Home Read News Next Week in Music | April 1-7 • 19 New Books

Next Week in Music | April 1-7 • 19 New Books

Welcome to an April shower of musical books — including tomes on The Beach Boys, Skip Spence, The Everly Brothers, David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust days, Jelly Roll Morton, Pulp, Tina Turner and plenty more. Read all about ’em:


The Beach Boys
By The Beach Boys

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Here, for the first time in print, is the history of The Beach Boys, by The Beach Boys. Their only official book, The Beach Boys is the ultimate chronicle of one of the world’s greatest bands. Through their unique sound, complex harmonies, sensational live shows and use of innovative recording techniques, The Beach Boys became woven into the cultural fabric of America and influenced generations of musicians globally. This book documents how it happened. Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine and Bruce Johnston together provide a combined career narrative especially for this book, and through meticulous compilation from sources worldwide, Carl Wilson and Dennis Wilson’s words are equally represented. Documenting how they went from a Hawthorne garage band to a global phenomenon, they tell the astounding story of their ascent: Perfecting their harmonies, initial fame as a surf group, and then their ultimate progression as pioneering recording artists to become one of the most musically complex ensembles in history. Their text is accompanied by iconic images, never-before-seen negatives and rare ephemera. Expanding the narrative are a host of contributors, including Peter Blake, Lindsey Buckingham, Eric Clapton, Elvis Costello, Ray Davies, Bob Dylan, Def Leppard, Flaming Lips, Bobby Gillespie, David Lee Roth, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Jim Kerr, Roger McGuinn, Graham Nash, Jimmy Page, Carly Simon, Pete Townshend, Rufus Wainwright, Thom Yorke and many more. A group collaboration, The Beach Boys is, in effect, The Beach Boys’ autobiography.”

Weighted Down: The Complicated Life Of Skip Spence
By Cam Cobb

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Weighted Down is the first biography of the legendary ’60s cult musician Skip Spence. As a member of era-defining bands Moby Grape, Quicksilver Messenger Service and Jefferson Airplane, Spence played a large part in setting the agenda and aesthetic for many other groups of the era. His only solo album, the hugely psychedelic and occasionally challenging Oar, cemented his reputation, and he has since gone on to be celebrated by the likes of Tom Waits, Beck and Robert Plant. However, the musician’s life was aggrieved by substance abuse, erratic behavior, and poor mental health. Cobb regards Spence’s life as a whole, warts and all, from his visionary recordings, to his idiosyncratic personality and untimely death at the age of 52. Skip Spence was a soldier, a rock star, an innovator, an addict, a cult phenomenon, and a ward of the state. The characters in his story include Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Santana, B.B. King, Neil Young and many more. Spence’s story is the story of the ’60s, and one that has never been told in full. It’s the story of San Francisco, the biggest bands in America, Columbia Records, The Hells Angels and rock ‘n’ roll mayhem.”

Crying In The Rain: The Perfect Harmony And Imperfect Lives Of the Everly Brothers
By Mark Ribowsky

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:The Everly Brothers — aka Don and Phil to fans with an intimate appreciation for them — seemed to exist almost as an apparition. Emerging within the formative era for young Baby Boomers during the bland, regimented ’50s, they were a ubiquitous presence, clad in snug suits and skinny ties, hair neatly Brylcreemed, never raising their voices when they sang. The two prim-looking country boys with dark, curiously penetrating eyes and perfectly merged, honey-dipped harmonies, were oddly but comfortably settled as sentimental, soothing, sometimes lovelorn voices of a still-uncharted cultural turf. Magnificent as the duo was, they have until now never received a definitive biography. In Crying In The Rain: The Perfect Harmony and Imperfect Lives Of the Everly Brothers, the details, small and great, roll along in near novel-like fashion, revealing facts drawn from exhaustive research and first-hand interviews that trace the character and influences of these hardy but flawed men who grew from teenagers to old men before our eyes. Mark Ribowsky’s authoritative book serves as a fitting companion to an unforgettable collection of songs — heard on countless albums, and covered literally thousands of times — whose recording was a long time gone but that will never be forgotten.”

Me And Mr Jones: My Life With David Bowie And The Spiders From Mars
By Suzi Ronson

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Suzi Ronson was working in a Beckenham hair salon in the early ’70s when Mrs. Jones came in for her weekly shampoo and set. After being introduced to her son David Bowie and his wife Angie, Suzi finds herself at the Bowies’ bohemian apartment and is soon embroiled in their raucous world. Having crafted his iconic Ziggy Stardust hairstyle, Suzi becomes the only working woman in David’s touring party and joins the Spiders From Mars as they perform around the globe. Amid the costume blunders, parties and groupies she meets her husband-to-be, Mick Ronson, and together they traverse the absurdities of life in show business, falling in with the likes of Iggy Pop, Bob Dylan and Lou Reed along the way. Dazzling and intimate, Me and Mr Jones provides not only a unique perspective on one of the most beguiling stars of our time but also a world on the cusp of cultural transformation, charting the highs and lows of life as one of the only women in the room as it happened.”

