Along with Rudy Vallee and Bing Crosby, Russ Columbo was the model crooner of the late 1920s, with a smoothly sentimental ballad style. His mellifluous but melancholy voice spoke to many Americans still drifting in the malaise after World War I and at the beginning of the depression. But unlike most crooners, Columbo not only wrote and sang songs about lovestruck dreamers but also lived out such stories, unable or unwilling to separate art from life. Based on material from the singers personal effects, including original music transcripts, photographs, diaries, and love letters, the biography also includes concise histories of the most important crooners and the controversies their theatrics often elicited.
Dick Heckstall-Smith describes the revolutionary founding years of British R&B in this entertaining book. Dick's unrelentingly honest account of his musical career also reflects on what it takes to be a full time musician, and grapples with the racism and drug abuse endemic in the music industry.
Great for acoustic guitarists who have learned the basics of the blues and are ready to take the next step. Begins with a review of technique, standard music notation and basic theory. Building on the foundations of Beginning Acoustic Blues, the bo
How do you survive leaving everything you know to try to reconstruct your life and future in a new way? What do you carry with you on your journey to the new place? Migration looms large as a theme in twentieth-century African American life. Bernice Johnson Reagon uses this theme as a centering structure for four essays that examine different genres of African American sacred music as they manifested themselves throughout the twentieth century and within her own life. The first essay examines the evolution of gospel music by looking at the work of Charles Albert Tindley, Thomas Andrew Dorsey, Reverend Smallwood Williams, Roberta Martin, Pearl William Jones, and Richard Smallwood. In the next essay Reagon relates the story of Deacon William Reardon and the prayer bands that carried the tradition of South Carolina spirituals through the twentieth century in the communities of Washington DC, and Baltimore. The concert spiritual tradition is the subject of the third essay, and the final essay explores how stories about African American women of the nineteenth century became a source of strength for Reagon in her development as an African American woman, singer, fighter, and scholar.
The companion volume to the four-part prime-time PBS series, American Roots Music digs down deep, past today's pop and rock, to uncover the blues, gospel, folk, country & western, and other traditional genres at the heart of the nation's musical heritage. Telling the compelling tales of the pioneers, entrepreneurs, and artists who brought it to the world stage, it profiles the Singing Brakeman Jimmie Rodgers, Delta bluesman Robert Johnson, pardoned convict Lead Belly, Dust Bowl poet laureate Woody Guthrie, electric blues pioneer Muddy Waters, honky-tonker Hank Williams, protester Pete Seeger, and blues-guitar legend B. B. King, among hundreds of colorful personalities.
Including incisive essays, informative sidebars, and firstperson narratives from key artists, this book presents both personal and historical perspectives. Portraits, performance shots, and ephemera such as sheet music and record sleeves illustrate the authoritative text.
A gripping narrative that captures the tumult and liberating energy of a nation in transition, Sweet Soul Music is an intimate portrait of the legendary performers--Sam Cooke, Ray Charles, James Brown, Solomon Burke, Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding, and Al Green among them--who merged gospel and rhythm and blues to create Southern soul music. Through rare interviews and with unique insight, Peter Guralnick tells the definitive story of the songs that inspired a generation and forever changed the sound of American music.
Spirituals provided the foundation for blues, jazz, and gospel music, and continue to be a rich part of today's musical culture. These solo piano arrangements of favorite spirituals feature lyrics, suggested fingerings, phrasing, pedal markings, and easy-to-read notation. Titles: Ain't-a That Good News? * Deep River * Every Time I Feel the Spirit * Ezekiel Saw the Wheel * Give Me That Old-Time Religion * Go Down, Moses * Go, Tell It on the Mountain * He's Got the Whole World in His Hands * I've Got Peace Like a River * Let Us Break Bread Together * Little David, Play on Your Harp * Michael, Row the Boat Ashore * My Lord, What a Morning * Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen * Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child * Swing Low, Sweet Chariot * There Is a Balm in Gilead * This Little Light of Mine * Wayfaring Stranger * We Are Climbing Jacob's Ladder * We Shall Overcome * Were You There?
Drawing on an encyclopedic knowledge of the music, social and cultural background and extensive interviews, Paul Stump has written an entertaining and vigorous study of an important area of popular music.