Coal Black Mornings
By Brett Anderson
Evening Standard Book of the Year. Observer Book of the Year. Guardian Book of the Year. Sunday Times Book of the Year. Telegraph Book of the Year. New Statesman Book of the Year. Herald Book of the Year. Mojo Book of the Year.Brett Anderson came from a world impossibly distant from rock star success, and in Coal Black Mornings he traces the journey that took him from a childhood as 'a snotty, sniffy, slightly maudlin sort of boy raised on Salad Cream and milky tea and cheap meat' to becoming founder and lead singer of Suede.Anderson grew up in Hayward's Heath on the grubby fringes of the Home Counties. As a teenager he clashed with his eccentric taxi-driving father (who would parade around their council house dressed as Lawrence of Arabia, air-conducting his favourite composers) and adored his beautiful, artistic mother. He brilliantly evokes the seventies, the suffocating discomfort of a very English kind of poverty and the burning need for escape that it breeds. Anderson charts the shabby romance of creativity as he travelled the tube in search of inspiration, fuelled by Marmite and nicotine, and Suede's rise from rehearsals in bedrooms, squats and pubs. And he catalogues the intense relationships that make and break bands as well as the devastating loss of his mother.Coal Black Mornings is profoundly moving, funny and intense - a book which stands alongside the most emotionally truthful of personal stories.
By Ian Winwood
Two decades after the Sex Pistols and the Ramones birthed punk music into the world, their artistic heirs burst onto the scene and changed the genre forever. While the punk originators remained underground favorites and were slow burns commercially, their heirs shattered commercial expectations for the genre. In 1994, Green Day and The Offspring each released their third albums, and the results were astounding. Green Day's Dookie went on to sell more than 15 million copies and The Offspring's Smash remains the all-time bestselling album released on an independent label. The times had changed, and so had the music.While many books, articles, and documentaries focus on the rise of punk in the '70s, few spend any substantial time on its resurgence in the '90s. Smash! will be the first to do so, detailing the circumstances surrounding the shift in '90s music culture away from grunge and legitimizing what many first-generation punks regard as post-punk, new wave, and generally anything but true punk music. With astounding access to all the key players of the time, including members of Green Day, The Offspring, NOFX, Rancid, Bad Religion, Social Distortion, and many others, renowned music writer Ian Winwood will at last give this significant, substantive, and compelling story its due. Punk rock bands were never truly successful or indeed truly famous, and that was that--until it wasn't. Smash! is the story of how the underdogs finally won and forever altered the landscape of mainstream music.
Women Who Rock
By Evelyn McDonnell
From Bessie Smith and The Supremes to Joan Baez, Madonna, Beyonce, Amy Winehouse, Dolly Parton, Sleater-Kinney, Taylor Swift, and scores more, women have played an essential and undeniable role in the evolution of popular music including blues, rock and roll, country, folk, glam rock, punk, and hip hop. Today, in a world traditionally dominated by male artists, women have a stronger influence on popular music than ever before. Yet, not since the late nineteen-nineties has there been a major work that acknowledges and pays tribute to the female artists who have contributed to, defined, and continue to make inroads in music. In WOMEN WHO ROCK, writer and professor of journalism and new media Evelyn McDonnell leads a team of women rock writers and pundits in an all-out celebration of 106 of the greatest female musicians. Organized chronologically, the book profiles each artist and places her in the context of both her genre and the musical world at large. Sidebars throughout recall key moments that shaped both the trajectory of music and how those moments influenced or were influenced by women artists. With full-color illustrated portraits by women artists, Women Who Rock will be THE long-awaited gift book for every musicfan, feminist, and female rocker, young and old.
Led Zeppelin All the Songs
By Jean-Michel Guesdon, Philippe Margotin
Fifty years after their first practice in a Soho basement, Led Zeppelin continues to fascinate new generations of listeners. While their back-stage debauchery has been the focus of other books, All the Songs is about the music, detailing the Page's studio magic and inspiration that made all nine albums go platinum, including Led Zeppelin IV which was certified x23 platinum and has sold more than 37 million copies worldwide. Studio stories will include their productive time at Headley Grange in Wales, a poorly-heated former poorhouse where they recorded parts of Led Zeppelin III, Led Zeppelin IV, Houses of the Holy and Physical Graffiti. And how the first album was recorded in three weeks but their second took six months, done while the band was on a world tour. They carried the masters of the recording session in a steamer trunk wherever they went. Out of these chaotic sessions came the "Whole Lotta Love," which was finished in New York with Hendrix engineer Eddie Kramer helping create the psychedelic middle part, as well as "The Lemon Song," which was cut live in the studio. Page worked feverishly with Kramer to mix the LP on a primitive 12-channel Altec board in a two-day span. Fans will also learn the genesis of their lyrics, the inspiration for their album covers, the instruments used, and the contributions of engineers such as Andy Johns, who helped create the iconic drum sound on "When the Levee Breaks" by recording Bonham at the bottom of a stairwell.
