Equal parts biography, musicology, and cultural history, Dilla Time chronicles the life and legacy of J Dilla, a musical genius who transformed the sound of popular music for the twenty-first century.
A stirring defense of Sinéad O’Connor’s music and activism, and an indictment of the culture that cancelled her. In 1990, Sinéad O’Connor’s video for “Nothing Compares 2 U” turned her into a superstar. Two years later, an appearance on Saturday Night Live turned her into a scandal. For many people—including, for years, the author—what they knew of O’Connor stopped there. Allyson McCabe believes it’s time to reassess our old judgments about Sinéad O’Connor and to expose the machinery that built her up and knocked her down. Addressing triumph and struggle, sound and story, Why Sinéad O’Connor Matters argues that its subject has been repeatedly manipulated and misunderstood by a culture that is often hostile to women who speak their minds (in O’Connor’s case, by shaving her head, championing rappers, and tearing up a picture of the pope on live television). McCabe details O’Connor’s childhood abuse, her initial success, and the backlash against her radical politics without shying away from the difficult issues her career raises. She compares O’Connor to Madonna, another superstar who challenged the Catholic Church, and Prince, who wrote her biggest hit and allegedly assaulted her. A journalist herself, McCabe exposes how the media distorts not only how we see O’Connor but how we see ourselves, and she weighs the risks of telling a story that hits close to home. In an era when popular understanding of mental health has improved and the public eagerly celebrates feminist struggles of the past, it can be easy to forget how O’Connor suffered for being herself. This is the book her admirers and defenders have been waiting for.
The cassette tape was revolutionary. Cheap, portable, and reusable, this small plastic rectangle changed music history. This entertaining book charts the journey of the cassette from its invention in the early 1960s to its Walkman-led domination in the 1980s to decline at the birth of compact discs to resurgence among independent music makers.
This is the first comprehensive history of goth music and culture. Across more than 500 pages, John Robb explores the origins and legacy of this enduring scene, which has its roots in the post-punk era.Drawing on his own experience as a musician and journalist, Robb covers the style, the music and the clubs that spawned the culture, alongside political and social conditions. He also reaches back further to key historic events and movements that frame the ideas of goth, from the fall of Rome to Lord Byron and the romantic poets, European folk tales, Gothic art and the occult. Finally, he considers the current mainstream goth of Instagram influencers, film, literature and music.The art of darkness features interviews with Andrew Eldritch, Killing Joke, Bauhaus, The Cult, The Banshees, The Damned, Einstürzende Neubauten, Johnny Marr, Trent Reznor, Adam Ant, Laibach, The Cure, Nick Cave and many more. It offers a first-hand account of being there at the gigs and clubs that made the scene happen.
Celebrate the music that has shaped the culture and given us some of the greatest hits of all time with this vibrantly illustrated anthology, featuring 50 of the most lauded, controversial, and iconic hip-hop albums!From underground roots to mainstream popularity, hip-hop's influence on music and entertainment around the world has been nothing short of extraordinary. Ode to Hip-Hop chronicles the journey with profiles of fifty albums that have defined, expanded, and ultimately transformed the genre into what it is today. From 2 Live Crew's groundbreaking As Nasty As They Wanna Be in 1989 to Cardi B's similarly provocative Invasion of Privacy almost thirty years later, and more, Ode to Hip-Hop covers hip-hop from coast to coast. Organized by decade and with sidebars on fashion, mixtapes, and key players throughout, the result is a comprehensive homage to hip-hop, published just in time for the fiftieth anniversary. Enjoyed in the club, at a party, through speakers or headphones--the albums in this book deserve to be listened to again and again, for the next fifty years and beyond.Albums featured: Kurtis Blow (self-titled, 1980); The Message (Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, 1982); Run-D.M.C (self-titled, 1984), Hot, Cool & Vicious (Salt-N-Pepa, 1986); Paid in Full (Eric B. & Rakim, 1987); Straight Outta Compton (N.W.A, 1988); Lyte as a Rock (MC Lyte, 1988); As Nasty as They Wanna Be (2 Live Crew, 1989); Mama Said Knock You Out (LL Cool J, 1990); People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm (A Tribe Called Quest, 1990); The Chronic (Dr. Dre, 1992); Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) (Wu-Tang Clan, 1993); Black Reign (Queen Latifah, 1993); Doggystyle (Snoop Dogg, 1993); Illmatic (Nas, 1994); Ready to Die (The Notorious B.I.G., 1994); The Diary (Scarface, 1994); Funkdafied (Da Brat, 1994); Mystic Stylez (Three 6 Mafia, 1995); Hard Core (Lil' Kim, 1996); Ridin' Dirty (UGK, 1996); All Eyez On Me (2Pac, 1996); Supa Dupa Fly (Missy Elliott, 1997); Aquemini (Outkast, 1998); The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill (Lauryn Hill, 1998); It's Dark and Hell Is Hot (DMX, 1998); Things Fall Apart (The Roots, 1999); Da Baddest B***h (Trina, 2000); The Marshall Mathers LP (Eminem, 2000); The Blueprint (JAY-Z, 2001); Lord Willin' (Clipse, 2002); Get Rich or Die Tryin' (50 Cent, 2003); The College Dropout (Kanye West, 2004); Let's Get It: Thug Motivation 101 (Young Jeezy, 2005); King (T.I., 2006); Lupe Fiasco's the Cool (Lupe Fiasco, 2007); The Carter III (Lil Wayne, 2008); The State vs. Radric Davis (Gucci Mane, 2009); Pink Friday (Nicki Minaj, 2010); Watch the Throne (JAY-Z & Kanye West, 2011); Nothing Was the Same (Drake, 2013); To Pimp a Butterfly (Kendrick Lamar, 2015); DS2 (Future, 2015); Culture (Migos, 2017); Invasion of Privacy (Cardi B., 2018); Whack World (Tierra Whack, 2018); Eve (Rapsody, 2019); City on Lock (City Girls, 2020); Montero (Lil Nas X, 2021); Traumazine (Megan Thee Stallion, 2022)
