Boys in the Trees
By Carly Simon
#1 New York Times BestsellerA People Magazine Top Ten Book of the Year'A sensational memoir . . . brilliantly well written. Carly Simon is incapable of writing a boring sentence . . . you can forgive anything for the unparalleled brilliance of her writing' - Lynn Barber, Sunday Times'Hugely affecting memoir . . . heartfelt and remarkable' - Fiona Sturges, IndependentCarly Simon is a household name. She was the staple of the '70s and '80s Billboard charts and was famously married to James Taylor with whom she has two children. She has had a career that has spanned four decades, resulting in thirteen top 40 hits, including the Number 1 song 'You're So Vain', numerous Grammy Awards, a Golden Globe and an Academy Award. She was the first artist in history to win a Grammy Award, an Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award for her song 'Let the River Run' (from the film Working Girl). Boys in the Trees is a rhapsodic, beautifully composed memoir of a young woman's coming of age amongst the glamorous literati and intelligentsia of Manhattan (her father was Richard Simon, co-founder of publishing giant Simon & Schuster), a reflection on a life begun amidst secrets and shame, and a powerful story of the strength to leave that all behind and forge a path of art, music and love in the Golden Age of folk and rock.At once an insider's look into a life in the spotlight, a lyric reflection on a particular time in our culture's history, and a beautiful memoir about the pains and joys of love and art, Boys in the Trees is the story Carly Simon has long been waiting to tell the world.Praise for the US edition:'One of the best celebrity memoirs of the year' Hollywood Reporter'Intelligent and captivating' People'Compelling' Rolling Stone
Breaking Down the Walls of Heartache
By Martin Aston
Popular music's gay DNA is inarguable, from Elvis in eye shadow and Little Richard's 'Tutti Frutti' to The Velvet Underground's subversive rock'n'roll and Bowie's ambisexual alien Ziggy Stardust; from kd lang's female Elvis to Kurt Cobain in a dress; from Noughties lesbian icon Beth Ditto to Lady Gaga's 'Born This Way' manifesto. But if collected essays and/or features have addressed gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender singers, songwriters, musicians and songs, no book has yet comprehensively and authoritatively drawn together all the threads to explore this as an unfolding, historical narrative: to tell the story of how music 'came out', from the days when homosexuals were deeply in the closet, but the love that once dared not speak its name sings it, and on daytime radio to boot.This story will reveal which songs have coded messages about sexuality, and which proudly declared the truth, including examples of heterosexual songwriters and singers who chose to address same-sex issues, from Rod Stewart's 'The Killing Of Georgie' - the first UK number one with a gay theme - to Suede's 'Animal Nitrate'. The narrative will unfold against a backdrop of historic social and political shifts, as LGBT rights pushed for visibility and equality, from the closet of the Fifties to the struggle and setbacks of the Sixties, the liberation of the Seventies, the mainstream invasion and AIDS crisis of the Eighties, the advances of the Nineties and the more immersed scene of the Noughties. These artists have indeed changed the world as we know it. Breaking Down the Walls of Heartache is a story for a wide audience, not just the LGBT community but a broad spectrum of music lovers who are fascinated by these characters, events, stories and songs. It is also a very timely tale, given the prominence of same-sex issues such as marriage equality, alongside the retrogressive steps in places such as Russia and parts of Africa, where songs encapsulating the gay/lesbian experience mirror those of the Sixties, signifying how the journey from illegality and bigotry to freedom is still far from over.
Bob Dylan All the Songs
By Philippe Margotin, Jean-Michel Guesdon
Bob Dylan: All the Songs focuses on Dylan's creative process and his organic, unencumbered style of recording. It is the only book to tell the stories, many unfamiliar even to his most fervent fans, behind all the 525 songs he released. Organized chronologically by album, Margotin and Guesdon recount the details that led to the composition of Dylan's recorded songs, what went on in the recording studio, what instruments he used, and behind-the-scenes account of the great artists that Dylan worked with.
