Recommended Reading

The following Web sites, books and magazines were all important sources of information that I used while writing this book, and are all recommended for further information on the subject of rock music.

Web Sites

  1. All Music Guide — An exhaustive reference guide to musicians and their works.
  2. CDDB — The CD database lists every track on practically every CD ever released. Now provided by Gracenote.
  3. Ethan Russell — This guy photographed many sixties rock groups, and many of his photos ended up as classic album covers (Who’s Next, for example). He has also published a book with many of his best photos and his recollections of the period. This is a great Web site with many classic images of the artists discussed in Reason to Rock.
  4. Rock’s Back Pages — The Online Library of Rock & Roll. A great online collection of works by classic rock writers.
  5. — Rock critics talking to, about, and with each other. A great, informative site.
  6. RockMine — Rockmine is Europe’s largest independent rock music archive.
  7. — A comprehensive online resource on the history of rock music, by Piero Scaruffi.

  1. The Beatles Anthology — A wonderful book by and about The Beatles. The text is collaborative, as was their music, with comments from individual members and associates of the Fab Four telling the story. Beautifully illustrated. Completely indexed. There is a temptation to simply put this huge book on a coffee table and admire it from afar, or dip into it randomly whenever you have a spare moment, but it really deserves far more. This is the definitive autobiography of the most influential group of individuals in the sixties, and arguably in the last half of the twentieth century.
  2. The Complete Beatles Chronicles, by Mark Lewisohn, Peter Guzzardi (Editor). Lewisohn has done a series of books chronicling in great detail The Beatles’ daily lives, in and out of the recording studio. This book is somewhat of a compilation, keeping most of the relevant detail. A must-read for fans and students of The Beatles.
  3. Flowers in the Dustbin: The Rise of Rock and Roll, 1947-1977 — A good, recently published, summary of the era of classic rock music, written by James Miller. The book proceeds chronologically, with chapters on significant artists or movements within the period.
  4. Lillian Roxon’s Rock Encyclopedia — Before the World Wide Web, before CDDB and the All Music Guide, there was the Rock Encyclopedia, an exhaustive reference on the subject of rock music, back when such a thing could fit into a single volume. Published in 1969.
  5. The Mansion on the Hill: Dylan, Young, Geffen, and Springsteen and the Head-on Collision of Rock and Commerce — Fred Goodman’s impeccably researched back story of the businessmen involved in the rise of rock and their relationships to the art and the artists. This is a fascinating study, and especially interesting in its portrayal of the relationship of rock critics and criticism to the businessmen and the artists.
  6. Rock And Roll Is Here To Stay — A Norton anthology on rock music, edited by William McKeen. A great primer on rock music, with writings from some of the best rock critics, excerpts from the best books on rock, and writings from rock artists themselves. Certainly a great place to begin an exploration of rock literature.
  7. The Role of Rock — A very good work on the themes of rock, as expressed in words and music, and the cause and effect relationships between these themes and social change.
  8. White Bicycles: Making Music in the 1960s — Joe Boyd was a producer of artists such as Fairport Convention, The Incredible String Band and Nick Drake. He has written a book about his involvement in music in the sixties, and it is a fascinating, enlightening text about the factors that contributed to the production of so much great music during this time, as well as other factors leading to the downfall of so many of these artists and their ideals in the following decades.

  1. Tom Dowd and the Language of Music — Tom Dowd was a recording engineer and later a producer who worked with many jazz, R & B and rock artists, including artists as diverse as John Coltrane, Ray Charles, Cream and Derek and the Dominos. This film is a loving tribute to his memory, a testament to his many talents and accomplishments, and an important record of the influence that recording techniques had on the development of rock as an art form.

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