New York Times bestselling Music Is History combines Questlove’s deep musical expertise with his curiosity about history, examining America over the past fifty years—now in paperback Focusing on the years 1971 to the present, Questlove finds the hidden connections in the American tapes, whether investigating how the blaxploitation era reshaped Black identity or considering the way disco took an assembly-line approach to Black genius. And these critical inquiries are complemented by his own memories as a music fan and the way his appetite for pop culture taught him about America. A history of the last half-century and an intimate conversation with one of music’s most influential and original voices, Music Is History is a singular look at contemporary America.
"As an innovative and constantly inventive jazz pianist, Brad Mehldau has attracted a sizable following over the years, one that has grown to expect a singular, intense experience from his performances. With Formation, Brad seeks to extend that experience to the page, by sharing some of the deeply personal elements of his life, and how these came together for him to become the musician and person that he is today. For the first time, he offers an in-depth look at how he came to understand his adoption, survive sexual abuse, and overcome heroin addiction. The book creates a vibrantly-written portrait of the jazz world in New York in the late 1980s and early 1990s, showing how a generation of musicians met and sparked off one another to take the music in new directions, drawing on a wealth of influences but also keeping sight of tradition, including those rooted in both the jazz and classical worlds. The atmosphere of the clubs, the creative scene in Manhattan and Brooklyn, and Brad's early experiences of touring are brilliantly brought to life. The formation of the "Mood Swing" quartet with Joshua Redman is described
A lively, engaging guide to music around the world, from prehistory to the present Human beings have always made music. Music can move us and tell stories of faith, struggle, or love. It is common to all cultures across the world. But how has it changed over the millennia? Robert Philip explores the extraordinary history of music in all its forms, from our earliest ancestors to today’s mass-produced songs. This is a truly global story. Looking to Europe, South America, Asia, Africa, and beyond, Philip reveals how musicians have been brought together by trade and migration and examines the vast impact of colonialism. From Hildegard von Bingen and Clara Schumann to Bob Dylan and Aretha Franklin, great performers and composers have profoundly shaped music as we know it. Covering a remarkable range of genres, including medieval chant, classical opera, jazz, and hip hop, this Little History shines a light on the wonder of music—and why it is treasured across the world.
NATIONAL BESTSELLERAN NPR BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR“Ozzi’s reporting is strong, balanced and well told...a worthy successor to its obvious inspiration, Michael Azerrad’s 2001 examination of the ’80s indie underground, Our Band Could Be Your Life.”—New York Times Book ReviewA raucous history of punk, emo, and hardcore’s growing pains during the commercial boom of the early 90s and mid-aughts, following eleven bands as they “sell out” and find mainstream fame, or break beneath the weight of it all.Punk rock found itself at a crossroads in the mid-90’s. After indie favorite Nirvana catapulted into the mainstream with its unexpected phenomenon, Nevermind, rebellion was suddenly en vogue. Looking to replicate the band’s success, major record labels set their sights on the underground, and began courting punk’s rising stars. But the DIY punk scene, which had long prided itself on its trademark authenticity and anti-establishment ethos, wasn’t quite ready to let their homegrown acts go without a fight. The result was a schism: those who accepted the cash flow of the majors, and those who defiantly clung to their indie cred.In Sellout, seasoned music writer Dan Ozzi chronicles this embattled era in punk. Focusing on eleven prominent bands who made the jump from indie to major, Sellout charts the twists and turns of the last “gold rush” of the music industry, where some groups “sold out” and rose to surprise super stardom, while others buckled under mounting pressures. Sellout is both a gripping history of the music industry’s evolution, and a punk rock lover’s guide to the chaotic darlings of the post-grunge era, featuring original interviews and personal stories from members of modern punk’s most (in)famous bands: Green Day Jawbreaker Jimmy Eat World Blink-182 At the Drive-In The Donnas Thursday The Distillers My Chemical Romance Rise Against Against Me!
