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Next Week in Music | Oct. 3-9 • New Books

Another week, another dozen-plus new music books to add to the burgeoning pile.

Margo and Melissa. Gary and Galaxie 500. ELP and Eilish. Banjos and black country. Stevie and shootings. Faith and The Fall. Loretta and Leeds. You can read about them all — and plenty more besides — next week. And right now, for that matter. Let’s get started:


Maybe We’ll Make It: A Memoir
By Margo Price

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “When Margo Price was 19 years old, she dropped out of college and moved to Nashville to become a musician. She busked on the street, played open mics, and even threw out her TV so that she would do nothing but write songs. She met Jeremy Ivey, a fellow musician who would become her closest collaborator and her husband. But after working on their craft for more than a decade, Price and Ivey had no label, no band, and plenty of heartache. Maybe We’ll Make It is a memoir of loss, motherhood, and the search for artistic freedom in the midst of the agony experienced by so many aspiring musicians: bad gigs and long tours, rejection and sexual harassment, too much drinking and barely enough money to live on. Price, though, refused to break, and turned her lowest moments into the classic country songs that eventually comprised the debut album that launched her career. In the authentic voice hailed for tackling “Steinbeck-sized issues with no-bullshit humility,” Price shares the stories that became songs, and the small acts of love and camaraderie it takes to survive in a music industry that is often unkind to women. Now a Grammy-nominated Best New Artist, Price tells a love story of music, collaboration, and the struggle to build a career while trying to maintain her singular voice and style.”

Mirror in the Sky: The Life and Music of Stevie Nicks
By Simon Morrison

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “A stunning musical biography of Stevie Nicks that paints a portrait of an artist, not a caricature of a superstar. Reflective and expansive, Mirror in the Sky situates Nicks as one of the finest songwriters of the 20th century. This biography from distinguished music historian Simon Morrison examines Nicks as a singer and songwriter before and beyond her career with Fleetwood Mac, from the Arizona landscape of her childhood to the strobe-lit Night of 1000 Stevies celebrations. The book uniquely analyzes Nicks’s craft — the grain of her voice, the poetry of her lyrics, the melodic and harmonic syntax of her songs. It identifies the American folk and country influences on her musical imagination that place her within a distinctly American tradition of women songwriters. And it draws from oral histories and surprising archival discoveries to connect Nicks’s story to those of California’s above — and underground music industries, innovations in recording technology, and gendered restrictions.”

Gary Moore: The Official Biography
by Harry Shapiro

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Gary Moore delighted entire generations with his passionate guitar playing, from the driving rock of Thin Lizzy in the 1970s to his explorations in subsequent decades of jazz fusion, heavy metal, hard rock, blues rock, and more. Throughout that time, he could be seen on the world’s biggest stages, yet the real Gary Moore was always hidden in plain sight, giving little away. Now, however, through extensive and revealing interviews with family members, friends, and fellow musicians, acclaimed rock biographer Harry Shapiro is able to take readers right to the heart of Gary’s life and career. Despite his early death in 2011, Moore still has legions of devoted fans across the world who will be enthralled by this unique insight into the life of a guitar genius who did it his way and whose music lives on. Beginning with Gary as a teenage guitar prodigy in war-torn Ireland and continuing through the many highs and lows of more than 40 years in rock, Shapiro paints an intimate portrait of a musician widely hailed as one of the greatest Irish bluesmen of all time.”

Galaxie 500: Temperature’s Rising: An Oral and Visual History
By Mike McGonigal

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Slow, deliberate and deceptively simple, the music of Boston-based band Galaxie 500 was wonderfully at odds with the prevailing underground sounds of the late 1980s and early 1990s. Formed in 1987, the band split up in 1991 after releasing three acclaimed albums — Today, On Fire and This Is Our Music — as well as a Peel Sessions recording. The primary contributors to this long-unavailable history of the band are the three band members — bassist/vocalist Naomi Yang, drummer Damon Krukowski and guitarist/vocalist Dean Wareham — but dozens of people were interviewed in all, including fellow musicians, record business folks, music critics and scenesters. Galaxie 500: Temperature’s Rising provides a complex, sometimes contentious account of the band’s rise to indie stardom and their acrimonious breakup. It also includes dozens of rare and never-before-seen photographs, as well as posters and other ephemera from the personal collection of Yang, who provides a running commentary to the images. This is the definitive book about Galaxie 500 and a crucial chapter in the story of indie rock.”

