundred special records that changed the course of history, for either the band, the artist, or the music genre, are specially highlighted with short descriptions. Five professionals who made and shaped the history of rock share insider information in featured interviews while 10 leading rock DJs seal the deal with top-10 favorite record playlists."
Explosive autobiography of Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver bass guitarist Duff McKaganDuff McKagan was a co-founder of Guns N' Roses, with a 13-year tenure on bass in what was at the time the biggest band on earth. As well as pulling together the classic line-up (Slash on guitar, Steven Adler on drums, rhythm guitarist Izzy Stradlin and vocalist Axl Rose), Duff was the unofficial musical director of the band and the most experienced musician, and played bass, drums and guitar, as well as co-writing many of the songs. Over the years, Guns N' Roses have broken many records in rock history - APPETITE FOR DESTRUCTION is the most successful debut album in the history of recorded music; the band's 1991 records, USE YOUR ILLUSION parts 1 and 2, debuted at one and two on the album charts, a feat never achieve before or since; and their 28-month ILLUSION world tour is still the longest running concert tour in history.Duff charts the rise of the group, and his own fall, as with success came heavy drinking and drug use, culminating in his hospitalisation for acute pancreatitis in 1994. Forced to sober up, Duff started taking an interest in business, eventually completing a degree in economics and making a killing on the stock market. He has since worked with Slash in another band, Velvet Revolver, and has continued to play with various artists over the last 15 years.IT'S SO EASY (AND OTHER LIES) is the explosive memoir of a great rock musician who, against the odds, has lived to tell the tale.
David Guetta: The Songbook is a collection of 42 hit songs from the world's biggest DJ, arranged for piano, voice and guitar for the first time in one book. This artist-approved songbook features a 4-page colour photo section and includes Number 1 hits such as Titanium, When Love Takes Over and Club Can't Handle Me.
'This is our story of fifty fantastic years. We started out as a blues band playing the clubs and more recently we've filled the largest stadiums in the world with the kind of show that none of us could have imagined all those years ago. Curated by us, it features the very best photographs and ephemera from and beyond our archives.' Mick, Keith, Charlie & Ronnie On Thursday 12 July 1962 the Rolling Stones went on stage at the Marquee Club in London's Oxford Street. In the intervening fifty years the Stones have performed live in front of more people than any band...ever. They've played the smallest blues clubs and some of the biggest stadium tours of all time. They've had No.1 singles and albums in every country that has a popular music chart and have helped define global popular culture. A phenomenal half-century later, they now look back at their astounding career. Curated, introduced and narrated by the band themselves, The Rolling Stones 50 is the only officially authorized book to celebrate this milestone. With privileged access to a wealth of unseen and rare material, it is packed with superb reportage photography, contact sheets, negative strips, outtakes and so much more, from every period in the band's history. With more than 1,000 illustrations, it also features some of the most rare and interesting Stones memorabilia in existence: international posters, draft record cover art, bubblegum cards, jigsaws and other previously unpublished treasures specially photographed for this volume. The ephemera comes from the greatest Rolling Stones collection in the world, which belongs to Ali Zayeri. Featuring photography from the Daily Mirror's archive and with contributions by photography legends Gered Mankowitz, Jean-Marie Perier, Dezo Hoffmann, Michael Cooper, Terry O'Neill, Bent Rej, Philip Townsend and many others, this is the definitive celebration of fifty years of the Rolling Stones. From Mick, Keith, Charlie and Ronnie - here is one spectacular thank you to their fans all over the world.
Someday I'm Gonna Rent This Town! is a peek behind the musical curtain, written with humor and truth, revealing the struggles and glories of life as a hit songwriter. From Eddie Rabbitt's, "I Love a Rainy Night," to Dr. Hook's, "When You're in Love With a Beautiful Woman," the creative process is laid bare for all to see. Welcome to the odd world of Even Stevens. How does a preacher's kid from a small farm town arrive in a beat-up mail truck with 40 bucks in his pocket, survive on the cold, lonesome streets of Nashville, and end up a BMI "Songwriter of the Century"? Even Stevens pulls back the curtain for a peek at the music business in his book Someday I'm Gonna Rent This Town!, revisiting the rejection, false promises, inspiring creative characters, and money-grubbing scum suckers he met along the way: the drugged up record label exec, the Tina Turner "mistake," Clint Eastwood, and more. From his "Hippy" days in San Francisco to creating hit songs, the world of an aspiring songwriter is laid bare for all to see. Welcome to the odd world of Even Stevens.
The story of Snoop's musical and spiritual journey to Jamaica, reaching its culmination during the recording of his most recent album and captured in VICE and Snoopadelic Films documentary Reincarnated. Immediately following the death of longtime friend and collaborator Nate Dogg, Snoop headed to Jamaica to regroup and record his twelfth album. There, he experienced a radical transformation from hip-hop god and legendary leader of the West Coast gang rivalry to Rastafarian spokesperson Snoop Lion, embracing non-violence and reggae. This book is an extension of this powerful moment in the life of a pop culture icon captured on film by VICE Global Editor Andy Capper. Includes extended interviews with Bunny Wailer, Louis Farrakhan, Chris Blackwell, Daz Dillinger, Angela Hunte, and conversations between Snoop and VICE-never-before-seen photographs and untold stories from his personal archives from his early days singing in church to his discovery at sixteen by Dr. Dre and his phenomenal life onstage and on tour to his gang involvement, behind-the-scenes stills from 'insider' LA photographer Willie T., the best of Snoop from the inimitable VICE archives, and Snoop's handwritten notes and nicknames for the characters along the way. It also includes the limited edition vinyl only given to a select few musical insiders before the album's release.
Dido Armstrong has achieved superstar status at a pace unparalleled in recent times. With just one album to her name, shes managed to capture the imagination of millions of fans world-wide and top charts on a global scale. Set to be one of the most important and successful artists of the new millennium, a new album is already planned and an extensive world tour now underway.
Ideally presented for the target audience of 15-30 year olds, encompassing a newly researched text and many rarely seen photographs, the first book on the market to cover this icon of our age is set to achieve record sales.
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