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The music of Queen and powerhouse lead singer Freddie Mercury are best experienced with the volume turned all the way up. Alfonso Casas's Freddie Mercury delivers a sonorous homage to the formidable singer and the turning points that produced a game-changing body of music that continues to inspire fans around the globe. First published in Spain and now available worldwide, this luminous work covers Freddie's three "births": his birth as Farrokh Bulsara in Zanzibar; his adoption of the last name of Mercury and the launch of Queen with Brian May and Roger Taylor; and the emergence of the lasting legend after Freddie's death at the age of forty-five. Casas's evocative illustrations highlight the key moments in the singer's transformation from child prodigy to superstar, bringing to life the bold innovator who broke free of his conventional upbringing. Chronicling events from Freddie's marriage to Mary Austin and early fame in London's 1970s glam scene, to the making of multiple megahits (including the six-minute chart-topper "Bohemian Rhapsody"), to his final years in a lasting relationship with Jim Hutton, Freddie Mercury is an exhilarating, poignant portrait of a creative genius who lived life to the hilt.
Wilson Pickett was arguably the greatest male soul screamer of the 1960s and '70s. Well known for his unprecedented string of Soul hits, including "In the Midnight Hour," "Land of 1,000 Dances," and "Mustang Sally," Pickett has sold millions of albums, and tens of millions of singles. A first ballot inductee into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, he collaborated with some of the biggest names in '60s and '70s pop, rock, and soul, recorded for the most renowned labels in soul and R&B, and was a legendary presence on stage, his performances frequently culminating in stage invasions by frenzied audience members of all colors eager to bask (and dance) in his radiant aura. Equally well known for his personal troubles, his musical brilliance and success - like that of so many other superstars - Pickett's career was punctuated by violence, drug and alcohol addictions, and fits of erratic and wild behavior. In In the Midnight Hour, veteran music journalist and biographer Tony Fletcher not only tells the full story of Wilson Pickett's incredible career, and troubled life, but goes beyond the individual anecdotes to illustrate how Pickett's journey - geographic, musical, and cultural - was emblematic of both that of his generation of southern black men, and that of black American music in the second half of the twentieth century. He grew up in Alabama under Jim Crow in '40s where he experienced the peak of the gospel circuit before moving north to Detroit as part of the Second Great Migration, where he recorded for the nascent Tamla/Motown label. In the 60s he participated in integrated recording sessions for Stax and Atlantic, before moving back to Alabama where he took part in sessions at Muscle Shoals that made the studios signature sound famous, and at the beginning of the '70s, found himself in Philadelphia where he was instrumental in the birth of the Philly Soul sound. While centered around Wilson Pickett and his music, In the Midnight Hour will also be about the roller-coaster journey he took in his life, the social upheavals that surrounded him, the genre he helped shape along the way, and the pitfalls of the fame that success brought him. The first biography of one the most famous, influential, and fascinating figures in soul and R&B, In the Midnight Hour will find an eager audience among fans of Wilson Pickett, and soul and R&B music in general, as well as readers interested in the development of black music during the second half of the twentieth century.
In this philosophical biography, Liel Leibovitz looks at what it is that makes Leonard Cohen an enduring international figure in the cultural imagination. Born into a Canadian religious Jewish family, for years a reclusive lyricist on the Greek island of Hydra, known for his bold political commentary, his devotion to Buddhist thought and his later despair over contemporary Zionism, Cohen hardly follows the rules of a conventional rock star. Yet the prophetic themes of his music, often filled with pessimism and apocalyptic visions, prove redemptive to an audience that spans generations. As Leonard Cohen requires, this is a passionate and personal evocation of a man who appeals to the inner spirit of his fervent followers.
