Home Read News Next Week in Music | May 3-9 • New Books

Next Week in Music | May 3-9 • New Books

The Who, Bob Dylan, Duran Duran, Roxy Music and the rest of your musical reads.

Summer doesn’t officially start for a while yet — but your seasonal reading list is already starting to take shape. Especially if you’re a fan of Bob Dylan, The Who, Duran Duran, Roxy Music, Donna Summer, Blue Note Records or the rest of today’s musical topics. Read all about ’em:


A Band with Built-In Hate: The Who from Pop Art to Punk
By Peter Stanfield

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “This book is a biography of The Who unlike any other. From their inception as The Detours in the mid-’60s, to the late ’70s, post-Quadrophenia, The Who are pictured through the prism of pop art and the radical leveling of high and low culture that it brought about — a drama that was consciously and aggressively performed by the band. Peter Stanfield lays down a path through the British pop revolution, its attitude and style, as it was uniquely embodied by the band: first, under the mentorship of arch-mod Peter Meaden, as they learned their trade in the pubs and halls of suburban London; and then with Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp, two aspiring filmmakers, at the very center of things in Soho. Guided by the concerns of contemporary commentators — among them George Melly, Lawrence Alloway, and, most conspicuously, Nik Cohn — Stanfield tells the story of a band driven by fury, and of what happened when Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey, Keith Moon and John Entwistle moved from backroom stages to international arenas, from explosive 45s to expansive concept albums. Above all, he tells of how the Who confronted their lost youth as it was echoed in punk.”

Seeing Sideways: A Memoir of Music and Motherhood
By Kristin Hersh

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Doony, Ryder, Wyatt, Bodhi. The names of Kristin Hersh’s sons are the only ones included in her new memoir, Seeing Sideways. As the book unfolds and her sons’ voices rise from its pages, it becomes clear why: These names tell the story of her life. This story begins in 1990, when Hersh is the leader of the indie rock group Throwing Muses, touring steadily, and the mother of a young son, Doony. The chapters that follow reveal a woman and mother whose life and career grow and change with each of her sons: the story of a custody battle for Doony is told alongside that of Hersh’s struggles with her record company and the resulting PTSD; the tale of breaking free from her record label stands in counterpoint to her recounting of her pregnancy with Ryder; a period of writer’s block coincides with the development of Wyatt as an artist and the family’s loss of their home; and finally, soon after Bodhi’s arrival, Hersh and her boys face crises from which only strange angels can save them. Punctuated with her own song lyrics, Seeing Sideways is a memoir about a life strange enough to be fiction, but so raw and moving that it can only be real.”

The World of Bob Dylan
By Sean Latham

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Bob Dylan has helped transform music, literature, pop culture, and even politics. The World of Bob Dylan chronicles a lifetime of creative invention that has made a global impact. Leading rock and pop critics and music scholars address themes and topics central to Dylan’s life and work: the blues, his religious faith, civil rights, gender, race, and American and world literature. Incorporating a rich array of new archival material from never before accessed archives, The World of Bob Dylan offers a comprehensive, uniquely informed and wholly fresh account of the songwriter, artist, filmmaker, and Nobel Laureate whose unique voice has permanently reshaped our cultural landscape.”

Bob Dylan: The Stories Behind the Songs 1962-68
By Andy Gill

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In this book, Andy Gill assess the circumstances behind Bob Dylan’s most famous songs, tracing the artist’s progress from young tyro folkie to acclaimed protest singer, and through the subsequent changes which saw him invent folk-rock and transform rock ‘n’ roll with symbolist poetry, before retreating into country-tinged conservatism just as his followers were engaged in the great psychedelic freak show of the late 1960s.”

The Cover Art of Blue Note Records: The Collection
By Graham Marsh, Glyn Callingham

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:The Cover Art of Blue Note Records is Graham Marsh and Glyn Callingham’s classic collection of the finest record sleeves produced by the celebrated Blue Note record label. This new edition is the complete compilation of the original volumes published nearly two decades ago. Including every cover, essay, and photo that appeared in the original volumes, this collection is bound to appeal. Iconic covers of artists such as Herbie Hancock, Thelonious Monk, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Sonny Rollins and Art Blakey make this anthology an evocative piece of jazz history. With over 400 of the best covers in the record label’s history and a selection of short essays, this is a comprehensive guide for all jazz fans and anyone interested in classic design.”

33 1/3 | Duran Duran’s Rio
By Annie Zaleski

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In the ’80s, the Birmingham, England band Duran Duran became closely associated with new wave, an idiosyncratic genre that dominated the decade’s music and culture. No album represented this rip-it-up-and-start-again movement better than the act’s breakthrough 1982 LP Rio. A cohesive album with a retro-futuristic sound — and influences including danceable disco, tangy funk, swaggering glam, and Roxy Music’s art-rock — the full-length sold millions and spawned smashes such as Hungry Like the Wolf and the title track. However, Rio wasn’t a success everywhere at first; in fact, the LP had to be buffed-up with remixes and reissued before it found an audience in America. The album was further buoyed by colorful music videos, which established Duran Duran as leaders of an MTV-driven second British Invasion, and the group’s cutting-edge visual aesthetic. Via extensive new interviews with band members and other figures who helped Rio succeed, this book explores how and why Rio became a landmark pop-rock album, and examines how the LP was both a musical inspiration-and a reflection of a musical, cultural, and technology zeitgeist.”