Jelly Roll Blues: Censored Songs And Hidden Histories
By Elijah Wald

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In Jelly Roll Blues: Censored Songs and Hidden Histories, Elijah Wald takes readers on a journey into the hidden and censored world of early blues and jazz, guided by the legendary New Orleans pianist Jelly Roll Morton. Morton became nationally famous as a composer and bandleader in the 1920s, but got his start 20 years earlier, entertaining customers in the city’s famous bordellos and singing rough blues in Gulf Coast honky-tonks. He recorded an oral history of that time in 1938, but the most distinctive songs were hidden away for over 50 years, because the language and themes were as wild and raunchy as anything in gangsta rap. Those songs inspired Wald to explore how much other history had been locked away and censored, and this book is the result of that quest. Full of previously unpublished lyrics and stories, it paints a new and surprising picture of the dawn of American popular music, when jazz and blues were still the private, after-hours music of the Black “sporting world.” It gives new insight into familiar figures like Buddy Bolden and Louis Armstrong, and introduces forgotten characters like Ready Money, the New Orleans sex worker and pickpocket who ended up owning one of the largest Black hotels on the West Coast. Revelatory and fascinating, these songs and stories provide an alternate view of Black culture at the turn of the 20th century.”

So It Started There: From Punk To Pulp
By Nick Banks

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:So It Started There chronicles the life and career of drummer Nick Banks, including how he came to be in the iconic and beloved band Pulp. Beginning with his childhood in Rotherham, England, Nick recounts his personal and musical journey through the genres, first as a punk, then as a goth; how it all started when he was first inspired to pick up the sticks by Sex Pistols drummer Paul Cook. Flash forward to the ’80s. Nick spies an ad from his favorite band, Pulp, in a local club. He pays Jarvis Cocker and the gang a visit and the rest is history. From there, Nick describes his growth as a professional drummer and musician, the trials and tribulations of chasing success in the music industry, touring triumphs and horrors, the band’s journey from relative obscurity to becoming a global sensation, and the process of writing and recording their most famous albums. Written with warmth, humor, and charm, Nick tells all. And with it, tells the story of a band that defined a generation.”

U2: Past Present Future
By Ernesto Assante

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:U2 remain deeply rooted in tradition while still looking toward the future and pushing boundaries. This book relates their story through spectacular photographs and a precise description of the events and major stages of their tours and recordings, as well as through quotes taken from interviews with Bono and The Edge. This edition has been updated to include the band’s latest albums, concerts, and achievements.”

Tuned In: Memoirs Of A Piano Man
By Jim Wilson

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The unique confluence of Jim Wilson’s two careers — piano technician to the stars and a globally successful recording artist — has led to extraordinary experiences with some of the world’s most exalted music legends: Singing Beatles songs with Paul McCartney, limo rides with Elton John, road trips with Carole King, horseback riding with Dan Fogelberg. But beyond this everyman’s unique telling of intimate celebrity tales, Tuned In is an inspiring story of one man’s relentless pursuit of a dream, and a revealing testimony to the power of music in all our lives. Emerging from a troubled childhood in a broken West Texas home, a young man moves to L.A. to pursue fame and fortune as a singer-songwriter. He soon strays from his mission when his piano tuning sideline blossoms into a career as piano technician to music’s biggest names. His front row seat provides him with a rare and fascinating view into their creative processes. But when his world is shattered by a friend’s sudden and untimely death, he is forced to question the meaning of success. He returns to his heart’s purpose, takes a leap into the unknown, and sets out on a solo career. Tuned In is an inspiring story of one man’s relentless pursuit of a dream, and a revealing testimony to the power of music in all our lives.”

American Hair Metal: Can’t Get Enough!
By Steven Blush

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “There was a time — not so long ago — when pomp and spandex dominated MTV and pop radio playlists. Nearly 20 years after the first edition, people still can’t get enough hair metal. The new expanded edition of American Hair Metal visually celebrates this orgy of flamboyance, androgyny, and animal magnetism, of big-haired alpha males and the beautiful women who surrounded them. Interest in hair metal is currently exploding — witness arena-level revival tours, reissue compilations, and documentaries and docudramas that revisit the excesses of the ’80s and ’90s. Hundreds of striking photographs are complimented by hedonistic ephemera from bands like Poison, Cinderella, Mötley Crüe, Skid Row and Stryper. Wild quotes from major players such as David Lee Roth, Jon Bon Jovi, Sebastian Bach, Tommy Lee, Nikki Sixx, Bret Michaels, Don Dokken and many unsung heroes. The expanded edition includes more photos, more quotes, a new introduction by Chip Z’Nuff (Enuff Z’Nuff) and an interview with Rik Fox (WASP, Steeler).”