The untold story of Chicago’s pivotal role as a country and folk music capital. Chicago is revered as a musical breeding ground, having launched major figures like blues legend Muddy Waters, gospel soul icon Mavis Staples, hip-hop firebrand Kanye West, and the jazz-rock band that shares its name with the city. Far less known, however, is the vital role Chicago played in the rise of prewar country music, the folk revival of the 1950s and 1960s, and the contemporary offspring of those scenes. In Country and Midwestern, veteran journalist Mark Guarino tells the epic century-long story of Chicago’s influence on sounds typically associated with regions further south. Drawing on hundreds of interviews and deep archival research, Guarino tells a forgotten story of music, migration, and the ways that rural culture infiltrated urban communities through the radio, the automobile, and the railroad. The Midwest’s biggest city was the place where rural transplants could reinvent themselves and shape their music for the new commercial possibilities the city offered. Years before Nashville emerged as the commercial and spiritual center of country music, major record labels made Chicago their home and recorded legendary figures like Bill Monroe, The Carter Family, and Gene Autry. The National Barn Dance—broadcast from the city’s South Loop starting in 1924—flourished for two decades as the premier country radio show before the Grand Ole Opry. Guarino chronicles the makeshift niche scenes like “Hillbilly Heaven” in Uptown, where thousands of relocated Southerners created their own hardscrabble honky-tonk subculture, as well as the 1960s rise of the Old Town School of Folk Music, which eventually brought national attention to local luminaries like John Prine and Steve Goodman. The story continues through the end of the twentieth century and into the present day, where artists like Jon Langford, The Handsome Family, and Wilco meld contemporary experimentation with country traditions. Featuring a foreword from Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Robbie Fulks and casting a cross-genre net that stretches from Bob Dylan to punk rock, Country and Midwestern rediscovers a history as sprawling as the Windy City—celebrating the creative spirit that modernized American folk idioms, the colorful characters who took them into new terrain, and the music itself, which is still kicking down doors even today.
Co-authored by Hip-Hop legend LL COOL J, acclaimed journalist Vikki Tobak and Rock The Bells’ editorial director Alec Banks, this momentous volume celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of the influential culture, sound, and preeminent voices of American Hip-Hop music.LL COOL J Presents The Streets Win commemorates the birth, rise, and progression of Hip-Hop’s culture and its indisputable impact on American music over the past fifty years. Vikki Tobak, Alec Banks and LL COOL J reveal the journey of this music genre through rarely seen photographs of Hip-Hop from its inception, from block party performances to street shots, parties, sessions at recording studios, and more. The imagery is accompanied by first-person recollections from Hip-Hop’s MCs, B-Boys, graffiti artists, and DJs who share how they fell in love with Hip-Hop, broke into the business, their artistic and personal style inspiration, and their views on Hip-Hop’s culture and music. Stories are told by icons DJ Kool Herc, Salt-N-Pepa, MC Lyte, KRS-One, Eminem, Mary J. Blige, Grandmaster Flash, Run-D.M.C., Beastie Boys, De La Soul, Slick Rick, Public Enemy, Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Nas, A Tribe Called Quest, Big Daddy Kane, Fat Joe, DJ Khaled and more.Each page features a treasure trove of images by celebrated Hip-Hop photographers including Joe Conzo Jr., Ernie “Brother Ernie” Paniccioli, Jonathan Mannion, Janette Beckman, Estevan Oriol, Jamel Shabazz, Mike Miller, Clay Patrick McBride, and others who documented the growth; ephemera such as album covers, notebook drawings, and lyrics; party announcements; street scenes; clothing; and graffiti art. This definitive volume of the most important origin stories from the last fifty years of Hip-Hop is the perfect gift for music and photography fans.
