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Books

XA special selection of disc guides and discographies, music history, record art books, graphic novels, and some nicely-priced remainders!

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Exact matches: 15
Exact matches1
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Ursula Block, Michael Glasmeier & OthersBroken Music – Artists' Recordworks (paperback – with bonus flexidisc) ... Book
Primary Information, 2018. New Copy ... $24.99 34.00
One of the coolest discographies you'll ever see in your life – a special book devoted to ultra-rare records created by artists as well as musicians – first published in 1989, and filled with a wealth of obscure records from the 50s through the 80s! Musical styles run from avant jazz to punk, 20th century classical, electronic music, and many other modes that defy easy definition – and the records include very limited vinyl pressed up for a show or an exhibition, to more widely-circulated material that's still pretty darn far left of center! The book also includes essays by Theodor Adorno, Rene Block, Jean Dubuffet, Laszlo Moholy Nagy, and others – and the discography is 200 pages, with listings for records by dozens of artists – including Max Ernst, Peter Gordon, Karel Appel, Hugo Ball, Andy Warhol, Yoshi Wada, Gerhard Richter, Yoko Ono, Hermann Nitsch, Albert Oehlen, Sol Lewitt, Laurie Anderson, John Cage, Conrad Schnitzler, Michael Snow, and many many others. The book is a hefty 279 pages, softcover, with black and white images throughout – and also includes a flexidisc of the Arditti String Quartet playing "Broken Music" by Milan Knizak. Book
(Limited edition – and comes with a bonus flexidisc!)

Exact matches2
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Cyrus BozorgmehrOnce Upon A Time In Shaolin – The Untold Story Of Wu Tang Clan's Million Dollar Secret Album, The Devaluation Of Music, & America's New Public Enemy No 1 (hardcover) ... Book
Flatiron Books, 2017. New Copy ... $4.99 26.99
The amazing story of the Wu-Tang's one-copy, million dollar album – a record that may be one of the greatest hoaxes in modern music, or a true marriage of hip hop and the art world! The record is hardly canonical material from the group, but it does represent a fascinating 21st Century evolution of that sense of image and marketing that always made their many projects of the 90s so revolutionary – and, like those, it also represents the work of a hip hop act to control game – instead of get bamboozled by it. The book tells the tale of the unique record and everything behind it – penned by an adviser on the project, who provides a huge amount of backstory and details that never made it to the press at the time. The story is maybe a bit self-congratulatory, and has maybe a bit too much "industry" at times – but given the content, that's also to be expected. 272 pages, hardcover. Book

Exact matches3
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Aaron CohenMove On Up – Chicago Soul Music & Black Cultural Power ... Book
University Of Chicago, 2019. New Copy ... $16.99 20.00
A tremendous achievement from music writer Aaron Cohen – a book that finally gets at the deeper, richer story of Chicago soul – the spirit of empowerment and pride that have always made us so honored to be part of the Windy City legacy! Cohen picks up where other soul writers have left off on Chicago – really looking at the shifts into the 70s, which included greater ties to the means of production, and an increased role in the social agenda as well – all part of an evolution in songwriting styles, production techniques, and the growing power of the full length album over the 7" single! Cohen looks at many key figures of the time – Earth Wind & Fire, Chaka Khan & Rufus, Curtis Mayfield, Phil Cohran & The Artistic Heritage Ensemble – and the very well-researched book is a delight to read throughout – easily the deepest work that Cohen's ever given us. 234 pages, softcover, with some black and white images – and a selected discography too. Book

Exact matches4
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
John CorbettPick Up The Pieces – Excursions In 70s Music (hardcover) ... Book
University Of Chicago, 2019. New Copy ... $22.99 30.00
Writer John Corbett has given us words on a huge variety of musical styles over the years – a fair bit of them left field and avant – but this time around, he's tackling the full range of 70s rock, pop, and soul music – in a huge book that's unlike anything he's ever written before! First off, the large volume is very personal – part listening autobiography, part paean to the musical giants who shaped the decade, and part hindsight record review of all the amazing sounds that were created during the 70s! The book follows the decade with year-by-year chapters – yet it's hardly a history at all – as Corbett picks key songs and albums as touchstones for each year – partly because of their impact, but more because of the power they had for him as a listener. The albums run the gamut – from Nursery Cryme by Genesis, to Les Stances A Sophie by The Art Ensemble Of Chicago, to Pink Moon by Nick Drake – and songs include "Sex Machine" by James Brown, "School's Out" by Alice Cooper, and "Long Time" by Boston. 496 pages, hardcover. Book

