Good books about music

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I'm going to Delaware for spring break to look at colleges, and it's going to be pretty boring. I'm making a run to Best Buy and Barnes and Noble's tomorrow to get stuff, and I was wondering if anyone knew of good books about music. We're going for fun to read here, since I need something that doesn't take too long to get into. I've already read Never Mind the Pollacks (which was great), and my closest Barnes and Noble's has Our Band Could be Your Life and that uncensored oral history of punk book that was on the OC three weeks ago.

WillSommer, Thursday, 17 March 2005 04:18 (nineteen years ago) link

Perfect Sound Forever
The Music's All That Matters
What Rock Is All About
Lipstick Traces
Just Kill Me
Psychotic Reactions & Carburetor Dung
The Aesthetics of Rock

little ivan, Thursday, 17 March 2005 04:23 (nineteen years ago) link

Get the Lester Bangs books.

The Brainwasher (Twilight), Thursday, 17 March 2005 04:23 (nineteen years ago) link

and Please Kill Me: The Oral History of Punk by Legs McNeil

The Brainwasher (Twilight), Thursday, 17 March 2005 04:24 (nineteen years ago) link

Please Kill Me was on the OC?

Please kill me.

Oh well. Read it anyway. It's amazing. And Our Band Could Be Your Life. If you're interested in criticism, check out Psychotic Reactions and Carbeurator Dung or anything by Lester Bangs or one or two Greil Marcus books (The Basement Tapes). I'd stay away from Camden Joy, contrary to popular opinion.

I need something that doesn't take too long to get into

But you're going to college, man! Just buy Adorno's Essays on Music and accept that the next 4+ years of your life are going to be like that mwahahaha...

poortheatre (poortheatre), Thursday, 17 March 2005 04:26 (nineteen years ago) link

Dave Marsh, The Heart of Rock & Soul (his 1,001 most important singles of the rock era, in bite-size nuggets)

Joseph McCombs (Joseph McCombs), Thursday, 17 March 2005 04:43 (nineteen years ago) link

Love Saves the Day and Can't Stop Won't Stop by Tim Lawrence and Jeff Chang, respectively.

I also enjoyed Last Night a DJ Saved My Life and there's the ever-classic Generation Ecstasy.

deej., Thursday, 17 March 2005 04:49 (nineteen years ago) link

conflict of interest, but whatever:
Christoph Cox and Daniel Warner, Audio Culture: Readings in Modern Music
featuring Eno, Cage, Stockhausen, Merzbow, Reynolds, lots of other luminaries, and some jerk named Sherburne

philip sherburne (philip sherburne), Thursday, 17 March 2005 04:51 (nineteen years ago) link

Unsung Heroes of Rock and Roll- Tosches
Faithfull: An Autobiography- Marianne Faithfull
Chronicles v.1- Dylan
Black Monk Time- Eddie Shaw
I, Tina- Tina Turner
Uptight: the VU story,
Transformer- Bockris
Planet Joe- Joe Cole

Elisa (Elisa), Thursday, 17 March 2005 05:09 (nineteen years ago) link

John Cage's Silence is a great book about music and other things.

Mark (MarkR), Thursday, 17 March 2005 05:15 (nineteen years ago) link

All of the above, and Sidney Bechet's autobio (blanking on the title, but he only wrote one); Miles by Miles Davis; Rip It Up: The Black Experience in Rock 'N' Roll (Kandia Crazy Horse, ed.)

don, Thursday, 17 March 2005 05:17 (nineteen years ago) link

Also, Robert Palmer (not the singer)'s Deep Blues, Christgau's 70s Consumer Guide (yeah you can look up all the Consumer Guide entries at, 'cept maybe the *most* recent, which are at, but unless you just love typing in Subjects and hitting Enter and know exactly what to look for, the book is a lot more fun). Also most anything by Peter Guralnick (although I woouldn't start with the Elvis stuff)(if you want to get strung out ona good sick Elvis book, try Evis Aron Presley, by Alanna Nash with the Memphis Mafia) Most anything by Frith, Toop; Charles Keil' Uran Blues; Tom T. Hall's The Storyteller's Nashville (one of the funniest books I've read re musos, and good serious stuff too); Nelson Goerge's Seduced: The Life And Times Of A One Hit Wonder; Pamela Des Barres' I'm With The Band; Ruth Brown's Miss Rhythm (an epic!)