Bring It On Home
By Mark Blake
Bring it on Home is a celebration, a cautionary tale and a compelling human drama.Written with the full co-operation of the Grant family and with access to Grant's private correspondence, business contracts and photographs, this biography features interviews with the three surviving members of Led Zeppelin, and examines Grant's remarkably close (and some suggest unhealthy) relationship with Jimmy Page, his troubled relationship with Robert Plant and his great friendship with the late drummer John Bonham. Stories about how Grant intimidated the producers of The Song Remains the Same and the drug-related excess surrounding Swan Song Records and Grant's relationship with John Bindon and his extended coterie of Kings Road criminals are told with great candour, while the details of a plot to kidnap Led Zeppelin's band members' children by Jamaican gangsters are revealed for the first time. It also tells the dramatic and bleakly humorous family story of how Grant's estranged wife, and two children, Helen and Warren, dealt with this unusual and often tumultuous life. Warren Grant discusses, with unflinching honesty, an often-dangerous adolescence spent with a drug-addicted father, surrounded by groupies and dealers, in a house filled with shotguns. The narrative also features walk-on parts from Bob Dylan, Stanley Kubrick, Freddie Mercury, Elizabeth Taylor, Keith Moon, Elvis Presley, Elvis's father Vernon and Pope John XIII. As Warren Grant says now: 'My dad knew everyone'.
Women Who Rock Cross-Stitch
By Anna Fleiss, Lauren Mancuso
By Corey Taylor
The always-outspoken hard rock vocalist Corey Taylor begins America 51 with a reflection on what his itinerant youth and frequent worldwide travels with his multiplatinum bands Slipknot and Stone Sour have taught him about what it means to be an American in an increasingly unstable world. He examines the way America sees itself, specifically with regard to the propaganda surrounding America's origins (like a heavy-metal Howard Zinn), while also celebrating the quirks and behavior that make a true-blue American. Taylor likewise takes a look at how the world views us, and his findings should come as a surprise to no one. But behind Taylor's ranting and raving is a thoughtful and intelligent consideration, and even a sadness, of what America is compared to what it could and should be.Expertly balancing humor, outrage, and disbelief, Taylor examines the rotting core of America, evaluating everything from politics and race relations to modern family dynamics, millennials, and "man buns." No element of what constitutes America is safe from his adept and scathing eye. Continuing the wave of moral outrage begun in You're Making Me Hate You, Taylor flawlessly skewers contemporary America in his own signature style.
By K. K. Downing
Formed in Birmingham in 1968, Judas Priest, with its distinctive twin-guitar sound, studs and leather image, became the archetypal heavy metal band in the 1980s with international sales of over 50 million records. Iconic tracks like 'Breaking the Law', 'Living after Midnight' and 'You've Got Another Thing Coming' helped the band achieve extraordinary success in America but, as popular as they've been over the past five decades, no one from the band has stepped out of the stage lights to tell their or the band's story. Well, founding member K.K. Downing has had enough of that.As the band approaches its golden anniversary, fans will at last be able to delve backstage into the decades of shocking, hilarious, and haunting stories that surround the heavy metal institution. Downing discusses frontman Rob Halford's hidden sexuality, the personality conflicts (particularly with Glen Tipton), the business screw-ups, the acrimonious relationship with fellow heavy metal band Iron Maiden, and how Judas Priest was at ground zero for the parental outrage against heavy metal in the '80s, blaming it for the rampant drug abuse and suicides among teenagers. He reveals the life-changing moment when he looked at his bandmates on stage during a 2010 concert and thought, 'This is the last show'. Whatever the topic, whoever's involved, K.K. doesn't hold back.From the band at its beginning to his retirement in 2010 (and even still as a member of the band's board of directors), Downing has seen it all and is now finally at a place in his life where he can also let it all go. Even if you're a lifelong fan, if you think you know the full story of Judas Priest, well, you've got another thing coming.
