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

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

Your reading list takes you on a road trip without making you get off the couch.

Hang out with Billy Gibbons in Texas, meet up with country outlaws in Nashville, cruise the Blues Highway down to New Orleans, catch some classic shows at The Stone Pony in Asbury Park and revisit punk’s glory days in England — next week’s reading list will take you on a road trip without making you get off the couch. Let’s crack the covers:


Gimme All Your Lovin’: The Blues, Boogie, And Beard Of ZZ Top’s Billy F. Gibbons
By Christopher McKittrick

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Before launching the iconic Texas blues-rock trio ZZ Top, a young Billy Gibbons was hustling through the Lone Star State with The Moving Sidewalks. The small-time band had the chance of a lifetime when they opened for legendary rock guitar here Jimi Hendrix, who took the teenage Gibbons under his wing. Over 50 years later, Gibbons is one of the most recognizable rock musicians in American history. From ZZ Top’s early work in creating classic rock radio staples like La Grange and Tush in the 1970s to becoming a global phenomenon with innovative music videos in the early years of MTV, Gibbons has been the guiding hand behind ZZ Top’s evolution from the “Little Ol’ Band from Texas” to pop culture behemoth with the 1983 album Eliminator, which has sold over 20 million copies worldwide. As the band’s guitarist and main singer, Gibbons has led them to popularity and has gained immense respect among other music luminaries with guest appearances and collaborations with legends like B.B. King, Les Paul, John Mayall and Sammy Hagar before releasing two solo albums, Perfectamundo (2015) and The Big Bad Blues (2018), the latter being named Blues Rock Album of the Year by the Blues Music Awards. He has continued to lead ZZ Top after the death of longtime bandmate Dusty Hill in 2021 and shows no signs of slowing down from bringing his unique brand of Texas blues to the world.”

Hold To A Dream: A Newgrass Odyssey
By John Cowan & Jimmy Schwartz

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “For over 40 years, John Cowan has been both a participant in and chronicler of country and bluegrass music history. Whether as the lead singer and bassist of the genre-bending group New Grass Revival, a beloved personality on Nashville’s WSM radio (“the most famed country music station in the world”), or the newest member of The Doobie Brothers, Cowan has had a front-row seat to seismic changes in American roots music and in the recording industry as a whole. Hold To A Dream combines a rollicking account of Cowan’s life and career with interviews with some of the biggest names in country and bluegrass, including Kris Kristofferson, Bela Fleck, Loretta Lynn, Jim Messina, John Carter Cash, Sam Moore and Bernie Leadon. It’s a fascinating look into a half-century of tradition, experimentation, and innovation in one of the most vital and enduring of American musical genres.”

Willie, Waylon & The Boys: How Nashville Outsiders Changed Country Music Forever
By Brian Fairbanks

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The tragic and inspiring story of the leaders of outlaw country and their influence on today’s alt-county and Americana superstars, tracing a path from Waylon Jennings’ survival on ‘the day the music died’ through to The Highwaymen and on to the current creative and commercial explosion of Chris Stapleton, Brandi Carlile, Zach Bryan, Jason Isbell and The Highwomen. On Feb. 2, 1959, Jennings, bassist for his best friend Buddy Holly, gave up his seat on a charter flight. Jennings joked that he hoped the plane, leaving without him, would crash. When it did, killing all aboard, he was devastated and never fully recovered. Jennings switched to playing country, creating the outlaw movement and later forming a supergroup with Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson. The foursome battled addiction, record companies, ex-wives, violent fans, and the IRS and DEA en route to unprecedented mainstream success. In this book, Brian Fairbanks draws a line from Holly through the outlaw stars of the ’70s, all the way to the country headliners and more diverse, up-and-coming Nashville rebels of today. Thought-provoking and meticulously researched, Willie, Waylon, And The Boys ultimately shows how a 21-year-old bass player helped changed the course of American music.”