don, Thursday, 17 March 2005 05:41 (nineteen years ago) link

Ahh yeah Rap Attack by Toop. Does Greg Tate have any books out there worth picking up?

deej., Thursday, 17 March 2005 05:45 (nineteen years ago) link

Does Greg Tate have any books out there worth picking up?

I had never heard of Tate until I saw him speak not long ago. He is a BAD. ASS. Does he still write for The Voice? I feel like I never see him in there. Does he have a blog?

poortheatre (poortheatre), Thursday, 17 March 2005 05:56 (nineteen years ago) link

He definitely still writes for the voice, unbelievable writer too, sort of a marxist approach to hip-hop these days (as SFJ pointed out) which seems to distance him from discussing how the music moves him but which does raise significant points regarding hip-hop and the way it is being used both positively and negatively; I got sort of nuts at him during the "great tate debate" when he criticized people for celebrating the 30th anniversary of hip-hop and while I don't share his lack of enthusiasm/engagement with the current music, I do think he's absolutely right about what hip-hop's significance is (paraphrasing, renders African-Americans "all but invisible" in a cultural sense) and that unfortunately the advancement of African-American cultural capital has not resulted in economic justice or any kind of justice, really.

I'm mostly interested in reading a book of his since his prose is fairly magnificent.

deej., Thursday, 17 March 2005 06:23 (nineteen years ago) link

r. crumb draws the blues - r. crumb
country - nick tosches (his other books too of course, but this is my favorite)
rythm oil and the true adventures of the rolling stones by stanley booth
awopbopaloobop by nik cohn

J.D. (Justyn Dillingham), Thursday, 17 March 2005 07:05 (nineteen years ago) link

Touching From A Distance
Bass Culture
Songs They Don't Play On The Radio
Revolution In The Head
Rotten: No Dogs, No Blacks , No Irish

wtin, Thursday, 17 March 2005 10:56 (nineteen years ago) link

"Wonderland Avenue" - Danny Sugerman - I can't stand The Doors but I loved this book. Also, "The Dirt", the Motley Crue book. Again, hate the band, but a cracking read.

bg, Thursday, 17 March 2005 11:25 (nineteen years ago) link

Tate's 1991 collection Flyboy in the Buttermilk is tremendous. His review/demolition of Bad ("I'm White! What's Wrong with Michael Jackson") is worth the price by itself, especially when he sez that the album's title "accurately describes its contents in standard English."

If you want a cracking funny read on hip-hop, though, pick up The Rough Guide to Hip-Hop by Peter Shapiro, which has just been updated and enlarged (it was a pocket-size the first time, now it's 8 x 10). Best line goes to the Bad Boy Records writeup, when he notes that Puff Daddy, having been responsible for 40% of all 1997's number ones, moved to the Hamptons "so he could live by the sea, just like his magic dragon namesake."

Matos-Webster Dictionary (M Matos), Thursday, 17 March 2005 11:41 (nineteen years ago) link

actually, strike that "though," Toop can be funny and obviously so can Tate.

Matos-Webster Dictionary (M Matos), Thursday, 17 March 2005 11:42 (nineteen years ago) link

Neil McCormick's "Killing Bono" was a quick, fun read.

John Fredland (jfredland), Thursday, 17 March 2005 11:44 (nineteen years ago) link

"Wonderland Avenue" - Danny Sugerman - I can't stand The Doors but I loved this book. Also, "The Dirt", the Motley Crue book. Again, hate the band, but a cracking read.