Exact matches5
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Elvis CostelloUnfaithful Music & Disappearing Ink (hardcover) ... Book
Penguin Books, 2015. New Copy ... $5.99 30.00
A wonderfully-written autobiography from Elvis Costello – a book that's not only completely illuminating for any fan of his music, but which stands quite strongly on his own, even if you're not a longtime fan of the man himself! The volume almost sets a new standard for musician autobiographies – as Costello approaches the project with the sort of zeal he's brought to his new "second role" in popular culture over the past few decades – that of being as much of a raconteur as a singer, as much as a spotlight on other genius as he is a genius himself – always handled with the sense of pointed prose and honesty you'd find in his music. The book is huge – and filled with black and white photos too. A heavy 672 pages, and hardcover. Book
(The spine has a small remainder mark.)

Exact matches6
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Thomas CrowLong March Of Pop – Art, Music, & Design 1930 to 1995 (hardcover) ... Book
Yale University Press, 2014. New Copy ... $12.99 34.98
One of the most compelling books we've ever read on Pop Art – and one of the most visually stunning, too – given that the heavy, hardcover volume is filled with images that go way past the familiar tropes of the movement! Author Thomas Crow takes a very longform look at Pop Art – the movement that flourished mostly in the early 60s, but which is presented here in the wider date brackets of the title – with an especially strong eye for the pre-60s forces that created it – both the role of some of its key artists in advertising and design in the 50s, but also the shifting scape of the gallery world in general, and even surprising contributions from forces like folk music and surf culture. The book is huge – oversize, and over 400 pages – with images not just of artworks, but also of the scenes and events as well – all to accompany the very thorough text by author Thomas Crow. Key figures include Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, David Hockney, and Claes Oldenberg – but there's lots more stops along the way. Book

Exact matches7
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Philip GlassWords Without Music – A Memoir (hardcover) ... Book
Liveright, 2015. New Copy ... $6.99 29.95
A hell of a memoir from Philip Glass – one that's breathtakingly open, and almost completely different than the man you'll know from his music! Glass is clearly a genius – we'd never dispute that fact – but despite the always-creative, always-perceptive mind that's transformed American music over the past 50 years, there's also a down-to-earth guy who had his own ups and downs – and who wasn't always on a clear path forward, but never failed to hold on to the interests and inspirations that drove him. The book certainly features lots of Glass on the music that he's known for – including key creative moments from the time before he made records – but we're almost more moved by the more common, everyday features of the memoir. Hardcover edition is over 400 pages, with some black and white images. Book

Exact matches8
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Ralph J GleasonMusic In The Air (hardcover) ... Book
Yale University Press, 2016. New Copy ... $6.99 30.00
Ralph J Gleason might just be one of the coolest cats to ever write about music – a key part of the San Francisco scene during the postwar years – where his talents helped illuminate both the worlds of art and music during the beat generation – then really helped shine a spotlight on all the cultural changes in the city during the 60s – which even led to Gleason's role in the founding of Rolling Stone magazine! Gleason always had a great eye (and ear) for things that were new and special, but never in a way that was slavish to the moment – or to its creator – and the book features an initial section on his writings on jazz and blues – with essays on John Coltrane, Charles Mingus, Carmen McRae, BB King, John Handy, Vince Guaraldi & Bola Sete, Cal Tjader, Ben Webster, the San Francisco Jazz scene, and other diverse topics. The second section features Gleason on folk and rock – with bits on Jefferson Airplane, Hank Williams, Lenny Bruce, Odetta, The Beatles, Bob Dylan, and others – and the final section features articles on politics and culture – covering topics that include Richard Nixon, radio payola, Law & Order, flower children, and other slices of society, seen from the Gleason viewpoint. Book is hardcover, and 309 pages. Book

