ANYTHING GOES: The World of Popular Music by David Dachs

ANYTHING GOES: The World of Popular Music

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Far from being a nonbook-oop-bop-shebam-cha-cha-cha-a-koo-koo-bop study of pop music, Anything Goes is a disarmingly literate survey of militant illiteracy and How It Crew, Perhaps the outstanding central fact about today's teen-age music is that anti-professionalism is its highest attraction and that success is a matter of packaging and selling techniques. At one point, Dachs quotes Mitchell Parish, lyricist of ""Star Dust"" and ""Deep Purple,"" with the lament that no pop publisher today would dare expose ""Star Dust"" to Teen Alley because the song is too good. This mammoth music structure rests upon teen-age emotion, hysteria and the adulation of such nonmusicians as the phallophoric Presley and the hermaphromopped Beatles, with their frankly Freudian appeal. Dachs sympathizes with the poor professional songwriter who can write better than is expected of him and he also ruefully reveals payola malpractices and other Byzantine dodges (ex., call girls) for influencing disc jockeys. Aside from the wild and wacky world of disc promotion, Dachs approaches the financial structure of the industry with the solemnity of Harvard Business School (which indeed did its own study of FM radio). His battle cry for a new excellence in pop music, however, seems utterly visionary.

Publisher: obbs-Merrill