I Don’t Want to Go Home: The Oral History of the Stone Pony
By Nick Corasaniti

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In 1970, Asbury Park, N.J., was ripped apart by race riots that left the once-proud beach town an hour away from Manhattan smoldering, suffering and left for dead. Four years later, a few miles down the coast in Seaside Heights, two bouncers, Jack Roig and Butch Pielka, tired of the daily grind, dreamt of owning their own place. Underprepared and minimally funded, the two bought the first bar they considered, in a city where no one wanted to be, without setting one foot in the place. They named it The Stone Pony, and turned it into a rock club that Bruce Springsteen would soon call home and a dying town would call its beating heart. But the bar had to fight to survive. Despite its success in launching and attracting rockers like Stevie Van Zandt, “Southside” Johnny Lyon, and Springsteen, The Stone Pony — like everything in Asbury Park for the past half century — could only weather the drags of a depressed city for so long. How did The Stone Pony buck the odds to become a rock pilgrimage site? As Nick Corasaniti reveals, the stories of Asbury Park and the Stone Pony are that of modern America itself — a place of battered hopes, big dreams, and dogged resilience.”

Chuco Punk: Sonic Insurgency in El Paso
By Tara López

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Punk rock is known for its daring subversion, and so is the West Texas city of El Paso. In Chuco Punk, Tara López dives into the rebellious sonic history of the city, drawing on more than seventy interviews with punks, as well as unarchived flyers, photos, and other punk memorabilia. Connecting the scene to El Paso’s own history as a borderland, a site of segregation, and a city with a long lineage of cultural and musical resistance, López throws readers into the heat of backyard punk shows, the chaos of riots in derelict mechanic shops, and the thrill of skateboarding on the roofs of local middle schools. She reveals how, in this predominantly Chicano punk scene, women forged their own space, sound, and community. Covering the first roots of Chuco punk in the late 1970s through the early 2000s, López moves beyond the breakout bands to shed light on how the scene influenced not only the contours of sound and El Paso but the entire topography of punk rock.”

The Best Hits on the Blues Highway: Nashville to New Orleans on Route 61
By Amy Bizzarri

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The legendary Blues Highway has played a key role in the lives of countless musicians. Running from Nashville to New Orleans, there’s music around every bend. The greatest blues singers, rockers, and country wailers have all traveled this fateful road, U.S. Route 61. From the two-room home where “the King” was born to the original Heartbreak Hotel to the crossroads where Robert Johnson allegedly sold his soul to the devil for fame, every stop has a story to tell. Inspiring, practical, and entertaining, this is the premier guide to all the off-the-radar stops along America’s Blues Highway that you simply must not miss. Author Amy Bizzarri, road trip expert and author of the bestselling guide to the Mother Road, The Best Hits on Route 66, provides a comprehensive list of 100 unique stops that you’ll want to take a moment to explore as you journey along the fascinating, 730-mile route. Experience its world-famous music landmarks, tucked-away locations, and one-of-a-kind stops. Travel one section at a time or plan an extended trip along the entire route.”

Zerox Machine: Punk, Post-Punk and Fanzines in Britain, 1976-1988
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 United Kingdom, Matthew Worley describes and analyzes this transformative era, providing an intimate glimpse into the hopes and anxieties that shaped a generation. Far more than a showcase of covers, Zerox Machine examines the fanzines themselves, offering a rich tapestry of firsthand accounts, personal stories, and subcultural reflections. With meticulous research and insightful analysis, this book captures the spirit and essence of British youth culture, shedding new light on a pivotal movement in music history and offering a unique alternative history of Britain in the 1970s and ’80s.”

The Secret Public: How LGBTQ Performers Shaped Popular Culture (1955–1979)
By Jon Savage

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “An electrifying look at key moments in music and entertainment history between 1955 and 1979, which helped move gay culture from the margins to the mainstream and changed the face of pop forever — from the ambiguous sexuality of stars such as Little Richard in the 1950s through to David Bowie, glam rock and Sylvester’s You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real). The Secret Public is a searching examination of the fortitude and resilience of the gay community through the lens of popular music and culture; it reflects on the freedom found in divergence from the norm and reminds us of the need to be vigilant against those seeking to roll back the rights of marginalised groups.”

1999: The Year The Record Industry Lost Control
By Eamonn Forde

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “This is the story of a year in which the record business appeared to be firing on all cylinders, when the CD was at its commercial zenith, bringing in staggering sums of money for the global record business. The good times — and they were phenomenal times, both culturally and financially – looked like they would never end for record labels. Yet by December 1999, a bomb had been squarely set under their core business. All was to change with the arrival of digital music delivery. Eamonn Ford will tell the true story and not simply the oft-repeated tale of an industry complacent and caught napping.”