A Brief Guide to The Sound of Music
By Paul Simpson
Everyone has heard the songs from The Sound of Music by Rodgers and Hammerstein. The stage show was a roaring success in New York and London, and the much-loved feature film, directed by Hollywood veteran Robert Wise, continues to be a staple of television schedules 50 years after its release in 1965. In this fascinating and wide-ranging book, Paul Simpson explores the incredible story of the Von Trapp family and their escape from the Third Reich in all its incarnations, from real-life adventure, to book, to stage, to award-winning film to cultural phenomenon. He discusses the stage show, the many differences that were incorporated into the fictionalisation of the tale, and how that story was brought to the screen. He also looks at the numerous other ways in which the Von Trapp's story has been told, including the two West German movies from the 1950s and the extensive forty-part Japanese anime series from the 1990s, to explain why the story of the Von Trapp family has appealed to so many generations.Praise for A Brief Guide to Stephen King:'The best book about King and his work I have ever read' Books Monthly
Black Dog Opera Library Box Set
By Georges Bizet, Giacomo Puccini, Giuseppe Verdi, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
The Black Dog Opera Library is the best, easiest and most informative and budget-friendly way to enjoy four of the greatest operas of all time. Finally available again, and packaged with gorgeous new covers, are four of the most popular operas in the Black Dog Opera Library: Carmen, La Boh?me, La Traviata, and The Marriage of Figaro.Each book in the library includes the complete opera on 2 CDs, featuring world-class performances and orchestras; the complete libretto, plus its English translation; an exciting history of the opera; a biography of the composer; a synopsis of the story, broken down by act and scene; and dozens of photographs and drawings depicting performances, singers, sets, costumes, and more.Carmen features Grace Bumbry, Jon Vickers, Mirella Freni, and Kostas Paskalis, with Rafael Fru?beck de Burgos conducting the Orchestra of the Th??tre National de l'Op?ra.La Boh?me features Nicolai Gedda and Mirella Freni, with Thomas Schippers conducting the Orchestro e Coro del Teatro dell'Opera di Roma.La Traviata features Beverly Sills, Nicolai Gedda, and Rolando Panerai, with Aldo Ceccato conducting the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.The Marriage of Figaro features Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Heather Harper, Judith Blegen, Geraint Evans, Teresa Berganza, and Birgit Finnil?, with Daniel Barenboim conducting the English Chamber Orchestra.Listen. Enjoy. Learn.Also available as individual titles.
Best Music Writing 2011
By Alex Ross, Daphne Carr
Best Music Writing has become one of the most eagerly awaited annuals of them all. Celebrating the year in music writing by gathering a rich array of essays, missives, and musings on every style of music from rock to hip-hop to R&B to jazz to pop to blues, it is essential reading for anyone who loves great music and accomplished writing. Scribes of every imaginable sort,novelists, poets, journalists, musicians, are gathered to create a multi-voiced snapshot of the year in music writing that, like the music it illuminates, is every bit as thrilling as it is riveting.
Broadway Musicals, Revised And Updated
By Frank Vlastnik, Ken Bloom
A fully updated edition of the acclaimed and bestselling Broadway Musicals, now featuring an expanded off-Broadway section Broadway Musicals is a richly illustrated, and information-packed celebration of the most popular and enduring Broadway shows of all time. Each show is featured in a detailed, photo-filled chapter that includes expert commentary, special features on the creators and performers, plot synopses, cast and song lists, production details, and backstage anecdotes. Also included are sidebars on Broadway flops, advertising posters, the greatest scores, and more. This edition includes several shows not in the original hardcover edition such as Avenue Q, The Drowsy Chaperone, and Wicked. An expanded off-Broadway section showcases beloved shows such as I Love You, You're Perfect, NowChange and Little Mary Sunshine. Praise for Broadway Musicals: 'This book is a joy from cover to cover.' ?Dallas Morning News'This book is a must for fans of musical theater.' ?Hartford Courant 'A nostalgic treasure trove.' ?Seattle Times'For any theater fan or musical buff it is a perfect abridged education.' ?Minneapolis Star Tribune'Broadway Musicals is a visual delight.' ?Palm Beach Post
Becoming Jimi Hendrix
By Brad Schreiber, Steven Roby
Becoming Jimi Hendrix traces"Jimmy's&rdquo early musical roots, from a harrowing, hand-to-mouth upbringing in a poverty-stricken, broken Seattle home to his early discovery of the blues to his stint as a reluctant recruit of the 101st Airborne who was magnetically drawn to the rhythm and blues scene in Nashville. As a sideman, Hendrix played with the likes of Little Richard, Ike and Tina Turner, the Isley Brothers, and Sam & Dave- but none knew what to make of his spotlight-stealing rock guitar experimentation, the likes of which had never been heard before. From 1962 to 1966, on the rough and tumble club circuit, Hendrix learned to please a crowd, deal with racism, and navigate shady music industry characters, all while evolving his own astonishing style. Finally, in New York's Greenwich Village, two key women helped him survive, and his discovery in a tiny basement club in 1966 led to Hendrix instantly being heralded as a major act in Europe before he returned to America, appeared at the Monterey Pop Festival, and entered the pantheon of rock's greatest musicians. Becoming Jimi Hendrix is based on over one hundred interviews with those who knew Hendrix best during his lean years, more than half of whom have never spoken about him on the record. Utilizing court transcripts, FBI files, private letters, unpublished photos, and U.S. Army documents, this is the story of a young musician who overcame enormous odds, a past that drove him to outbursts of violence, and terrible professional and personal decisions that complicated his life before his untimely demise.