Same here! (Of course there's also the Led Zep bio.)

nathalie barefoot in the head (stevie nixed), Thursday, 17 March 2005 11:46 (nineteen years ago) link

ooh, haven't read that led zep one. I just remembered a book called "Lost in Music" by Giles Smith, which was a hoot.

bg, Thursday, 17 March 2005 11:54 (nineteen years ago) link

chuck berry's autobiog

mark s (mark s), Thursday, 17 March 2005 12:26 (nineteen years ago) link

George Jones, I Lived To Tell It All
Miles Davis, Miles: The Autobiography

Next week on "The O.C.": Seth and Ryan get into a fatal disagreement over "James Taylor: Marked For Death," while Summer meets a new hottie who shares her disgust of Nick Hornby.

Keith C (kcraw916), Thursday, 17 March 2005 14:06 (nineteen years ago) link

Nelson George's previously mentioned Seduced is said to roman-a-clef of sorts (Russell Simmons, on back cover of early edition, earnestly denies that one of the characters is based on him--that's his whole blurb). Some wicked bits about the early days of hip-hop, and the music biz overall. The sequel, Urban Romance, spotlights a minor Seduced charactor, who writes for Billboard and the Voice. Haven't read it yet, but it's next. Tate's Everything But The Burden, about whites biting black music, is another I've heard good stuff about.

don, Thursday, 17 March 2005 22:09 (nineteen years ago) link

For a good time, read:

Dino by Nick Tosches (about Dean Martin; as deep as Catch a Fire by Timothy White, as entertaining as that Motley Crue book)

Backbeat: Earl Palmer's Story, by Tony Scherman (oral history/autobiography of the New Orleans drummer; had me at "Louis Armstrong was a pimp"...)

We Got the Neutron Bomb: The Untold Story of L.A. Punk by Marc Spitz and Brendan Mullen (better than Please Kill Me, kind of like L.A. punk itself)

Pete Scholtes, Thursday, 17 March 2005 22:30 (nineteen years ago) link

Here's TSOL frontman Jack Grisham in We Got the Neutron Bomb, before he announced his run for governor against Gray Davis and Arnold Schwarzenegger (and Gary Coleman, etc.):

I was torturing this guy in the garage of my mom's house in this nice suburban neighborhood with my whole family inside eating Easter dinner... and I'd got this guy tied up in the rafter with a rope around his legs and I'm beating him with a two-by-four. I said, "Hang on a minute," and put the two-by-four down and walked into the house and kissed my aunt and said like, "Oh hi, how you doing?" I grabbed a deviled egg, told them I'd be back in a minute, and I went back out, grabbed the two-by-four, and kept workin' on the guy. I finally had to get out of Vicious Circle 'cause of the violence. There were constant stabbings and beatings and people cruising by my house at night, shooting up the neighborhood....

I did something pretty bad to somebody and they retaliated with guns. It was a big deal, I had to split to Alaska for a while, they cut the lines on my car, blew up my car... fuck...I don't wanna say who they were, but they weren't punks... boy, they were pissed off.

Pete Scholtes, Thursday, 17 March 2005 22:34 (nineteen years ago) link

'Long Time Gone' the David Crosby (auto)biog is definitely the best music book i have ever read. the way he led his life and some of the decisions he made are genuinely stupefying. equal parts genius and retard. extraordinary when set against the soundtrack of the music he was making.

i went on holiday with the Deborah Curtis book and the Nick Drake biography once. happy times, let me tell you.

Lee F# (fsharp), Thursday, 17 March 2005 22:53 (nineteen years ago) link

dino is so good that i've lent and lost TWO copies to (so-called) friends

if you ever find dave rimmer's "once upon a time in the east", abt berlin east and west b4 the fall of the wall, i utterly UTTERLY recommend it: tho it's only somewhat abt music - unlike his earlier (and also good) "like punk never happened"

mark s (mark s), Thursday, 17 March 2005 22:53 (nineteen years ago) link

I've just got "Lost in the Grooves" by the editors of Scram (the same peeps who did "Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth"), a collection of reviews of culty, forgotten or neglected albums. Some very ILM choices in there: Jandek, Poster Children, Bridgette Fontaine etc. If only slsk was working properly...