33 1/3 | Roxy Music’s Avalon
By Simon A. Morrison

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Having designed Roxy Music as an haute couture suit hand-stitched of punk and progressive music, Bryan Ferry redesigned it. He made Roxy Music ever dreamier and mellower-reaching back to sadly beautiful chivalric romances. Dadaist (punk) noise exited; a kind of ambient soft soul entered. Ferry parted ways with Brian Eno, electric violinist Eddie Jobson, and drummer Paul Thompson, foreswearing the broken-sounding synthesizers played by kitchen utensils, the chance-based elements, and the maquillage of previous albums. The production and engineering imposed on Avalon confiscates emotion and replaces it with an acoustic simulacrum of courtliness, polished manners, and codes of etiquette. The seducer sings seductive music about seduction, but decorum is retained, as amour courtois insists. The backbeat cannot beat back nostalgia; it remains part of the architecture of Avalon, an album that creates an allusive sheen. Be nostalgic, by all means, but embrace that feeling’s falseness, because nostalgia-whether inspired by medieval Arthuriana or 1940s film noir repartee or a 1980s drug-induced high-deceives. Nostalgia defines our fantasies and our (not Ferry’s) essential artifice.”

33 1/3 | Donna Summer’s Once Upon a Time
By Alex Jeffery

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Contradicting assumptions that disco albums are shallow and packed with filler, Donna Summer’s double album Once Upon A Time stands out as a piece that delivers on its promise of an immaculately crafted journey from start to finish. A new interpretation of the Cinderella story, it is set in the then contemporary world of New York disco and takes the listener on a journey from urban isolation and deep despair to joy and vindication, all filtered through the mind of its naïve and fantasy-prone protagonist. As well as charting the production of the album within the legendary Munich Machine in Germany, this book digs deep into the album’s rich themes and subtexts. Approaching the book from inventive angles, the four essays within the book act as a prism connecting the reader to the classical aspirations of Eurodisco, the history of the black fairy tale and a queer knowledge that reads Summer’s Cinderella tale in some surprising ways.”

The Magic Years: Scenes from a Rock-and-Roll Life
By Jonathan Taplin

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Jonathan Taplin’s extraordinary journey has put him at the crest of every major cultural wave in the past half century: he was tour manager for Bob Dylan and The Band in the ’60s, producer of major films in the ’70s, an executive at Merrill Lynch in the ’80s, creator of the Internet’s first video-on-demand service in the ’90s, and a cultural critic and author writing about technology in the new millennium. His is a lifetime marked not only by good timing but by impeccable instincts ― from the folk scene to Woodstock, Hollywood’s rebellious film movement, and beyond. Taplin is not just a witness but a lifelong producer, the right-hand man to some of the greatest talents of both pop culture and the underground. With cameos by Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Martin Scorsese and countless other icons, The Magic Years is both a rock memoir and a work of cultural criticism from a key player who watched a nation turn from idealism to nihilism. Taplin offers a clear-eyed roadmap of how we got here and makes a convincing case for art’s power to deliver us from “passionless detachment” and rekindle our humanism.”

How To Be A Rock Star
By David Ambrose

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:How To Be A Rock Star is the memoir by former EMI head of A&R David Ambrose. Co-authored by acclaimed music writer Lesley-Ann Jones, the book is a riveting rewind through Ambrose’s years as a rock musician, performing and recording with Rod Stewart, Ray Davies, Julie Driscoll, Peter Green, Mick Fleetwood and many more. The original bass player with Fleetwood Mac, David turned his back on stardom at the height of his playing potential to become a record company executive at EMI. He found and signed some of the most successful acts of the era: The Sex Pistols, Duran Duran and The Pet Shop Boys. Foreword by Mick Fleetwood, founder and drummer of Fleetwood Mac.”

In Defense of Ska
By Aaron Carnes

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Why doesn’t ska get its due as a rich, diverse genre the way punk, metal, hip-hop and electronic music does? Or more to the point, why are ska fans so embarrassed of this music they love? The era of ska shame is officially over. In Defense of Ska is the much-needed response to years of ska-mockery. No longer do ska fans need to hide in the basement, skanking alone in their sharp suits, slim ties and porkpie hats. Now the time to take to the streets and fight music snobbery, or at least crank up the ska without being teased ruthlessly. In a mix of interviews, essays, personal stories, historical snapshots, obscure anecdotes, and think pieces, In Defense of Ska dissects, analyzes and celebrates ska in exactly the way fans have been craving for decades. This book will enlist ska lovers as soldiers in the ska army, and challenge ska-haters’ prejudices to the core.”

Trans-Global Punk Scenes: The Punk Reader Volume 2
By Russ Bestley & Mike Dines

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “While the punk scenes and subcultures of the late 1970s and early 1980s are well known and well documented, the proliferation of punk after the year 2000 has been far less studied. Picking up where The Punk Reader left off, Trans-Global Punk Scenes examines the global influence of punk in the new millennium, with a focus on punk demographics, the evolution of subcultural punk styles, and the notion of punk identity across cultural and geographic boundaries.”