Highways and Heartaches: How Ricky Skaggs, Marty Stuart, and Children of the New South Saved the Soul of Country Music
In a dim clearing off a county road in Kentucky sits a sagging outdoor stage buried in moss and dead leaves. It used to be the centrepiece of carnival-like Sunday afternoons where local guitarists, fiddlers and mandolin players hammered out old mountain ballads and legends from the dawn of country music performed their classic hits. Most of the musicians who showed up have long since passed, but Nashville stars Ricky Skaggs and Marty Stuart survive. They were barely teenagers in the early 1970s when they visited this stage in the care of legends Ralph Stanley and Lester Flatt, respectively. Skaggs and Stuart followed their bosses to dozens of stages throughout Appalachia and deeper into the American southland. They were the children, absorbing the wondrous music and strange dramas around them as they became innovators and living symbols of country music.Highways and Heartaches takes readers on the rural circuit Skaggs and Stuart travelled, where an acoustic sound first assembled by masters such as Bill Monroe, Earl Scruggs, and Mother Maybelle Carter ruled the day. The young men were heirs to a bluegrass tradition transmitted to them early in life. One part mountain soul and another African American-influenced rhythm, the music they received was alternately celebrated and neglected in the more than fifty years after the two met in 1971, but since then it has never stopped evolving and influencing the wider American culture thanks to Skaggs and Stuart and other actors in this book, such as Jerry Douglas, Tony Rice, Keith Whitley, Emmylou Harris, and Linda Ronstadt. Riveting portraits of Johnny Cash, Ralph Stanley, Lester Flatt and other heartland-born figures emerge, too.Moulded by forces in post-war southern culture such as racial conflict, fringe politics, evangelicalism, growing federal government influence, and stubborn patterns of Appalachian living and thinking, Skaggs and Stuart injected the spirit of bluegrass into their hard-wrought experiments in mainstream country music later in life, fuelling the profitability and credibility of the fabled genre. Skaggs's new traditionalism of the 1980s, integrating mountain instruments with elements of contemporary country music, created a new sound for the masses and placed him in the vanguard of Nashville's recording artists while Stuart embraced seminal influences and attitudes from the riches of American culture to produce a catalogue of significant recordings.Skaggs and Stuart's friendship took years to jell, but their similar pathways reveal a shared dedication to the soul of country music and highlight the curious day-to-day experiences of two lads growing up on the demanding rural route in bluegrass culture. Their journeys-populated by grizzled mentors, fearsome undertows, and cultural upheaval-influenced their creativity and, ultimately, cut life-giving tributaries in the ungainly, eternal story of country music.
The story of recorded sound – the technological developments, the people that made them happen and the impact they had on society – from the earliest inventions via the phonograph to LPs, EPs and the recent resurgence of vinyl. While Thomas Edison's phonograph, the first device that could both record and reproduce sound, represented an important turning point in the story of recorded sound, it was really only the tip of the iceberg, and came after decades of invention, tinkering and experiment. Into the Groove tells the story of the birth of recorded sound, from the earliest serious attempts in the 1850s all the way up to the vinyl resurgence we’re currently enjoying. This book celebrates the ingenuity, rivalries and science of the modulated groove. Vinyl collector and music buff Jonathan Scott dissects a mind-blowing feat that we all take for granted today – the domestication of sound. He examines the first attempts to record and reproduce sounds, the origin of the phonograph, and the development of commercial shellac discs. Later he moves through the fascinating story of the LP record, from the rise of electric recording to the fall of 7-inch vinyl, the competing speed and format wars, and an epilogue that takes the story up to the present-day return of vinyl to vogue. Into the Groove is the story of the science of sound – the technological developments, the humans that made them happen and the impact they had on society. It uncovers tales of intrigue and betrayal, court battles and lesser-known names who are often left out of most histories. Read this book, and find a new appreciation of the not-so-simple black disc that holds a special place in the history of music and sound.
A love letter to Korean pop sensation BTS and an ode to fandom. An Atlantic Edition, featuring long-form journalism by Atlantic writers, drawn from contemporary articles or classic storytelling from the magazine’s 165-year archive.The supersonic rise of the Korean pop group BTS may seem enigmatic to some, but for Lenika Cruz, senior culture editor at The Atlantic, their worldwide fame is obvious. As Cruz argues in On BTS: Pop Music, Fandom, Sincerity, the group’s trajectory—debuting on a relatively obscure label in Korea to becoming a global household name in just a few years—is a natural result of their authenticity, artistry, energy, social conscientiousness, and general coolness. As a non-English-language band finding record-breaking international success, BTS is helping usher in a fresh, more inclusive era in the music industry. In this love letter to the once-in-a-generation pop sensation, Cruz narrates her own unexpected journey into the fandom, and in doing so might welcome you in, too.