Heartstrings: Melissa Etheridge & Her Guitars
By Melissa Etheridge & Frank Marraffino

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Melissa Etheridge’s Heartstrings takes you on a journey through her growth and life as a musician, as it reveals the untold stories behind some of her favorite guitars — each one of them exciting, significant, and dear to her heart and music.”


A Time And A Place: The ELP Story
By Laura Shenton

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Throughout the 1970s, Emerson Lake & Palmer were phenomenally prolific. Not only that, but each of their albums brought something new and innovative to the minds of their many fans. From the early days of the band and their iconic performance at the Isle of Wight Festival in August 1970, to Love Beach and beyond, this book documents the amazing journey of a band whose legacy not only continues to attract a loyal following, but who are still held in high regard by their peers. Historic documentation of some of the band’s under-reported gigs, and context surrounding each of their albums throughout the ’70s — it’s all in here as Laura Shenton offers a detailed and comprehensive exploration.”

Billie Eilish: Your Power
By Carolyn McHugh

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Billie Eilish Pirate Baird O’Connell had her first hit in 2015 with the single Ocean Eyes and since then has gone on to become a word-wide pop phenomenon. With two massive hit albums to her name, she has gone on to win seven Grammy Awards, two American Music Awards, one Guinness World Record, three MTV Video Music Awards and two Brit Awards. This biography takes you on this remarkable journey an uplifting story of a great modern artist illustrated with high-quality photographs.”

A Hit With A Bullet: A True Story of Corruption, Greed & The Real Murder On Music Row
By Sammy Sadler

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In 1989, country newcomer Sammy Sadler had already charted several critically acclaimed singles and was ready to release his first album when he was shot during the assassination of then-Cash Box chart-manager Kevin Hughes, an incident known around the world as the Murder on Music Row. The police had no suspects, and even though Sammy suffered a nearly fatal bullet wound, the officers kept him under suspicion during the 13-year investigation. Eventually, the investigation would reveal an elaborate web of corruption, chart-rigging and payola, a clear motive and suspect for the murder. An ending that rocked the music industry for many years to come. In this first-hand account, Sadler recounts his personal and sensational journey from wide-eyed, promising, Top-40 newcomer to “person of interest” and survivor of one of the most infamous killings in the music business. From his struggle to recover from his nearly-fatal injuries to the turmoil endured during the 13-year career-throttling investigation, this autobiographical account is a demonstration of his faith and his resilient passion for music that would allow him to move forward and continue to pursue his dreams.”

This Bell Still Rings: My Life of Defiance and Song
By Barbara Dane

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “A renowned folk, blues, and jazz singer who performed with some of the 20th century’s most celebrated musicians, from Louis Armstrong to Bob Dylan. A proud progressive who has tirelessly championed racial equality and economic justice in America, and who has traveled the world to sing out against war and tyranny. An organizer, a venue owner, a record label founder, and a woman who has charted her own creative and political path for more than ninety years. Barbara Dane has led an epic, trailblazing life in music and activism, and This Bell Still Rings tells her story in her own adventurous voice. Dane’s memoir charts her trajectory from singing in union halls and at factory gates in Second World War–era Detroit, to her ascendancy as a central figure in the Bay Area’s blues and jazz scenes, to her prominence as a folk musician frequently decorating the bills of civil rights and peace demonstrations across America and in countries from Cuba to Vietnam. This Bell Still Rings illuminates one of the true unsung heroes of American music, and it offers a wealth of inspiration for artists, activists, and anyone seeking a life defined by courage and integrity.”

