Music lovers, and particularly those who abhor the fragmentation of the music business, will enjoy this intelligent study....



An informative and analytical look at the ongoing dysfunctional relationship between country music and rock ’n’ roll.

Early rock by Chuck Berry, the Everly Brothers, and virtually every artist at Sun Records had country roots, and there were numerous instances of country tunes becoming pop successes. But the country-music establishment faced a perennial dilemma: should it remain true to its traditional hillbilly roots, or change in order to be more marketable? Movements such as the Nashville Sound, engineered primarily by influential (and recently deceased) guitarist/producer Chet Atkins, created music that satisfied the country market without alienating urban pop listeners. Then a growing country-rock community took shape in the 1960s, and when Bob Dylan issued his Nashville Skyline album and appeared on The Johnny Cash Show in 1969, the hybrid of musical styles entered the American mainstream. The journey of country-rock from Nashville to California, from Texas to Great Britain, is painstakingly and admirably traced by Doggett, former editor of Record Collector magazine, who gives proper credit to such obvious trailblazers as the Flying Burrito Brothers, The Byrds, and Gram Parsons, as well as to less heralded musicians like ex-Monkee Michael Nesmith, Chris Hillman, and Gene Clark. Country-rock’s identity crisis has continued for decades. Artists who tried to be progressive were often faced by a backlash, and for every crossover success, there would be rumblings for a counterculture. Doggett’s text is marred somewhat by his tendency to jump from one time period to another in an attempt to acknowledge a trend or movement, but by identifying as many contributors as possible, he demonstrates that “identity is less a matter of what you are than what you are perceived to be.” A list of 100 recommended country-rock albums appears at the end.

Music lovers, and particularly those who abhor the fragmentation of the music business, will enjoy this intelligent study. (20 pages b&w photos, not seen)

Pub Date: Sept. 28, 2001

ISBN: 0-14-200016-7

Page Count: 576

Publisher: Penguin

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2001

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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