Richard C (avoid80), Thursday, 17 March 2005 23:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I wrote a few entries for Lost In The Grooves (Boogie Down Productions, Schoolly D, Sonny Sharrock).

Joe Carducci's Rock and the Pop Narcotic is being reissued sometime this year.

pdf (Phil Freeman), Thursday, 17 March 2005 23:02 (nineteen years ago) link

and how could i forget, the funniest rock-related book ever: the life and times of little richard by charles white.

J.D. (Justyn Dillingham), Thursday, 17 March 2005 23:19 (nineteen years ago) link

xpost the David Crosby book has sections with different versions side by side, like the Synoptic Gospels: the Word according to St. David, his friends and ex-friends. But certainly not Gospel in the I-swung-naked-on-the-chandelier-but-now-I've-found-the-LORDuh (so send your dollars to my new friends today). He's got his regrets, but still the somae ornery critter ("Don't do crack, and also watch out for the CIA/Colobian Cartels, man," is more the POV)

don, Friday, 18 March 2005 00:01 (nineteen years ago) link

Bass Culture
Sadly retitled in America as The History of Jamaica's music or something like that, but it's excellent. The only disappointing aspect about it is that Lloyd Bradley doesn't cover any On-U-Sound releases in the book or even take them into account.

Quit glaring at Ian Riese-Moraine! He's mentally fraught! (Eastern Mantra), Friday, 18 March 2005 00:23 (nineteen years ago) link

I'm just finishing this, I like it, but it could have used a little bit more demographic and geographic background info on Jamaica and Kingston in particular.

JoB (JoB), Friday, 18 March 2005 01:32 (nineteen years ago) link

Nick Kent's "The Dark Stuff"
"Alt-Rock-o-Rama" (great on car trips!)
Brian Eno's "More Dark than Shark"
Motley Crue's "The Dirt" (well, not about music, per se)

Josh in Chicago (Josh in Chicago), Friday, 18 March 2005 01:54 (nineteen years ago) link

Blissed Out is still my favorite Simon Reynolds book. Jon Savage's England's Dreaming (see recent thread on him); Chuck Eddy's Stairway To Hell and Accidental Evolution; a couple of good anthologies: ROck She Wrote and Trouble Girls.

don, Friday, 18 March 2005 06:37 (nineteen years ago) link

that book "Hip: A History" isn't strictly about music but it's also very good. I think the author's name is John Leland.

Ashandeej, Friday, 18 March 2005 06:41 (nineteen years ago) link

Audio Culture (edited cox / warner) seconded, and limiting myself to the books next to my desk (library's in the hallway)

Electronic and Experimental Music by Thom Holmes
also; Wireless Imagination (d kahn / g whitehead)
Paul Griffiths - A Concise History of Avant-Garde Music
Paul Griffiths - Modern Music And Beyond
Curtis Roads
William Duckworth : Talking Music
Cage: Silence / A Year From Monday
Cage / Feldman: Conversations
James Tenney : Meta / Hodos
Karlheinz Stockhausen - Stockhausen on Music (Compiled by R Maconie)
Sound By Artists (ed. Dan Lander)
Chris Cutler - File Under Popular
Attali - Noise
Russolo - The Art of Noises (get a hold of a copy any way you can)
Trevor Wishart - On Sonic Art
Douglas Kahn - Noise Water Meat

milton parker (Jon L), Friday, 18 March 2005 07:13 (nineteen years ago) link

milton, has "modern music and beyond" been updated at all?: when i first read it (= in like 1977), i remember thinking "waddya mean beyond"!! it stops in 1968 with a sad thud!!

i think the attali book is lousy at book length—it's a good short polemic idea bulked out to a contradictory nonsense schema—and wireless imagination is patchy (which is a pity, cz it's a great idea for an essay collection)

mark s (mark s), Friday, 18 March 2005 09:11 (nineteen years ago) link

really good things I've read over the last few months were adorno's bk on mahler and morton feldman's 'give my regards to 8th street' essay comp.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Friday, 18 March 2005 09:55 (nineteen years ago) link

weird, I stopped reading Neutron Bomb halfway through--bored me for some reason, though the stories weren't in themselves boring. hmmm. (though it may be because I've never been all that into L.A. punk and like NYC punk way more.)