The Gospel According to Luke
By Steve Lukather, Paul Rees
No one explodes one of the longest-held misconceptions of music history better than Steve Lukather and his band Toto. The dominant pop-culture sound of the late-1970s and '80s was not in fact the smash and sneer of punk, but a slick, polished amalgam of rock and R&B that was first staked out on Boz Scaggs' Silk Degrees. That album was shaped in large part by the founding members of Toto, who were emerging as the most in-demand elite session muso-crew in LA, and further developed on the band's self-titled three-million-selling debut smash of 1978. A string of hits followed for the band going into the '80s and beyond. Running parallel to this, as stellar session players, Lukather and band-mates David Paich, Jeff Porcaro and Steve Porcaro were also the creative linchpins on some of the most successful, influential and enduring records of the era. In The Gospel According to Luke, Lukather tells the Toto story: how a group of high school friends formed the band in 1977 and went on to sell more than 40 million records worldwide. He also lifts the lid on what really went on behind the closed studio doors and shows the unique creative processes of some of the most legendary names in music: from Quincy Jones, Paul McCartney, Stevie Nicks and Elton John to Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, Don Henley, Roger Waters and Aretha Franklin. And yet, Lukather's extraordinary tale encompasses the dark side of the American Dream.Engaging, incisive and often hilarious, The Gospel According to Luke is no ordinary rock memoir. It is the real thing . . .
Closer You Are
By Matthew Cutter
The authorized biography of Robert Pollard, indie rock icon and founder of the music group Guided by VoicesRobert Pollard has been a staple of the indie rock scene since the early 1980s, along with his band Guided by Voices. Pollard was a longtime grade school teacher who toiled endlessly on his music, only finding success after adopting a do-it-yourself approach, relying on lo-fi home recordings for much of his and his band's career. A prolific artist, Pollard continues to churn out album after album, much to the acclaim of critics and his obsessive and devoted fans. But his story has never been faithfully told in its entirety. Until now.Closer You Are is the authorized biography of Robert Pollard and Guided by Voices. Author Matthew Cutter is a longtime friend of Pollard, and at Pollard's personal request Cutter has set out to tell the whole, true story of Guided by Voices. This will be the first book to take an in-depth look at the man behind it all, with interviews conducted by the author with Pollard's friends, family, and bandmates, along with unfettered access to Pollard himself and his extensive archives, ephemera, and artwork, which many fans will no doubt recognize from the band's numerous album covers. A series of appendices will further illuminate Pollard's solo career, side projects, and art shows.Robert Pollard has had an amazing and seemingly endless career in rock music, but he's also established himself as a consummate artist who works on his own terms. Now fans can at long last learn the full story behind one of America's greatest living songwriters.
By Barney Hoskyns
'An indispensable compendium for Steely Dan fans' The WireAt 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.Major Dudes 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.
Fare Thee Well
By Joel Selvin
A tell-all biography of the epic in-fighting of the Grateful Dead in the years following band leader Jerry Garcia's death in 1995The Grateful Dead rose to greatness under the inspired leadership of guitarist Jerry Garcia, but the band very nearly died along with him. When Garcia passed away suddenly in August of 1995, the remaining band members experienced full crises of confidence and identity. So long defined by Garcia's vision for the group, the surviving "Core Four," as they came to be called, were reduced to conflicting agendas, strained relationships, and catastrophic business decisions that would leave the iconic band in shambles. Wrestling with how best to define their living legacy, the band made many attempts at restructuring, but it would take twenty years before relationships were mended enough for the Grateful Dead as fans remembered them to once again take the stage.Acclaimed music journalist and New York Timesbestselling author Joel Selvin was there for much of the turmoil following Garcia's death, and he'll offer a behind-the-scenes account of the ebbs and flows that occurred during the ensuing two decades. Plenty of books have been written about the rise of the Grateful Dead, but this final chapter of the band's history has never before been explored in detail. Culminating in the landmark tour bearing the same name, Fare Thee Wellcharts the arduous journey from Garcia's passing all the way up to the uneasy agreement between the Core Four that led to the series of shows celebrating the band's fiftieth anniversary and finally allowing for a proper, and joyous, sendoff of the group revered by so many.
By Marcia Barrett
Coming to London aged thirteen from desperate poverty in Jamaica; pregnant at fifteen after being abused by a family friend; fifteen years later singing in Boney M, one of the biggest international groups of the late-1970s; a messy group split and millions in unpaid royalties during the 1980s; a 1990s solo career interrupted by six bouts of cancer - ovarian, breast, lymph node (twice), spine and oesophagus - and having to learn to walk again. Yet throughout Marcia Barrett has remained totally cheerful, relentlessly optimistic and a shining inspiration, looking on every obstacle as a mere inconvenience rather than anything insurmountable. Now, she is ready to tell her fantastic story, which is much more than just a pop star autobiography. It is a charming, candid, laugh-out-loud story of survival, triumph, indomitable spirit and total upfullness, often driven by sheer force of will. It is also that very rare thing in British publishing, a feelgood story for black women that has real significance among the UK's African-Caribbean population - there are very few middle-aged black women in this country (a keen book-buying demographic) who didn't, as youngsters, have hairbraiding copied from Marcia Barrett. But of course it has a mainstream audience too: the battles against cancer are relevant to all women, as is much of her early personal life and balancing looking after her mother and son with life on the road in Boney M.