Sunday, July 19, 2015

Rock 'n' Roll reads: Guitar Player, Bobby Fuller, Canadian music and prog rock get their due

With summer in full swing, now is a good chance to spend some quality time reading some great new music books and concert films.

Title: Guitar Player: The Inside Story of the First Two Decades of the Most Successful Guitar Player Magazine Ever
Authors: Edited by Jim Crockett with Dara Crockett
Publisher: Backbeat Books
Tell me more: With a story as colorful and diverse as Guitar Player magazine, it's no wonder that long-time editor and publisher Jim Crockett enlists a talented and vast field off friends, family, writers and famous fret-masters to help pull together the seminal publication's early years in the outstanding Guitar Player: The Inside Story of the First Two Decades of the Most Successful Guitar, which at nearly 300 pages also boasts countless great archival images from the magazine and those who helped guide it from its founding in 1967 to its 1989 sale by founder Bud Eastman and Jim Crockett. It's unusual for a magazine to get this kind of celebration, but then Guitar Player was no mere magazine. It helped inspire generations of guitar greats, many of whom have written tributes in the volume. Among the heartfelt contributions come from the celebrated likes of Joe Perry (Aerosmith), Steve Morse (Kansas, Deep Purple), Craig Chaquico (Jefferson Starship) and George Benson. Information:
Get 'Guitar Player: The Inside Story of the First Two Decades of the Most Successful Guitar Magazine Ever' here

Title: I Fought the Law: The Life and Strange Death of Bobby Fuller
Authors: Miriam Linna and Randell Fuller
Publisher: Kicks Books
Tell me more: Although just about every rock 'n' roll fan knows the timeless 1966 hit "I Fought The Law," not very many know very much about the young Texas native who continued to successfully champion Buddy Holly-styled American rock during the midst of the British Invasion. Now the full story of Bobby Fuller (1942-1966) is assessed by the singer-songwriter-guitarist's brother Randell Fuller (the bassist of the Bobby Fuller Four) and Miriam Linna in the rewarding I Fought the Law: The Life and Strange Death of Bobby Fuller. Nearly 50 years after the death of his brother (Bobby Fuller was found dead at the age of 23 on July 18, 1966 in the front seat of a car doused in gasoline outside his Hollywood apartment), Randell Fuller finally opens up to share the full story about growing up with Bobby Fuller, their youth and the mysterious events that continue to surround the young star's death. Information:
Buy 'I Fought The Law: The Life and Strange Death of Bobby Fuller' here

Title: The History of Canadian Rock 'n' Roll
Author: Bob Mersereau
Publisher: Backbeat Books
Tell me more: Until recently, Canadian artists never seemed to receive the acclaim of their American and British counterparts. The History of Canadian Rock 'n' Roll does a good job of celebrating the far-flung contributions of Canada's music notables, including Neil Young, Arcade Fire, Joni Mitchell, Rush, Alanis Morrissette, Bryan Adams, Leonard Cohen, The Band and dozens more. It's nice to see the author hasn't forgotten to feature some of the nation's under-the-radar heroes including the great singer-songwriter-guitar great Bruce Cockburn and singer-songwriter k.d. lang. The book provides a fast-paced and informative read. The sterling volume's foreword comes courtesy of Rush drummer Neil Peart. Information: 
Purchase 'The History of Canadian Rock n Roll' here 

Title: The Living Years: The First Genesis Memoir
Author: Mike RutherfordPublisher: Thomas Dunne
Tell me more: As one of the founders of British band Genesis (along with Phil Collins and Peter Gabriel), Mike Rutherford has a story to tell via the compelling The Living Years: The First Genesis Memoir. Now, the famed guitarist chronicles his life as a musician while also delving into his own family's history and the complex relationships that forge who we are. While learning about Rutherford and the members of Genesis, there is also a parallel look at Rutherford's father, Captain William Rutherford, and the events and places where life took Mike Rutherford in Genesis, as well as with his '80s solo project Mike + The Mechanics. Information:
Get 'The Living Years: The First Genesis Memoir' here

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