By Paul Oliver
In the 1920s, Southern record companies ventured to cities like Dallas, Atlanta, and New Orleans, where they set up primitive recording equipment in makeshift studios. They brought in street singers, medicine show performers, pianists from the juke joints and barrelhouses. The music that circulated through Southern work camps, prison farms, and vaudeville shows would be lost to us if it hadn't been captured on location by these performers and recorders. Eminent blues historian Paul Oliver uncovers these folk traditions and the circumstances under which they were recorded, rescuing the forefathers of the blues who were lost before they even had a chance to be heard. A careful excavation of the earliest recordings of the blues by one of its foremost experts, Barrelhouse Blues expands our definition of that most American style of music.
Black Tooth Grin
By Zac Crain
Black Tooth Grin is the first biography of Dimebag" Darrell Abbott, the Texas-bred guitarist of the heavy metal band Pantera, who was murdered onstage in 2004 by a deranged fan,24 years to the day after John Lennon met a similar fate. Darrell Abbott began as a Kiss-inspired teenage prodigy who won dozens of local talent contests. With his brother, drummer Vinnie Abbott, he formed Pantera, becoming one of the most popular bands of the '90s and selling millions of albums to an intensely devoted fan base. While the band's music was aggressive, Dime" was outgoing, gregarious, and adored by everyone who knew him. From Pantera's heyday to their implosion following singer Phil Anselmo's heroin addiction to Darrell's tragic end, Black Tooth Grin is a moving portrait of a great artist.
Book of Rhymes
By Adam Bradley
If asked to list the greatest innovators of modern American poetry, few of us would think to include Jay-Z or Eminem in their number. And yet hip hop is the source of some of the most exciting developments in verse today. The media uproar in response to its controversial lyrical content has obscured hip hop's revolution of poetic craft and experience: Only in rap music can the beat of a song render poetic meter audible, allowing an MC's wordplay to move a club-full of eager listeners. Examining rap history's most memorable lyricists and their inimitable techniques, literary scholar Adam Bradley argues that we must understand rap as poetry or miss the vanguard of poetry today. Book of Rhymes explores America's least understood poets, unpacking their surprisingly complex craft, and according rap poetry the respect it deserves.
Bill Graham Presents
By Bill Graham, Robert Greenfield
As a child, Bill Graham fled Europe to escape Hitler's armies. He grew up on the streets of New York and in the dining rooms of the hotels in the Catskills. After failing as an actor, he headed for San Francisco right before the Summer of Love where he founded the Fillmore and launched the rock icons of a generation- Janis Joplin, Otis Redding, Jefferson Airplane, Cream, the Grateful Dead, and more. He was a complex, caring, compassionate whirlwind of energy who rock stars either loved- or hated.In his own voice and those of the people who knew him- Jerry Garcia, Keith Richards, Grace Slick, Ken Kesey, Eric Clapton, Pete Townshend, and Carlos Santana- we hear Bill's story as well as the scoop on the major events in rock for more than three decades, ending with his tragic death in a 1991 helicopter crash. Gritty, moving, funny, and always fascinating, Bill Graham Presents is the inside story of the explosive and unforgettable man who created the business of rock.
Back In The Day
By Darrin Keith Bastfield
A legend after a bullet killed him at the age of twenty-five, Tupac Shakur was the most riveting rap musician of his day. Far from being the insolent "gangsta" the press put forth, Shakur was fiercely intelligent, fearless, and determined to make a mark. Darrin Bastfield grew up with him in a rough Baltimore neighbourhood. In this vivid memoir, Bastfield reveals Tupac Shakur as the teenager he really was: bound for greatness.In tight, edgy prose, Bastfield recalls seven years of friendship. Shakur, new in town, a skinny thirteen-year-old in shabby clothes, may have looked uncool, but he blew the school away at a talent show, an electrifying performance. It was at the Baltimore School for the Arts, however, where things really started to happen-an encounter with Salt-N-Pepa, the wild night of the 1988 senior prom. Shakur and Bastfield lived through it together, and in this memoir, it all comes alive again.
By William Benzon
Why does the brain create music? In Beethoven's Anvil, cognitive scientist and jazz musician William Benzon finds the key to music's function in the very complexity of musical experience. Music demands that our symbol-processing capacities, motor skills, and emotional and communicative skills all work in close coordination- not only within our own heads but also with the heads (and bodies) of others. Music is at once deeply personal and highly social, highly disciplined yet open to emotional nuance and interpretation. It's precisely this coordination of different mental functions, Benzon argues, that underlies our deep need to create and participate in music. At once daring and scholarly, this remarkable book offers a sweeping vision of a vital, underappreciated force in our minds and our culture.