Matos-Webster Dictionary (M Matos), Friday, 18 March 2005 10:27 (nineteen years ago) link

"Bass Culture" seconded - terminally readable, even if you don't much care about the stuff (which I do); as much of a cultural history as anything else. There's a certain integrity to his (not total, by any means, but pronounced) dismissal of Dancehall (and I do sometimes hear, say, Bounty Killer a bit differently now that I've read about the jamaican warlords and can't just pretend it's all fun "hey let's pretend we're Al Pacino" wackyness), but I do sorta wish he had just stopped when "his" age was over.

The Elvis Guralnick books - again, you don't have to care about the subject matter to enjoy them (personally, I was so-so on Elvis before readin' 'em, am now an unabashed fan), and the second one is one hell of a car wreck: the descent starts like twenty pages into it, and by the end of the book you can't even feel sorry for the guy anymore, you just wonder why he hasn't kicked the bucket already.

"Where Did Our Love Go?" by Nelson George has some nice anecdotes, and is probably the best book on Motown around, tho to be frank I didn't learn all that much from it.

"The Heart Of Rock & Soul" seconded, and throw in the "New Book Of Rock Lists" too, if only for the sheer joy of reading the sentence "Tragedy The Intelligent Hoodlum Lists..." over and over again (not that book of rock jokes, tho, that was awful.) And also "Fortunate Son: The Best Of Dave Marsh", great stuff on Elvis, Muddy Waters, latino rock, etc.

I remember reading Maryiln Manson's "The Long Hard Road Out Of Hell" in my early teens and being surprised by how good it was (I'd always loathed the guy's music.) Dunno if it holds up.

"Sweet Soul Music", hell yeah.

I've read the entirety of Christgau's consumer guide online, and there's some great, great stuff there. So the books are recommended, too.

Daniel_Rf (Daniel_Rf), Friday, 18 March 2005 11:12 (nineteen years ago) link

Brother Ray by Ray Charles with David Ritz is fantastic and amazingly blunt and candid.

shookout (shookout), Friday, 18 March 2005 11:14 (nineteen years ago) link

'Joe Carducci's Rock and the Pop Narcotic is being reissued sometime this year.'

yay I've been wanting to read that one for a while!

adding to my prev post here leroi jones 'blues people' which I just finished this morning: most gd bks on music accept that they aren't just abt notes and chords.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Friday, 18 March 2005 12:53 (nineteen years ago) link

i think the attali book is lousy at book length"

You mean it's not long enough? I loved the book. Should re-read it...

I also loved the Lexicon Devil (bio on Darby Crash) though it's certainly not essential...

nathalie barefoot in the head (stevie nixed), Friday, 18 March 2005 12:54 (nineteen years ago) link

All my obvious suggestions are covered here, so let me just say: even if you're a die-hard, passionate, blacked-out-yr-own-teeth Joe Strummer/Clash fan, AVOID AT ALL COSTS the pile of dung known as "Let Fury Have the Hour: the Punk Rock Politics of Joe Strummer." The superficial "analysis," the copious mistakes (London Calling wasn't recorded in New York, dumbshit!), the TYPOS (?!?)'s a massacree!