Beginning from the unlikely vantage point of Venice in the aftermath of fascism and World War II, this book explores operatic production in the city's nascent postwar culture as a lens onto the relationship between opera and politics in the twentieth century. Both opera and Venice in the middle of the century are often talked about in strikingly similar terms: as museums locked in the past and blind to the future. These cliches are here overturned: perceptions of crisis were in fact remarkably productive for opera, and despite being physically locked in the past, Venice was undergoing a flourishing of avant-garde activity. Focusing on a local musical culture, Harriet Boyd-Bennett recasts some of the major composers, works, stylistic categories and narratives of twentieth-century music. The study provides fresh understandings of works by composers as diverse as Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Verdi, Britten and Nono.
The Bedford (Amateur) Musical Society, now Bedford Choral Society, was formed in 1867. Its beginnings were not auspicious - an article in a local newspaper reported that 'no one felt very sanguine about the success of the proposed Society ... the idea being that musical people were a quarrelsome lot and could not hold together for any length of time.' Despite this, the Society has had a long and almost continuous history and is still thriving today. This volume records the characters who have shaped the Society through the years, the varied musical programmes and the links with well-known performers and musicians. It includes the BBC Music Department's move to Bedford early in the Second World War and its support for the Society as it re-established itself. The volume holds an introduction by Donald Burrows, Professor of Music at the Open University and a leading scholar of the music of George Frideric Handel. Professor Burrows provides a historical setting for the development of the Society within the context of national musical developments. MICHAEL BENSON was educated at St Michael's College, Tenbury Wells and later attended Hereford Cathedral School and Theological College. Michael has been a member of Bedford Choral Society since 1977 and was General Secretary from 2002 to 2008. Now retired, he spent most of his working life at the City & Guilds of London Institute, and was involved with the administration of technical examinations. .
Bobby Denton's career was started by legendary American Bandstand icon Dick Clark. This is a story of tragedy and overcoming by the Alabama Music Hall of Fame singing star and Alabama Senator for 34 years. Bobby Denton began singing and playing the guitar at a very early age. He performed on radio and various musical events around the northwest Alabama area In 1956, a small recording company was organized and a short time later, Tune Records recorded a song called, "A Fallen Star" sung by teenager Bobby Denton. This record is believed to be the first master tape recording from which a commercial record was pressed in the state of Alabama. Although Bobby's recording of the song was the first, it was overshadowed by other artists who recorded the song who were promoted by major record companies. Bobby Denton recorded other songs for Tune Records before joining promoter Judd Phillips. Judd was the brother of Sam Phillips who discovered Elvis Presley and founded Sun Records of Memphis, Tennessee. Bobby recorded four songs for Judd Records that had nationwide distribution. He performed on the Dick Clark Show from New York City and his recordings of "Sweet and Innocent" and "Back to School" were big hits in several areas of the country. He also toured with big named stars around the nation before he left the business in 1960. After almost 40 years of being completely out of the music business, Bobby Denton returned to music in 1997. He recorded a 13-song album of old favorite gospel songs called "My God and I." In 1998, he released another gospel album called Hope, and in 1999 an album called Love Songs was released. His latest release is Amazing Grace. Bobby records and performs his music for personal satisfaction with the intent of providing his audiences with the good feeling of hope and a renewal of faith.
Forty years in the business...six gold & platinum U.S. albums...classic songs like (Don'tFear) The Reaper, Godzilla, Burnin' For You, Astronomy and E.T.I. Donald "BuckDharma" Roeser, Eric Bloom, Allen Lanier, Albert Bouchard & Joe Bouchard comprised one of the great stadium acts of the '70s & '80s. BOC were heavy enough to duke it out with Kiss, Rush, Aerosmith, Ted Nugent & Black Sabbath, yet smart, funny, ironic & jaded enough to please the tough New York critics.Agents of Fortune examines the complicated early days of the band, graphically demonstrating the showbiz sweat that goes into making a successful act. The book is centred around the peerless intellectual quality of the songs - made entertaining by the band's psychotropic & ghoulish humour; its interest in all manner of conspiracy theories, cults, monsters, vampires, UFOs, foul play, arcane spiritualism, alchemy, love lost & love buried, science fiction & friction.Popoff draws on his personal interviews with Roeser, Bloom, Albert & Joe Bouchard, along with drummer Bobby Rondinelli, legendary band producer Murray Krugman & BOC expert Bolle Gregmar. For insight into the band's fantastic lyrical world, Popoff went right to the source, the writers of the BOC classics highlighting their creativity through the author's countless interviews with Sandy Pearlman (manager during the golden years), Richard Meltzer, John Shirley, cover artists Greg Scott and Ioannis, as well as the late Helen Wheels and David Roter. An essential read for Blue Oyster Cult devotees.
