A creative who's also worked on the other side of the business as a label owner, Stanley digs too into the rise of music's ancillary industries, such as the pop press ("consumers wanted … to feel closer to their idols," he writes) and music-based television programming...
...his narrative is focused on not eating what the rest of the crew is eating, not sleeping where others sleep...he waits in his cabin alone, wondering what the hell is going on. Dyer might as well be on a cruise ship, and he knows it.
In the end, none of these die-hard fans comes closer to finding the real Dylan, but they discover over and over just why Dylan’s music means so much to them.
It’s a difficult book to encapsulate simply...Not to be skimmed. A cogent and genuine argument for the true democratization of online culture.
“Savage Harvest” turns into a taut thriller, but it gets off to a shaky start. Cast adrift in the Arafura Sea, Rockefeller leaves a colleague clinging to their boat and swims toward shore...Quickly, however, his book settles down and his reporting takes hold, drawing a vivid portrait of the world of the Asmat people...
Those with even the slightest curiosity about history, culture, civilization, and the very human trait to survive and preserve at all costs will devour this book with the enthusiasm and fascination it rightly deserves.
...it is not clear that he has looked closely at any Whistler paintings since that early class trip. He certainly does not bring the art into focus for the reader.
This new book is living history: The subjects, of course, are alive, but the era Geesen describes feels like the worst of Soviet times. Just like the ski runs at Sochi, the arc of Russian politics in the Putin era point in only one direction. Downhill.
Conspicuously lacking chapter breaks, prefaced by a photo of a naked toddler in sunglasses...formatted willy-nilly...by turns intoxicating, indulgent, hilarious...and straight-up dull, Morrissey’s memoir earns its pithy title. For better, for worse, for nothing at all, Autobiography is a catalogue of everything “Morrissey,”...
Respect Yourself is not the first history of Stax...but Memphis-born Robert Gordon writes with infectious brio and devotion, drawing on a mass of interviews for what is an engrossing, sometimes salutary narrative. Ike Hayes's golden Cadillac remains a prime exhibit at the Stax History of Soul Music.
Catherine Merridale’s Red Fortress is a tour de force, as readable as it is extensively researched. It never flags through nearly 10 centuries of Russian, Soviet and post-Soviet history.
Fosse is filled with the kind of inside detail that comes of substantial research, and vivid descriptions that turn the research into a sort of movie in your head.
“Tune In” pays close attention to the many American influences on the young pre-Beatles...They hit adolescence just as rock ’n’ roll records became buyable, and “Tune In” keenly chronicles the favorites that they would draw on or recycle, even for their name: Beatles was a play on Buddy Holly’s Crickets, simple as that.
He was the only reporter present at the historic Folsom Prison show in 1968, and he interviewed Cash over the years up to his final days. The result is the most authoritative and revealing portrait to date of the most chronicled figure in country-music history.
Mr. Gardiner writes in a lively, conversational fashion, if not always a syntactically correct or felicitous one. Dangling participles and other detached modifiers abound.
Mainly his letters, as selected and edited by Nigel Simeone, are less about music or ideas or the wide world than they are about Bernstein's breathless aspirations and mercurial ups and downs...But it's an invaluable resource, and the quest itself continues to fascinate and to matter.
...40 years after asking if we were reelin’ in the years, Mr. Fagen proves with his generous collection that his wry voice is still worth listening to, with or without a killer rhythm section.
Greig’s understanding of Freud’s place in art history...is...banal, as are his analyses of the connections between life and art...
...none of his missteps have dimmed the Ellington legend. Seldom overtly political, he preferred to lead by example...“Duke” humanizes a man whom history has kept on a pedestal.
There’s the Yugoslavian janitor who studied for 12 years to earn his classics degree...There’s no judgment, just observation and in many cases reverence, making for an inspiring reading and visual experience.