Jason Toon, Friday, 18 March 2005 16:41 (nineteen years ago) link

African Rhythm and African Sensibility by John Miller Chernoff

the ONLY thing wrong with JMC's line is that he somewhat slightly seems to accept the assumption that the social dimension—the "dance"—isn’t also always part of all music in the West (though he does this in the context of getting ppl to see/hear/look for the fuller sense of the meaning of music): taking his insights abt Africa (Ghana, to be more accurate) and applying them everywhere else is revelatory

Most of it is a charming telling of him learning African drumming in Ghana

mark s (mark s), Friday, 18 March 2005 18:23 (nineteen years ago) link

The only two lengthy reads on Led Zep - Stephen Davis' Hammer of the Gods and roadie Richard Cole's 'Stairway to Heaven,' are both pulpy and full of dirt and invented mythology. Not to say I don't recommend them though.

And I hope someone someday undertakes a lengthy Sabbath bio.

57 7th (calstars), Friday, 18 March 2005 19:01 (nineteen years ago) link

Fast Product is more than a small label, really one of the pioneering forces of UK indie.

dan selzer, Friday, 1 December 2023 12:37 (seven months ago) link

The Light Pours Out of Me: The Authorised Biography of John McGeoch
Rory Sullivan-Burke

I talked a little bit about this book on the McGeoch thread: John McGeoch

Halfway there but for you, Friday, 1 December 2023 20:08 (seven months ago) link

i almost never read books about music, but i loved kyle gann's article on robert ashley as a minimalist so reading his ashley book now. starting with the chapter on the tetralogy (since 'improvement' is my favorite of ashley's works), it's good but feels like he rushed it to completion or condensed it or something. it's more like the outline of a really good, in-depth book or article. he drops some good insights that i want him to explore further, then it's over.

Deflatormouse, Friday, 1 December 2023 22:15 (seven months ago) link

Ah, felt sure the thread revive would be about the new (due 2024) Simon Reynolds book.

djh, Friday, 1 December 2023 22:28 (seven months ago) link


I think one of the most intriguing things Fast Product put out, in terms of how did that end up on there, was putting Out Of Vogue by the Middle Class on one of their Earcom compilations. I suppose they had a connection to the California scene because they also put out California Uber Alles by the Dead Kennedys.

Colonel Poo, Friday, 1 December 2023 22:32 (seven months ago) link

is My Magpie Eyes Are Hungry For The Prize worth reading if your interest in Creation is largely restricted to pre-Oasis? it is now available again

Colonel Poo, Friday, 1 December 2023 22:36 (seven months ago) link

It’s a pretty good primer for things you already know, CP, ie the uk indie scene 1979-83, then its a fairly faithful account afaict of the per-oasis years, i recall nothing of the later part of the story- it perhaps I stopped readers my it.

My gripe with it was that it didn’t seem to try any critical reappraisal, so the stuff which got the attention then (eg House of Love, Primal Scream) got good coverage and things I’d loved that I thought underexposed back then were barely touched on (eg Jasmine Minks, even Biff Bang Pow!). I accept this is primarily my problem.

It’s solid, interesting, no fireworks that I recall.

Tim, Friday, 1 December 2023 22:46 (seven months ago) link

I read some complaints that they hadn't reappraised MBV at all so most of it was complaining about how much money they spent.

I would probably have similar gripes by the sounds of it. it's not expensive atm though so might be worth a go or something I can ask for as an xmas present maybe

Colonel Poo, Friday, 1 December 2023 23:09 (seven months ago) link

Given all those stiff Thurston quotes---the more earnest he gets, the more awkward the phrasing, like he's sweating through his rental formalware----don't think I'll be seeking it out, but will take a look if library gets it, esp. that Public Image experience.

dow, Saturday, 2 December 2023 01:52 (seven months ago) link

Noh Mercy on the earcom comp was also Bah area I think.

dan selzer, Saturday, 2 December 2023 12:05 (seven months ago) link

Anyone else read Michael Cragg’s Reach For The Stars? Can’t recommend it highly enough.

piscesx, Saturday, 2 December 2023 12:18 (seven months ago) link

Anymore For Anymore: The Ronnie Lane Story by Caroline and David Stafford

Published by Omnibus Press (out now)

This is a fascinating account of a key player in the late 60’s British music explosion. There are many great stories here from his peak years with the Small Faces and the Rod Stewart-led Faces. Ronnie Lane was at the heart of the storm, playing bass, singing and writing. But it’s not all “happy days toy town” – it’s depressing to read of yet another young musician ripped off and exploited by the music biz sharks, and the last section of the book describing his lingering decline and death from MS, which makes for some grim reading.