Exact matches9
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Vivian GoldmanRevenge Of The She-Punks – A Feminist Music History From Poly Styrene To Pussy Riot ... Book
University Of Texas Press, New Copy ... About May 1, 2019 (delayed)
... Book

Exact matches10
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Rich KienzleGrand Tour – The Life & Music Of George Jones (hardcover) ... Book
Dey St, 2016. New Copy ... $5.99 27.99
George Jones is one of the most amazing talents in country music – and he was also one of the most messed-up cats on the Nashville scene – with a lifestyle and legend that maybe tops the decadence of some of the bigger rock stars of the 70s! Writer Rich Kienzle clearly loves Jones' music – as do we – but he's also not afraid to open up the darker corners of George's life – recounting his personal troubles that occurred alongside his cultural success – a long path to stardom that began with his boyhood in Beaumont, Texas – and which took a long time rising through a range of seminal recordings in the 50s, 60s, and 70s – all of which maybe showed Jones' growing and changing more than any other of his country music contemporaries. The full story is captured here – in a book that's 279 pages, hardcover, and has some black and white images. Book
(Spine has a small remainder mark.)

Exact matches11
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Oliver LomaxMood Modern – The Story Of Two Of The World's Greatest Recorded Music Libraries – KPM & Bruton Music ... Book
Vocalion (UK), 2018. New Copy ... $32.99 33.99
Maybe the best book we've ever seen on the secret world of sound library music – those non-commercial recordings that are made away from the public, then lent out for later use in radio, film, and TV! Over the years, crate-diggers have brought a new sort of appreciation to sound library albums – and two of the best labels of the genre are the important KPM and Bruton labels in the UK – both home to fantastic sounds from artists who include Keith Mansfield, Syd Dale, David Lindup, Johnny Pearson, and many others! Records by these artists have achieved great fame in recent years – but because these guys weren't rock stars, or jazz musicians, their stories – and the stories of their studios and labels – have really been overlooked. Writer Oliver Lomax – who's also reissued many sound library gems via the Vocalion label – really does a great job of looking at KPM and Bruton – with a huge amount of historical detail, countless interviews with key figures, and even helpful details on the larger recording scene in the UK. The book features two sections of images – one color, one black and white – but it's very different than sound library album cover books, as the main focus here is on text, which spans 465 pages in great detail. Book

Exact matches12
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Mike Reed, edCity Was Yellow – Chicago Jazz & Improvised Music 1980-2010 ... Book
Mike Reed, 2019. New Copy ... $28.99 35.00
A beautiful book on the Chicago jazz scene, and the things that make it really special – not the Windy City world of years back – when Ramsey Lewis and other big names were dominating things – but Chicago in more recent years, when the city has been a non-stop hotbed of continuous creative activity! Musician Mike Reed is the guiding force here – himself a key part of the growth of the past decade or two – and the presentation is very unique, with a short essay on a key musician, accompanied by a photo, then also a piece of music by the artist – transcribed on full sheet music, scoring a key contribution – in a way that makes the large volume both a history book and a book of sheet music as well. Entries are by key critical forces on the Chicago scene – John Corbett, Peter Margasak, John Litweiler, Neil Tesser, and others – and the presentation is as beautiful as the sounds it seeks to document. Entries include sections on Nicole Mitchell, Jason Adasiewicz, Ken Vandermark, Jeff Parker, Von Freeman, Mantana Roberts, Willie Pickens, and many others – and the book is oversize, 154 pages, softcover, and in two-tone color throughout. Book