Lavishly illustrated, respected journalist Harvey Kubernik charts Leonard Cohen's extraordinary career in detail, placing his literary and musical achievements within the context of his life. From his beginnings as a writer and poet, through his classic albums of the sixties and seventies up to his triumphant recent tours, every stage of Cohen's remarkable life is expertly analysed. Includes more than 200 photos and the thoughts, memories and comments of those who have both worked with him and the many who have been inspired by this most unique of artists.
Fugal invention has proved a successful line of analytical inquiry in recent studies of repertoires from Josquin to J. S. Bach. Alan Howard brings similar insights to the music of Henry Purcell, and proposes the first analytical approach to his music to examine compositional methods alongside historically contemporary theory, focusing particularly on Purcell's 'artificial' approach to imitative counterpoint. Through this methodology Howard challenges previous responses to Purcell's music that portrayed him as fundamentally conservative. This study offers fresh insights into the musical world in which Purcell lived and worked and situates Purcell's compositional concerns in the broader context of notions of artifice in Restoration culture. Howard thereby offers both a fresh analytical approach - to Purcell's early instrumental works and to his later concerted vocal music - and a critique of the reception history surrounding the fantazias and sonatas in particular.
Vagn Holmboe (1909-96), was one of the most important composers of his era, and arguably the most important Danish composer after Carl Nielsen. A composer for over 60 years, and a teacher for more than 30, he wrote over 300 compositions in nearly every musical genre, music criticism, many other articles and two other books. Here, in a volume intended for the general reader, he discusses the nature of music, from the point of view of the composer, the performer and the listener. Where do musical ideas come from? What are composers' working methods, and how much are they really aware of them? What is the role of performers, and what sort of freedom do they have in interpreting music? What do listeners do in listening to music? What, essentially, is the musical experience? Professor Paul Rapoport contributes a lengthy introduction to this book, although, as he points out, this is not a book about Vagn Holmboe nor a book addressed solely to musicians ... Holmboe's prose, like his music, is addressed to his fellow human beings, whoever and wherever they may be'.
Fleetwood Mac was a triumph from the beginning-their first album was the UK's bestselling album of 1968. After some low points-when founder Peter Green left, some fans felt that the band continuing was sacrilege-Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks joined, and the band's 1977 album Rumours became one of history's immortals, a true classic that remained in the charts for years and public affection forever. In the press, the ethereal Californian Stevie Nicks, the tormented rocker Lindsey Buckingham, the dignified English rose Christine McVie, the blunt-speaking John McVie, and the loquacious Mick Fleetwood have all regularly been astoundingly candid. This collection of interviews across the entirety of Fleetwood Mac's career features articles from such celebrated publications as Crawdaddy, New Musical Express, Circus, Creem, Mojo, Goldmine, Classic Rock, Blender, and Elle, as well as interviews that have never previously appeared in print. In it, readers will learn the Fleetwood Mac story from the band members' own mouths, and experience it contemporaneously rather than through hindsight.
Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) is recognized the world over as a composer of musical masterpieces exhibiting heroic strength, particularly in the face of his increasing deafness from ca. 1798. By 1818, the Viennese composer had begun carrying blank booklets with him, for his acquaintances to jot their sides of conversations, while he answered aloud. Often, he himself used the pocket-sized booklets to make shopping lists and other reminders, including occasional early sketches for his compositions. Today, 139 of these booklets survive, covering the years 1818 up to the composer's death in 1827 and including such topics as music, history, politics, art, literature, theatre, religion, and education as perceived on a day-to-day basis in post-Napoleonic Europe. An East German edition, begun in the 1960s and essentially complete by 2001, represents a diplomatic transcription of these documents. It is a masterpiece of pure scholarship but is difficult to use for anyone who is not a specialist. Moreover, Beethoven scholarship has moved on significantly since the long-ranging genesis of the German edition. These important booklets are here translated into English in their entirety for the first time. The volumes in this series include an updated editorial apparatus, with revised and expanded notes and many new footnotes exclusive to this edition, and brand new introductions, which together place many of the quickly changing conversational topics into context. Due to the editor's many years of research in Vienna, his acquaintance with its history and topography, as well as his familiarity with obscure documentary resources, this edition represents an entirely new venture in source studies - vitally informative for scholars not only in music but also in a wide variety of disciplines. At the same time, these often lively and compelling conversations are now finally accessible for the English-speaking music lover or history buff who might want to dip into them and hear what Beethoven and his friends were discussing at the next table. THEODORE ALBRECHT is Professor of Musicology at Kent State University, Ohio.
Metallica: The Stories Behind the Songs explores the writing and recording of the band's greatest records, including classic albums such as Master of Puppets (1986) and Metallica ('the black album') (1991), right through to 2016's Hardwired... to Self-Destruct. This is the perfect book for any metalhead who wants to get an insight into the creative process of one of the heaviest bands of all time.
(Book). Jimi Hendrix was such an extraordinary guitarist, it can be easy to forget that just as much passion, soul, and precision went into his lyrics. Inspired by Bob Dylan, Hendrix was a fearless lyrical innovator, willing to let his imagination guide him to landscapes hitherto unexplored within the realm of pop music. From the existential euphoria of "I Don't Love Today" to the elusive beauty of "Little Wing" to the psychedelic blues of "My Friend" to the otherworldly "1983 (A Merman I Should Turn to Be)," his lyrics remain among the greatest in the pantheon of rock, infused with the same inventiveness, virtuosity, and courage that informed his guitar playing. Here are all the words to the Hendrix classics you've rocked along to for years, as well as unpublished songs from Valleys of Neptune and other hitherto undiscovered sources. Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyrics Book, compiled by Janie L. Hendrix, is extraordinarily personal. It includes numerous examples of Jimi's handwritten lyrics, often scribbled on hotel stationery, as well as photos of Jimi to accompany every song. Much of this material has never been seen before. Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyrics Book will give you a glimpse of the lyricist behind the songs, a songwriter whose words were just as searing as his solos.
When Freddie Mercury died in 1991, the music world lost one of its most flamboyant characters, as well as a supremely talented writer and vocalist. Best known as the lead singer with Queen, his amazing four-octave voice was a distinctive element in the band's unique sound which resulted in more than a dozen million-selling albums over three decades. As the band's main songwriter he was responsible for some of their greatest hits including Killer Queen, We Are The Champions and Bohemian Rhapsody. Published to co-incide with what would have been Freddie's 70th birthday in November 2016 and the film of his life story currently in production.A definitive retrospective on the life and work of Freddie Mercury, both as the lead singer with Queen and in his much-acclaimed solo capacity. Fully illustrated throughout, including archive memorabilia and many previously unpublished photographs.
More than just a story about the personal journey of one of South Africa's most beloved music icons, this extraordinary memoir of PJ Powers - or Thandeka, as she was affectionately renamed by Soweto crowds - is set against the turbulent backdrop of South Africa's recent political history. It features a gallery of political leaders and international celebrities, including the likes of Nelson Mandela, Graga Machel, Chris Hani, Joaquim Chissano, Queen Elizabeth II, Brenda Fassie, Sharon Stone and Robert De Niro.
