Looking to catch up on some good reading while learning about a wide range of groundbreaking rock artists? There are a number of outstanding new books available covering some of classic rock's most notable names including Fleetwood Mac, Freddie Mercury, Led Zeppelin, Frank Zappa and David Bowie.
Title: Fleetwood Mac: The Complete Illustrated History
Author: Richie Unterberger
Publisher: Voyageur Press
Hardcover edition: 208 pages
Tell me more: Although Fleetwood Mac formed back in the late 1960s, it has taken until 2016 for a comprehensive fully-illustrated history of the legendary group to make it to print. "Fleetwood Mac: The Complete Illustrated History" is a wonderful hardcover book worth the wait; the book's clear narrative cuts a smart path through the band's many phases and line-up changes, all while providing great photos from Fleetwood Mac's colorful career. Author Richie Unterberger has used his own insights as well as well-researched resources to put together a compelling tale of interest to hardcore and casual fans of the group. Information: QuartoKnows.com.
Get 'Fleetwood Mac: The Complete Illustrated History' here
Title: Freddie Mercury: A Kind of Magic
Author: Mark Blake
Publisher: Backbeat Books
Hardcover edition: 224 pages
Tell me more: This week (Sept. 5, 2016) marked what would have been Queen singer Freddie Mercury's 70th birthday. The legendary singer-songwriter-keyboardist was among rock's greatest ever frontman; Mercury was blessed with a four-octave range as a singer and a personality to match who sadly died of of AIDS in 1991. He was only 45. Now his life is celebrated in the wonderful "Freddie Mercury: A Kind of Magic," an illustrated hardcover that includes childhood and teen photos of Farrokh Bulsara, quotes from the singer and those who knew him, a wonderful discography covering his solo work and releases with Queen. Author Mark Blake's wonderful introduction in the book provides insight into what readers will love about this great book: "This book…is the story of the man Freddie Mercury was and the man he became. It's a celebration of his humor and showmanship, but also of a musician and songwriter whose talents were sometimes lost behind that larger-than-life persona." Information: freddiemercury.halleonardbooks.com.
Purchase 'Freddie Mercury: A Kind of Magic' here
Title: Led Zeppelin: Day by Day
Author: Marc Roberty
Publisher: Backbeat Books
Hardcover edition: 278
Tell me more: Whatever happens in or out of the courtroom as it relates to the ongoing high-profile plagiarism dispute over Led Zeppelin's beloved "Stairway to Heaven" it is certain that the rock quartet's legacy as one of the most important rock bands of the 20th century is set in stone. Marc Roberty's involving "Led Zeppelin: Day by Day" traces the history of singer Robert Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page, bassist-keyboardist John Paul Jones and drummer John Bonham (the latter who died in 1980) from the group's first rehearsal in Soho in 1968 through the legendary albums, concerts and even recording sessions that propelled their arc as both a band and performers. Beautifully illustrated, "Led Zeppelin: Day by Day" is truly a must-have hardcover volume for fans of the band. Information: backbeatbooks.com.
Buy 'Led Zeppelin - Day by Day' here
Title: Frank Zappa FAQ: All That's Left to Know About the Father of Invention
Author: John Corcelli
Publisher: Backbeat Books
Paperback: 328 pages
Tell me more: Just because commercial radio and the celebrity-focused entertainment media have never given singer-songwriter-composer-guitar virtuoso-movie producer Frank Zappa his due doesn't mean discerning fans can't expand their appreciation of the late artist. Sure, popular hit makers such as Michael Jackson and the Beach Boys have been featured as part of Backbeat Books FAQ series, but now music fans can add Zappa's legacy to the list. Author (and long-time Zappa fan) John Corcelli has written a clear and concise volume that is flat-out essential for fans of Zappa. The author truly is able to capture the many artistic worlds explored by Zappa, including his multi-dimensional music endeavors, his film and video productions, and his activism. Another wonderful part of the book is how author John Corcelli celebrates many of Zappa's alumni, namely musical greats such as Terry Bozzio, Flo and Eddie (of the Turtles fame), Steve Vai and others who had performed on stage or in the recording studio in the service of Zappa's music. Information: backbeatbooks.com.
Get 'Frank Zappa FAQ: All That's Left to Know About the Father of Invention (FAQ Series)' here
Title: David Bowie – Starman: A Coloring Book
Author: Laura Coulman
Illustrator: Coco Balderrama
Publisher: Plexus Publishing
Paperback: 64 pages
Tell me more: "David Bowie – Starman: A Coloring Book" works on so many great levels. Firstly, published not long after the death of groundbreaking artist David Bowie earlier this year, the title is filled with tributes to his legacy from a number of his contemporaries including Elton John, Michael Stipe and Sir Paul McCartney. There is also trivia and information on the reclusive artist, and trivia on some of his greatest works. Then, there is the fact that it is a cool reason to get out the Crayons and color. And if the book gets the young ones interested in one of the greatest singer-songwriters of rock, that's an even bigger bonus. Information: Amazon.com.
Grab 'David Bowie: Starman: A Coloring Book' here