The Faith of Elvis
By Billy Stanley & Kent Sanders

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Behind the glamour and the crowds. Beyond the movies and the records. Apart from all who knew him, wanted to know him, or just wanted to be near him. Billy Stanley knew Elvis Presley as a brother — and as a man of deep faith. From the day Stanley arrived at Graceland and received a bear hug from the King of Rock and Roll to the last conversation they ever had, one thing stayed the same: Elvis’s passion for sharing God’s love with as many people he could. In The Faith of Elvis, Stanley illuminates Elvis’s Christian journey — from the notes Elvis made in his beloved Bible to his struggles with sin as his fame increased to his remarkable generosity toward fans and movie stars alike. Here you will find your own faith strengthened and your heart turned more toward heaven — or as Elvis would say, toward the only true King.”

The Beatles: Rubber Soul to Revolver
By Bruce Spizer

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:The Beatles: Rubber Soul to Revolver is the latest installment in Bruce Spizer’s Beatles Album Series, covering two of The Beatles most important albums, Rubber Soul and Revolver, as well as Capitol’s Yesterday And Today LP and the singles associated with these albums. Rubber Soul and Revolver set new standards for pop and rock records, and presented a maturing and evolving Beatles to the world. The 16 tracks recorded during the Rubber Soul sessions are among the group’s finest. With Revolver, The Beatles were looking for more color in their recordings, trying new instruments and techniques. But they were not using studio wizardry to cover weaknesses; they were looking for new sounds to enhance their already brilliant songs. The book contains chapters on the British, American, and Canadian perspectives, an extensive treatment on the infamous Butcher Cover (featuring all of the significant images from the photo sessions and the true story behind the controversial cover). There are also chapters on the recording sessions and album covers, as well as on the news, music, and films of the era to place these albums in their proper context. And, of course, dozens of fan recollections.”

You Must Get Them All: The Fall On Record
By Steve Pringle

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:You Must Get Them All is the first book to capture the full, incredible story of The Fall, from Live At The Electric Circus to New Facts Emerge. It covers every single release — album, EP, single, compilation, live album — every lineup change, every setback and every triumph. It is a comprehensive chronology of the life and times of Britain’s most remarkable group, based on contemporary accounts, the recollections of Fall members and the experiences of the Fall community — the gig-goers, the record-buyers, the lyrical analysts and the factual obsessives. It’s a book that challenges the clichés, lazy assumptions and common misconceptions about The Fall. But above all else, it celebrates the astonishing and significant body of work that the group created over their 40 odd years of existence.”

33 1/3 | Bea Palya’s I’ll Be Your Plaything
by András Rónai & Anna Szemere

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “For decades, the state-run music industry in Hungary has artificially isolated musical worlds. The 2010 album I’ll Be Your Plaything is a concept album comprising at times drastically re-imagined cover versions of Hungary’s most popular hits from the socialist era. As such it is a testament to music as a medium’s aptness to reflect on public and personal pasts. The album moreover exemplifies how rich and appealing synthesis of sounds and traditions can be concocted when folk, classically trained, rock, and jazz musical artists collaborate. Along with this freedom to blend and synthesize, the album opens up some long overdue space for women; playing with personas, voices, and singing styles, Bea Palya reflects on issues of femininity, maternity, sexuality, and coupledom across generations.”

Abbey Road: The Inside Story of the World’s Most Famous Recording Studio
By David Hepworth

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Many people will recognise the famous zebra crossing. Some visitors may have graffitied their name on its hallowed outer walls. Others might even have managed to penetrate the iron gates. But what draws in these thousands of fans here, year after year? What is it that really happens behind the doors of the most celebrated recording studio in the world? It may have begun life as an affluent suburban house, but it soon became a creative hub renowned around the world as a place where great music, ground-breaking sounds and unforgettable tunes were forged — nothing less than a witness to, and a key participant in, the history of popular music itself. What has been going on there for over ninety years has called for skills that are musical, creative, technical, mechanical, interpersonal, logistical, managerial, chemical and, romantics might be tempted add, close to magic.”