On Republic Day 1982, a white rock and roll band called Hotline, wearing stonewashed jeans and sporting big hair, took an accidental sho't left into Soweto - a detour that forever changed the life of their lead singer, PJ Powers. Hotline was the first all-white rock and roll band to "cross over" into highly segregated apartheid South Africa, making international headlines in the process. The prolific Powers went on to accomplish extraordinary heights as a solo artist with countless gold and platinum discs.
Here I Am, written with Marianne Thamm, is an intimate and hilarious account of the life and times of one of this country's most recognisable and enduring performers. From the dizzying heights of international stardom to the dark depths of her struggle with alcohol, this is a must-read to explore the heady mix of politics and music of the time.
Radiohead Complete is the definitive collection of Radiohead songs, including every song ever released by the British rock band (at time of publication). This artist-approved 368-page book comprises 154 songs, including B-sides and rarities, all with lyrics and guitar chords. It also features 48 pages of artwork by the band's album artist Stanley Donwood, who also designed the exclusive cover artwork.
This new biography of Maurice Ravel (1875-1937), by one of the leading scholars of nineteenth- and twentieth-century French music, is based on a wealth of written and oral evidence, some newly translated and some derived from interviews with the composer's friends and associates. As well as describing the circumstances in which Ravel composed, the book explores new evidence to present radical views of the composer's background and upbringing, his notorious failure in the Prix de Rome, his incisive and often combative character, his sexual preferences, and his long final illness. It also contains the most detailed account so far published of his hugely successful American tour of 1928. The world of Maurice Ravel-including friendships (and some fallings-out) with Debussy, Faure, Diaghilev, Gershwin, and Toscanini-is deftly uncovered in this sensitive portrait.
A remarkable memoir from the legendary drummer with The Police. Stewart Copeland is a genuine rock legend. As the drummer with The Police he was part of the biggest rock band in the world. They sold over 50 million records, won 2 Brits and 5 Grammys and were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. When they reformed in 2007 they played to nearly 4 million fans on a record-breaking world tour which grossed over $400m. But his time with The Police is just a tiny part of his story. Growing up in Lebanon, unaware that his dad was a major US spy. Being best friends with Kim Philby's son. Singing in the choir in Wells Cathedral. Performing arts college in San Diego. Drumming with prog-rock gods Curved Air. Appearing on TOTP as Klark Kent in full camoflage make-up. Spray painting The Police logos around London at night. Rock stardom and fan obsessions. Filming experimental movies with a pygmy tribe. Playing polo against Prince Charles. Recording the score to Rumblefish with Francis Ford Coppola looking on. Composing operas. Reforming the band. Arguing with Sting. Embarking on one of the biggest tours of all time as he approaches sixty. These are just a few of the episodes covered in this revelatory autobiography. It is destined to be a must-read for thousands of Police fans and music enthusiasts. Strange Things Happen is an unforgettable memoir from a musician who has earned his place in rock history.