Exact matches13
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Dmitry SamarovMusic To My Eyes (hardcover) ... Book
Tortoise Books, 2019. New Copy ... $25.99 29.99
A beautiful little book from one of the more inspired creative talents on the Chicago scene – writer/artist Dmitry Samarov, who's always got a talent for getting to the heart of the city – and for being very open about what matters, and why! This book is Dmitry's love letter to the Chicago music scene – and maybe music in general – and the volume mixes both Samarov's drawings and words, as he makes his way through shows, clubs, bars, and other points in the Windy City – all while also stopping to take us further back in time, to sounds that inspired him at an earlier age – all with a voice that's very honest and down to earth, and a bit of a change from the usual rock criticism you might read. The hardcover book looks like a little sketchbook, but it's much bigger than that – over 250 pages, with drawings throughout – covering subjects as wide-ranging as Peter Brotzmann, Neko Case, Mavis Staples, Marc Maron, James Blood Ulmer, David Yow, Handsome Family, Low, The Gories, Silver Jews, Joe Jackson, Rob Mazurek, Eleventh Dream Day, Mekons, Evan Dando, Shellac, Mission Of Burma, and countless others – including some film and literary talents as well. Book
(Limited edition first pressing!)

Exact matches14
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Mark Sinker, edHidden Landscape Once A Week – The Unruly Curiosity Of The British Music Press From the 60s to the 80s ... Book
Strange Attractor, New Copy ... About April 1, 2019 (delayed)
... Book

Exact matches15
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Graeme ThomsonComplicated Shadows – The Life & Music Of Elvis Costello ... Book
Canongate, 2004. New Copy ... About October 23, 2019
... Book
 
Partial matches: 4
Partial matches16
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Peter BenjaminsonMary Wells – The Tumultuous Life Of Motown's First Superstar (hardcover) ... Book
Chicago Review Press, 2012. New Copy ... $4.99 29.95
A stunning look at the great Mary Wells – one of Motown's first female acts of the 60s, and one of the decade's most important early soul figures as well! Mary's work on record is very well-known, but the story behind the music is completely different, and surprisingly dark at times – a tale of a talented artist often caught between larger corporate forces, and personal antagonists as well – not to mention her own personal demons. Peter Benjaminson does a great job of getting at all these details without being overly sensational – and he works in lots of wonderful personal recollections from friends and colleagues who really help illuminate the more private moments. The book is over 300 pages, hardcover, with some black and white photos. Book

Partial matches17
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Victor BockrisTransformer – The Complete Lou Reed Story ... Book
Harper (UK), 2014. New Copy ... $6.99 18.00
Lou Reed gave us some mighty fascinating music over his many years of recording – and the man himself also led an equally fascinating life – one that's covered here in very great detail, in a hefty biography that begins with Reed's troubled life as a child, to his early years moving between inspirations in literature and music, to his rise in fame with the Velvet Underground and role as one of the key underground New York figures for decades to come! The author gets at the way that Reed's always managed to challenge expectations while still remaining loyal to both himself and his friends and associates – a humanistic legacy that's almost as great as Lou's music itself. 500 pages, softcover, with some black and white images. Book

Partial matches18
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Chuck DChuck D Presents This Day In Rap & Hip Hop History (hardcover) ... Book
Octopus Books (UK), 2017. New Copy ... $8.99 39.99
A day-by-day list of important dates in hip hop – starting in 1973, and running all the way up to the present! Given that Chuck D's the man in charge, the set focuses most strongly on the 80s and early 90s – with very strong chapters on 1984 through 1995 – where date after date seems to resonate with the kind of important hip hop event that we can hardly believe actually "happened", as it's such a part of musical history now! Each date gets a small paragraph about the significance of the event that's named at the top – and these listings are interspersed with lots of full color images of hip hop legends – drawings, paintings, and other images provided by the book's co-contributors. 342 pages, hardcover, with lots of color images. Book

Partial matches19
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
A Alyce Claerbaut/David SchlesingerStrayhorn – An Illustrated Life (hardcover) ... Book
Bolden, 2015. New Copy ... Just Sold Out!
A beautiful tribute to one of the greatest composers of the 20th Century – Duke Ellington's longtime musical partner, the mighty Billy Strayhorn! The book presents Billy's life and music in a really great format – using songs as sidebars amidst the larger text – which is then illustrated with a huge amount of beautiful oversized photos, reproductions of scores, and other great images! There's also additional sidebars on Strayhorn from jazz peers who include Clark Terry, Nancy Wilson, Lena Horne, and many others – and the book has this wonderfully vivid approach that really does the creative genius as much justice on the page as he's gotten on record. 196 pages, hardcover, and filled with great images! Book
 
 
 



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