The book doesn’t dwell too long on his East End childhood, so we’re spared the usual guff about jellied eels and Pearly Kings. Fortunately, his older brother Stan was well into music and Ronnie was playing in bands from a young age.

Hope it covers Slim Chance pretty well too.

dow, Saturday, 9 December 2023 19:53 (seven months ago) link

three months pass...

Just read the girl group oral history, But Will You Love Me Tomorrow?. I should have been warned by a couple of the comments upthread.

Frustrating. This book really needed to be edited with a heavier hand - to clean up grammar, to explain confusing quotes, to reconcile contradictory testimony, to add any kind of context. Dates! It needed far more dates.

For better or worse it gets quite gossipy. Some big names don't come off very well. Most of the new information the book left me with has to do with developments of the last 25 years, stuff not covered in Alan Betrock's Girl Groups: The Story of a Sound (1982) or John Clemente's Girl Groups: Fabulous Females that Rocked the World (2000). Was struck by one thing, which is the seemingly high rate of depression and mental issues associated with people who were involved in the girl group business.

Now I'm in the middle of Listen: On Music, Sound, and Us by Michel Faber, which seems mainly concerned with questioning assumptions we make about music that are tied up in our listening habits. So far so interesting.

Josefa, Thursday, 14 March 2024 15:30 (three months ago) link

The novelist?

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 15:41 (three months ago) link


Josefa, Thursday, 14 March 2024 15:43 (three months ago) link

Would read.

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 15:47 (three months ago) link

Especially since the main blurb seems to be from Gary Lucas!

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 15:47 (three months ago) link

Oh, I overlooked Robert Fripp, sorry

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 15:48 (three months ago) link

With regard to the other book: yeah I read a little and it also seemed to me to be super-disorganized, unedited and too gossipy even for me. Not surprised that many people ended up unhappy. Think I told you about the one guy I know– well, met a few times– who played guitar on some of those records and also produced a bit later on but really survived later on by writing and producing jingles.

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 15:52 (three months ago) link

Yeah, some people got rich from the girl group phenomenon but it wasn't the performers, outside of Diana Ross.

Ellie Greenwich ended up singing jingles.

Josefa, Thursday, 14 March 2024 15:57 (three months ago) link

One time I asked my guy about the whole Red Bird fiasco and he just stood there for a second standing next to his wife with his jaw dropped staring at me and said “you want to talk about THAT!?” so I changed the subject. At least I hope I did.

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 16:00 (three months ago) link

Now recalling some notorious Morris Levy quote about “they should pay ME!”

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 16:04 (three months ago) link

Which reminds me to ask, does Michel Faber weigh in on record man George Goldner?

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 16:06 (three months ago) link

Faber book has me hooked from the first footnote!

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 16:28 (three months ago) link

No Faber on Goldner. He seems more concerned with the listening end of music rather than production/business end.

Josefa, Thursday, 14 March 2024 16:32 (three months ago) link

No worries, figured, was really just tagging up

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 14 March 2024 16:34 (three months ago) link

You still reading it?

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 17 March 2024 21:56 (three months ago) link

Finished it. It gets a little scattershot as it goes along, but occasionally a point is made that would be a good start to a discussion. At times it seems as if the way he expresses his musical opinions, and his opinions of people who hold differing opinions, contradict his opening statement that particular tastes are beside the point of the book.

Josefa, Sunday, 17 March 2024 22:14 (three months ago) link

But it did make me dig out my Nana Mouskouri best of CD. Hadn’t listened to that in a while.