'...a fabulous book' Chris Evans (BBC Radio 2) A stunning collection of rare and unseen photographs and stories charting Ed Sheeran's rise to global superstar, by long-time collaborator Christie Goodwin. Featuring a foreword and additional photo captions by Ed's father, John Sheeran."When I first met Ed Sheeran he was unknown and unsigned - just a young busker trying to make it big. But I could see something special in Ed. I agreed to photograph him for free to help him on his way to the top. That was the beginning of a 10-year collaboration, with the two of us crossing paths as Ed became one of the biggest stars on the planet - a story told here, through my camera. Including images and stories I'm sharing for the first time, with additional captions by Ed's father John, this is an up-close and intimate view of Ed Sheeran." Christie Goodwin
‘Astonishing, soul-baring – the must-read memoir by rock’s greatest
survivor’ DAILY MAIL
'The rock memoir of the decade' Daily Mail In his first and only official autobiography, music icon Elton John reveals the truth about his extraordinary life, which is also the subject of the smash-hit film Rocketman. The result is Me - the joyously funny, honest and moving story of the most enduringly successful singer/songwriter of all time. ______________ Read by actor and star of Rocketman, Taron Egerton, with an introduction and epilogue read by Elton John. Christened Reginald Dwight, he was a shy boy with Buddy Holly glasses who grew up in the London suburb of Pinner and dreamed of becoming a pop star. By the age of twenty-three, he was performing his first gig in America, facing an astonished audience in his bright yellow dungarees, a star-spangled T-shirt and boots with wings. Elton John had arrived and the music world would never be the same again. His life has been full of drama, from the early rejection of his work with songwriting partner Bernie Taupin to spinning out of control as a chart-topping superstar; from half-heartedly trying to drown himself in his LA swimming pool to disco-dancing with the Queen; from friendships with John Lennon, Freddie Mercury and George Michael to setting up his AIDS Foundation. All the while, Elton was hiding a drug addiction that would grip him for over a decade. In Me Elton also writes powerfully about getting clean and changing his life, about finding love with David Furnish and becoming a father. In a voice that is warm, humble and open, this is Elton on his music and his relationships, his passions and his mistakes. This is a story that will stay with you, by a living legend. ______________ 'Self-deprecating, funny . . . You cannot help but enjoy his company throughout, temper tantrums and all' The Times 'Chatty, gossipy, amusing and at times brutally candid' Telegraph
The Times Book of the Year 'There's no tougher a mind, no more tender a voice than Paul Simon, and there's no better man than Robert Hilburn to decipher the hardwiring of this hyperintellect...great songs can never be fully explained, but the great man on his way to find those songs surely can.' - Bono Through such hits as "The Sound of Silence," "Bridge Over Troubled Water," "Still Crazy After All These Years," and "Graceland," Paul Simon has spoken to us in songs for a half-century about alienation, doubt, survival, and faith in ways that have established him as one of the most honoured and beloved songwriters in American pop music history. Yet Simon has refused to talk to potential biographers and urged those close to him to also remain silent. But Simon not only agreed to talk to biographer Robert Hilburn for what has amounted to more than sixty hours, he also encouraged his family and friends to sit down for in-depth interviews. Paul Simon is a revealing account of the challenges and sacrifices of artistry at the highest level. He has also lived a roller-coaster life of extreme ups and downs. We not only learn Paul's unrelenting drive to achieve artistry, but also the subsequent struggles to protect that artistry against distractions - fame, wealth, marriage, divorce, drugs, complacency, public rejection, self-doubt - that have frequently derailed pop stars and each of which he encountered. From dominating the charts with Art Garfunkel and a successful reinvention as a solo artist, to his multiple marriages and highly publicized second divorce from Carrie Fisher, this book covers all aspects of this American icon. 'When it comes to writing songs, no one does it better than Paul Simon. Robert Hilburn's is a wise and winning account of our most nimble, nuanced, and numinous poet-musician.' -Paul Muldoon 'A tantalizing look into the mind and writing process of the man who is arguably the finest craftsman of the American popular song since the Gershwin brothers, this book will delight any Paul Simon fan or student of popular culture.' -Linda Ronstadt
Carmine Appice (born December 15, 1946) is an American drummer and percussionist most commonly associated with the rock genre of music. He has received classical music training, and was influenced early-on by the work of jazz drummers Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa. Appice is best known for his associations with Vanilla Fudge, Cactus, the power trio Beck, Bogert & Appice, Rod Stewart, King Kobra, and Blue Murder, which also featured John Sykes of Thin Lizzy fame, and Tony Franklin of The Firm. He was inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame in 2014. Appice is credited with influencing later rock drummers including Iron Maiden's Nicko McBrain; Aerosmith's Joey Kramer; Roger Taylor of Queen; Phil Collins of Genesis; Rush's Neil Peart; Motley Crue's Tommy Lee; Slayer's Dave Lombardo; Richard Christy; Chris Grainger; David Kinkade; Ray Mehlbaum; Led Zeppelin's John Bonham; Ian Paice of Deep Purple; Robb Reiner; and, Eric Singer.
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