By Donald Clarke
Certainly no singer has been more mythologized and more misunderstood than Billie Holiday, who helped to create much of the mystique herself with her autobiography, Lady Sings the Blues . "Now, finally, we have a definitive biography," said Booklist of Donald Clarke's Billie Holiday , "by a deeply compassionate, respectful, and open-minded biographer [whose] portrait embraces every facet of Holiday's paradoxical nature, from her fierceness to her vulnerability, her childlikeness to her innate elegance and amazing strength." Clarke was given unrivaled access to a treasure trove of interviews from the 1970s,interviews with those who knew Lady Day from her childhood in the streets and good-time houses of Baltimore through the early days of success in New York and into the years of fame, right up to her tragic decline and death at the age of forty-four. Clarke uses these interviews to separate fact from fiction and, in the words of the Seattle Times , "finally sets us straight. . .evoking her world in all its anguish, triumph, force and irony." Newsday called this "a thoroughly riveting account of Holiday and her milieu." The New York Times raved that it "may be the most thoroughly valuable of the many books on Holiday," and Helen Oakley Dance in JazzTimes said, "We should probably have to wait a long time for another life of Billie Holiday to supersede Donald Clarke's achievement."
By Aaron Neville, Art Neville, Charles Neville, Cyril Neville, David Ritz
Born to a music-loving family, the Neville brothers grew up immersed in the sounds and culture of New Orleans, and the blended rhythms of the city are reflected in their wide range of musical styles. The result, like their native city, is a rich gumbo of flavors: Art, with his keyboard wizardry Aaron, with his angelic voice Charles, a spiritual seeker and jazz devotee and Cyril, whose passion for music matches the intensity of his politics. In The Brothers, each tells his story candidly, recounting the early hits, the problems with drugs and the law, and the circuitous route to success. Along the way, the brothers tell the story of the New Orleans culture as well,the birth of rhythm and blues, the folklore behind the fabulous Mardi Gras Indians, the painful racial climate, and the family whose legacy is now a part of our musical history.
By Victor Bockris
Here, accompanied by dozens of unique photographs, are the very best of Victor Bockris's infamous interviews, essays, and observations on the stars of downtown Manhattan in the 1970s and 1980s. The internationally acclaimed biographer Bockris was there as a witness, friend, collabourator, and co-conspirator. Some of the stars were founding members of Beat or Punk, others were just passing through. But all of them,rockers, rebels, artists, and intellectuals,revealed more to Bockris than they did to any other writer: Allen Ginsberg, Richard Hell, Andy Warhol, Robert Mapplethorpe, Debbie Harry, William Burroughs, Patti Smith, Marianne Faithfull, Keith Richards, Terry Southern, Martin Amis, and Susan Sontag. Bockris's conclusion,that Punk owed the Beats a big debt and that the Beats were in turn re-animated by the Punks,is argued from the perspective of someone who was in the thick of it, and who loved every minute of it.
By Eric Nisenson
Once a thriving body of innovative and fluid music, jazz is now the victim of destructive professional and artistic forces, says Eric Nisenson. Corruption by marketers, appropriation by the mainstream, superficial media portrayal, and sheer lack of skill have all contributed to the demise of this venerable art form. Nisenson persuasively describes how the entire jazz "industry" is controlled by a select cadre with a choke hold on the most vital components of the music. As the listening culture has changed, have spontaneity and improvisation been sacrificed? You can agree or disagree with Nisenson's thesis and arguments, but as Booklist says, "his passion is engrossing."
By Chip Deffaa
"Somebody has to pay the dues," says LaVern Baker. Here are the remarkable stories of six dazzlingly talented performers who blazed the R & B trail,the story of the performers' music and also of their struggle against racism and financial exploitation: Ruth Brown and LaVern Baker, two of the most popular female black singers of the 1950s Little Jimmy Scott, whom Madonna calls the only singer who ever really made her cry Charles Brown, master of the club blues" style Floyd Dixon, a more rambunctious fellow-traveller and the earthy, urbane Jimmy Witherspoon, who recorded some of the biggest R & B hits ever.
By Ian Johnston
A widely acclaimed biography of one of rock's most compelling, uncompromising and influential singer-songwriters, Ian Johnston's BAD SEED offers a superb overview of Nick Cave's career to date. Through Cave's fronting of the incendiary bands The Birthday Party and The Bad Seeds, producing music of unfettered expression and explosive intensity, to his creative collaborations outside of the rock industry in film and literature, BAD SEED illustrates a life lived in barely controlled chaos: and unravels the motivation and unique appeal of a reluctant icon whose songs, according to the Rolling Stones, possess "the authority of the most primal kind of myth."