Josefa, Sunday, 17 March 2024 22:15 (three months ago) link

I sort of confirmed in passing one of his main points last night at karaoke

Don’t Want to Say Goodbye Jumbo (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 19 March 2024 23:16 (three months ago) link

new book about the Village Voice The Freaks Came Out To Write, author Tricia Romano has a section about Christgau getting into hiphop and hiring writers to cover it.

curmudgeon, Friday, 22 March 2024 16:17 (three months ago) link

This book seems really good to dip into.

Make Me Smile (Come Around and See Me) (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 25 March 2024 00:35 (three months ago) link

The oral history quote after quote approach of the Village Voice book sounds like it is one that one would want to dip in and dip out of .

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 27 March 2024 16:58 (three months ago) link

Ha, yeah, although I did read PLEASE KILL ME straight through from front to back, in non-hopscotch order.

Make Me Smile (Come Around and See Me) (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 27 March 2024 22:13 (three months ago) link

I'm around page 300. You could skip around--the chapters are very short and often self-contained--but I think you'd want to read it in order; there's a story there.

clemenza, Wednesday, 27 March 2024 22:22 (three months ago) link

one month passes...

Debating between buying Simon Reynolds Futuromania (I didn't finish Energy Flash, it started to feel like a collection of wiki summaries of people/events/music without exploring them) or Matthew Collin's Dream Machines: Electronic Music in Britain From Doctor Who to Acid House

papal hotwife (milo z), Monday, 13 May 2024 03:25 (two months ago) link

three weeks pass...

My w1fe read the Kathleen Hanna book in two sittings and loved it, she was already a fan but came away liking her even more.

omar little, Saturday, 8 June 2024 18:18 (one month ago) link

Bragging a little: My next book, In the Brewing Luminous: The Life & Music of Cecil Taylor, is at the printer and will be out in July. It's the best thing I've ever written. You can pre-order it from the publisher, and/but if anybody wants to review it, email me - burningambulance at gmail - and I'll send you a PDF.

Instead of create and send out, it pull back and consume (unperson), Saturday, 8 June 2024 18:50 (one month ago) link

Congrats unperson

Heez, Saturday, 8 June 2024 19:30 (one month ago) link

I picked up the Ritz book on Marvin Gaye and that Cantwell one on Merle Haggard

Heez, Saturday, 8 June 2024 19:32 (one month ago) link

Good stuff!

Billion Year Polyphonic Spree (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 10 June 2024 21:17 (one month ago) link

Congrats unperson! I look forward to reading it!

completely suited to the horny decadence (Capitaine Jay Vee), Monday, 10 June 2024 21:43 (one month ago) link

Seems like the best thread for this: I did a two-part Zoomcast with Nate Patrin on his movie-music book, The Needle and the Lens, talking about similarities and differences between his book and mine. (First time I've ever spoken to Nate--I know he used to post here.)

First part:

Second part:

clemenza, Tuesday, 11 June 2024 15:49 (one month ago) link

Def want to read the Cecil Taylor book, anyone in the US that’s going to carry it?

Slim is an Alien, Tuesday, 11 June 2024 22:44 (one month ago) link

Don't know yet; gotta ask my publisher what the distro situation is gonna be.

Instead of create and send out, it pull back and consume (unperson), Tuesday, 11 June 2024 23:05 (one month ago) link

Started on the Chris Stein book. It's enjoyable so far (late '60s) and often very funny.

completely suited to the horny decadence (Capitaine Jay Vee), Wednesday, 12 June 2024 10:20 (one month ago) link

one month passes...

Great cover!

Jordan s/t (Jordan), Friday, 12 July 2024 02:49 (yesterday) link

It's printed on really nice paper too; it weighs almost two pounds (just under 350 pages).

Congrats! Lovely cover image

completely suited to the horny decadence (Capitaine Jay Vee), Friday, 12 July 2024 17:15 (yesterday) link

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