Cold War Country: How Nashville’s Music Row & The Pentagon Created The Sound Of American Patriotism
By Joseph M. Thompson

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Country music maintains a special, decades-long relationship to American military life, but these ties didn’t just happen. This readable history reveals how country music’s Nashville  business leaders on Music Row created partnerships with the Pentagon to sell their audiences on military service while selling the music to servicemembers. Beginning in the 1950s, the military flooded armed forces airwaves with the music, hosted tour dates at bases around the world, and drew on artists from Johnny Cash to Lee Greenwood to support recruitment programs. Over the last half of the 20th century, the close connections between the Defense Department and Music Row gave an economic boost to the white-dominated sounds of country while marginalizing Black artists and fueling divisions over the meaning of patriotism. This story is filled with familiar stars like Roy Acuff, Elvis Presley and George Strait, as well as lesser-known figures: Industry executives who worked the halls of Congress, country artists who dissented from the stereotypically patriotic trappings of the genre, and more.”

A Chance To Harmonize
By Sheryl Kaskowitz

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In 1934, the Great Depression had destroyed the U.S. economy, leaving residents poverty-stricken. First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt urged President Franklin Roosevelt to take radical action to help those hit hardest — Appalachian miners and mill workers stranded after factories closed, city dwellers with no hope of getting work, farmers whose land had failed. They set up government homesteads in rural areas, an experiment in cooperative living where people could start over. To boost morale and encourage the homesteaders to find community in their own traditions, the administration brought in artists to lead group activities — including folk music. As part of a music unit led by Charles Seeger (father of Pete), staffer Sidney Robertson traveled the country to record hundreds of folk songs. Working almost entirely (and purposely) under the radar, the music unit would collect more than 800 songs and operate for nearly two years, until they were shut down under fire from a conservative coalition in Congress that deemed the enterprise dangerously “socialistic.” Despite its demise, the music unit proved that music can provide hope and a sense of belonging even in the darkest times. It also laid the groundwork for the folk revival that followed, seeing the rise of artists like Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, Odetta and Bob Dylan. Award-winning author and Harvard-trained American music scholar Sheryl Kaskowitz has had the unique opportunity to listen to the music unit’s entire collection of recordings and examine a trove of archival materials, some of which have never been made available to the public. A Chance To Harmonize reveals this untold, undiscovered chapter in American cultural history.”

California Gold: Sidney Robertson And The WPA California Folk Music Project
By Catherine Hiebert Kerst

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:California Gold offers a compelling cultural snapshot of a diverse California during the 1930s at the height of the New Deal, drawing on the career of folk music collector Sidney Robertson and the musical culture of often-unheard voices. Robertson — an intrepid young woman armed only with a map, her notebooks, and the recording equipment of the time — proposed and directed a New Deal initiative, the WPA California Folk Music Project, designed to survey musical traditions from a wide range of English-speaking and immigrant communities in Northern California. In California Gold, Catherine Hiebert Kerst explores Robertson’s distinctive and modern approach to fieldwork and examines the numerous ethnographic materials she generated with WPA project staff to capture a cross-section of the music that people were actively performing in their communities. Kerst highlights some of the most notable songs, images, and ephemera of the collection, capturing and contextualizing the diverse musical traditions that California immigrant communities performed during the era.”

Zerox Machine: Punk, Post-Punk & Fanzines In Britain, 1976-88
By Matthew Worley

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Zerox Machine is an immersive journey through the vibrant history of British punk and its associated fanzines from 1976 to 1988. Drawing on an extensive range of previously unpublished materials sourced from private collections across the U.K., Matthew Worley describes and analyses this transformative era, providing an intimate glimpse into the hopes and anxieties that shaped a generation. Far more than a showcase of covers, this book examines the fanzines themselves, offering a rich tapestry of first-hand accounts, personal stories and subcultural reflections. Through meticulous research and insightful analysis, Worley captures the spirit and essence of British youth culture, not only shedding new light on a pivotal movement in music history but crafting a unique alternative history of Britain in the 1970s and ’80s.”