No Machos or Pop Stars: When the Leeds Art Experiment Went Punk
By Gavin Butt

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After punk’s arrival in 1976, many art students in the northern English city of Leeds traded their paint brushes for guitars and synthesizers. In bands ranging from Gang Of Four, Soft Cell and Delta 5 to Mekons, Scritti Politti and Fad Gadget, these artists-turned-musicians challenged the limits of what was deemed possible in rock and pop music. Taking avant-garde ideas to the record buying public, they created situationist anti-rock and art-punk, penned deconstructed pop ditties about Jacques Derrida, and took the aesthetics of collage and shock to dark, brooding electro-dance music. In No Machos or Pop Stars, Gavin Butt tells the fascinating story of the post-punk scene in Leeds, showing how England’s state-funded education policy brought together art students from different social classes to create a fertile ground for musical experimentation. Drawing on extensive interviews with band members, their associates, and teachers, Butt details the groups who wanted to dismantle art world and music industry hierarchies by making it possible to dance to their art. Their stories reveal the subversive influence of art school in a regional music scene of lasting international significance.”

Well of Souls: Uncovering the Banjo’s Hidden History
By Kristina R Gaddy

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In an extraordinary story unfolding across two hundred years, Kristina Gaddy uncovers the banjo’s key role in Black spirituality, ritual, and rebellion. Through meticulous research in diaries, letters, archives, and art, she traces the banjo’s beginnings from the 17th century, when enslaved people of African descent created it from gourds or calabashes and wood. Gaddy shows how the enslaved carried this unique instrument as they were transported and sold by slaveowners throughout the Americas, to Suriname, the Caribbean, and the colonies that became U.S. states, including Louisiana, South Carolina, Maryland, and New York. African Americans came together at rituals where the banjo played an essential part. White governments, rightfully afraid that the gatherings could instigate revolt, outlawed them without success. In the mid-nineteenth century, Blackface minstrels appropriated the instrument for their bands, spawning a craze. Eventually the banjo became part of jazz, bluegrass, and country, its deepest history forgotten.”

Black Country Music: Listening for Revolutions
By Francesca T. Royster

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After a century of racist whitewashing, country music is finally reckoning with its relationship to Black people. In this timely work — the first book on Black country music by a Black writer — Francesca Royster uncovers the Black performers and fans, including herself, who are exploring the pleasures and possibilities of the genre. Informed by queer theory and Black feminist scholarship, Francesca T. Royster‘s book elucidates the roots of the current moment found in records like Tina Turner’s first solo album, Tina Turns the Country On! She reckons with Black “bros” Charley Pride and Darius Rucker, then chases ghosts into the future with Valerie June. Indeed, it is the imagination of Royster and her artists that make this music so exciting for a genre that has long been obsessed with the past. The futures conjured by June and others can be melancholy, and are not free of racism, but by centering Black folk, Royster begins to understand what her daughter hears in the banjo music of Our Native Daughters and the trap beat of Lil Nas X‘s Old Town Road. A Black person claiming country music may still feel a bit like a queer person coming out, but, collectively, Black artists and fans are changing what country music looks and sounds like-and who gets to love it.”

Female Force: Loretta Lynn
By Ryan McCall

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “From the coal mines of Kentucky to the biggest stages around the world, Female Force: Loretta Lynn looks at the life and career of the iconic Loretta Lynn. The triumphs and tragedies that made this living legend America’s Sweetheart are detailed in her first ever comic book from Tidalwave Productions.”



Bobby Digital and the Pit of Snakes: Pit of Snakes
By Ryan O’Sullivan & Rza

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Who are you, what is real? This is the question Bobby Digital is seeking to answer. Embracing his id, ego and superego he embarks on a quest to figure out the nature of his reality and himself. He will be ambushed by enemies unknown, he will be tried in ways most men can’t endure. Will he be victorious? Most of all will he survive the Pit of Snakes?! From the mind of the legendary RZA, Bobby Digital and The Pit of Snakes will coincide with the relaunch of the iconic character and be synced to music that will melt your mind.”

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