Hurricanes Of Color: Iconic Rock Photography From The Beatles To Woodstock And Beyond
By Mike Frankel

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In 1964, 15-year-old Mike Frankel found himself among professional photojournalists covering a Beatles concert during the band’s first tour in the U.S. A few years later, he was a regular photographer at the Fillmore East, a storied venue in classic rock. And in 1969, he was onstage at Woodstock, documenting one of the most important events in American music history. Featuring Frankel’s stunning photographs of nearly every major rock figure from the 1960s and ’70s — including Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, The Rolling Stones, Janis Joplin and The Grateful Dead — as well as many unpublished images of The Beatles, Hurricanes of Color chronicles an extraordinary moment. Frankel, who was for a time a personal photographer for Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna, developed an innovative style — one that layered images with multiple exposures to capture the spirit of the music of the era and the experience of listening to the bands live. A must-have for fans of classic rock, this is a spectacular and profound collection of photography that complements the music of the world’s biggest performers.”

Simply Tina: Tina Turner Photographs
By Paul Cox

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Tina Turner: Singer, trailblazer, icon. One of the best-known and most-beloved performers of all time, Simply Tina documents her life, career, and relationship with celebrated music photographer Paul Cox. When Cox captured Tina’s legendary 1983 comeback performance with Heaven 17, it was the beginning of a friendship that would last for over two decades. During that time, Paul was commissioned to photograph Tina for numerous video shoots and live performances. This unique and intimate collection contains a variety of never-before-seen images, telling the story of Tina’s career through a mixture of live photos, video shoots, promo shots, candid images and sessions in the recording studio, as well as photographs with such high-profile friends as David Bowie, Rod Stewart, Bryan Adams and many more.”

The Little Guide To K-POP: The Sound Of The 21st Century
By Orange Hippo!

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Since its large-scale assault on the world stage a decade ago, K-pop has defied a cynical musical industry and defined a generation of musical talent, creating a soundtrack to the 21st century in the process. Today, more than 80 million K-pop albums are sold each year, with tens of billions of streams and MVs to boot, uniting the millions of K-pop fandoms together into one demilitarized, and friendly, army. Much like K-pop blends together the genres of electronic, pop, hip-hop, rock, and R&B, The Little Guide to K-Pop fuses together all the facts, stats, quotes, quips, wisdom and trivia you’ll need to keep up to speed with this lightning bolt of an evolving genre. From BTS to BlackPink, Seventeen to EXO, Red Velvet to SuperM, and everyone between, The Little Guide to K-Pop celebrates ten years of musical revolution, throwing a bite-size spotlight on the viral dance moves, songs, groups, agencies, MVs and the heart-throbbing idols at the center of this global cultural phenomenon.”

Nothing: John Cage And 4’33”
By Nicholas Day & Chris Raschka

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “What does nothing sound like? An offbeat history of John Cage’s 4’33”, a musical composition of blank bars, illustrated by Chris Raschka. One night in 1952, master pianist David Tudor took the stage in a barnlike concert hall. A packed audience waited with bated breath for him to start playing. Little did they know that the performance had already begun. David was performing 4’33”, whose purpose is to amplify the ambient sounds of whatever venue it inhabits. That shocking first performance earned the work plenty of haters; and yet the piece endures, “performed” by the smallest garage bands and the grandest symphonies alike, year after year. Its fans hear what Cage hoped we would hear: “Nothing” is never silent, and you don’t need a creative genius, a concert hall, or even a piano to hear something worthwhile. All you have to do is stop and listen. Nicholas Day’s text is reverent with a healthy drop of humor, warm and refined; two-time Caldecott Medalist Raschka’s childlike pencil-on-watercolor artwork is uninhibited and electrifying, with all the visionary spirit of the work it chronicles. Guaranteed to spark generative thought and lively debate among readers of all ages, Nothing is not to be missed.”

By Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara & Jade Orlando

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Beyoncé was quiet as a child but always enjoyed singing and dancing. At a young age, she went to see a concert, and from that moment on, she felt inspired to perform. She loved putting on shows for the people having their hair cut in her mom’s salon, but knew she was destined for a bigger audience. After winning a local talent show, Beyoncé joined the newly formed girl group Girls Tyme. The band eventually became Destiny’s Child and shot to stardom with their catchy R&B songs and fierce dance routines. As a solo artist, she has since achieved incredible success with numerous No. 1 hits, including Irreplaceable and Crazy in Love, and several critically acclaimed and award-winning albums, including I Am… Sasha Fierce, Lemonade and Renaissance. She has received the most Grammy nominations of any artist in history and is now one of the most influential people in the world. As well as being a performer, she is a mother, businesswoman, philanthropist, and role model for all those who want to reach for the stars.”

The Graphic History Of Hip Hop
By Walter Greason & Tim Fielder

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:The Graphic History of Hip Hop is a unique expression of artistic genius and historical analysis that celebrates the 50th anniversary and beyond of a music revolution that changed the world in the last 20th century. Writer Walter Greason and artist Tim Fielder have blended music, history, and graphic art into an unforgettable graphic novel experience for readers everywhere.”