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by Norman Warwick

With Christmas just around the corner, and that means gift giving season is also afoot, I read a roulette of reporters on Paste on-line magazine (oops) and hurried down to interview room 13 and ran over the reports with my code-breaker to see what names I could force them to spill so that, if any of our readers have a devoted music fan or pop culture buff in their life, they might consider buying such family and friends one of the year’s best music books. Under questioning, recommendations were uttered covering many genres (rock, K-pop, country, punk, hip-hop and more) and in several formats (from memoirs and biographies to cultural essays and songwriter guides). I made notes that, of course, are highly confidential, so please don´t look at these pages while I go and ask my wife for another cup of coffee.

confidential: for the eyes of only book & music lovers

extracted by ´interviewing´ 

Paste Staff  |  Room 13, November 25, 2020  |  11:00am

Photos by Whitten Sabbatini, Christopher Polk/Getty, Keystone/GettyMUSIC LISTS MUSIC BOOKS

On the Record: by Mike Hilleary: 

Music Journalists On Their Lives, Craft, And Careers

This new book shines a light on esteemed music journalists’ evolution as writers, plus their process and thoughts on the industry at large. It features interviews with Rob Sheffield, Jessica Hopper, Ann Powers, Amanda Petrusich, Hanif Abdurraqib, Lindsay Zoladz, Jayson Greene and more.

Bring That Beat Back:  by Nate Patrin

How Sampling Built Hip-Hop

In Bring That Beat Back: How Sampling Built Hip-Hop, Nate Patrin walks through the history of sampling throughout hip-hop, using Grandmaster Flash, Prince Paul, Dr. Dre and Madlib as key examples

How To Write One Song: by Jeff Tweedy: 

Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy guides music lovers, fans and aspiring songwriters through the musical creative process in his new book. Like his previous 2018 memoir Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back), it appeared on the New York Times Best Seller list.

Le Freak: by Nile Rodgers

Teenage homelessness, drug and alcohol addiction, oral pleasure in the toilets at Studio 54, cancer, plus a fistful of hits with Madonna, Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, David Bowie and his own band, Chic. The legendary hit-maker’s life is more eventful than most and the details are shared with wit and wisdom.

Life by: Keith Richards

 Given the legendarily debauched life of the Rolling Stones guitarist, it’s a wonder that he can remember enough of it to fill a book. Eye-watering in its candour, Life gleefully takes us through music, money, arrests, fallouts, makeups, drugs and “chicks”. It’s gossipy, spry and an absolute hoot from beginning to end.

Note to all parties concerned. The above information was in part corroborated by information gathered under interrogation from informants, a*m*zo* and k*ndl* Bo**s. The details below are therefore classified information

The Last Days of John Lennon: by James Patterson

This book tells an amazing story of John Lennon’s life and career, from his earliest days up to his last seconds. It tells the story of the most profound rock-and-roll genius of all time – and of the consummate Nowhere Man who took him from us.

John Lennon achieved with The Beatles a level of super-stardom that defied classification. Lennon claimed, ´we were the best bloody band there was, and nobody could touch us.´

In the summer of 1980, ten years after the break-up of The Beatles, Lennon signed with a new label and hired a top producer to recruit the best session musicians, ready to record new music for the first time in years. They were awestruck when Lennon dashed off (Just Like) Starting Over.

Lennon was back in peak form, with his best song-writing since Imagine.

Even before Lennon left The Beatles, becoming a solo artist and making a life with Yoko Ono in New York City, Mark David Chapman had become obsessed with murdering his former hero. Chapman was convinced that Lennon had squandered his talent and betrayed fans with messages of hope and peace. In December 1980, Chapman quit his security job in Hawaii, signing out as ‘John Lennon’, and boarded a flight to New York with a handgun and bullets stowed in his luggage. He was never going home again.

Enriched by exclusive interviews with Lennon’s friends and associates, including Paul McCartney, The Last Days Of John Lennonis a true-crime drama about two men who changed history. One whose indelible songs enliven our world to this day, and the other who ended the beautiful music with five pulls of a trigger.

Time Between: by Chris Hillman

My Life as a Byrd, Burrito Brother, and Beyond 

Chris Hillman is arguably the primary architect of what’s come to be known as country rock. After playing the Southern California folk and bluegrass circuit, he joined David Crosby, Roger McGuinn, Gene Clark and Michael Clark as an original member of The Byrds. He went on to partner with Gram Parsons to launch The Flying Burrito Brothers, recording a handful of albums that have become touchstones of rock-influenced country.

Hillman then embarked on a prolific recording career in various configurations: as a member of Stephen Stills’ Manassas; as a member of Souther-Hillman-Furay with J.D. Souther and Richie Furay of Buffalo Springfield; as a solo artist; and in a trio with his fellow former Byrds Roger McGuinn and Gene Clark. In the 1980s, Hillman launched a successful mainstream country career when he formed The Desert Rose Band with Herb Pedersen and John Jorgenson, scoring eight Top 10 country hits. In the midst of his country success he was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. He has since released a number of solo albums with the most recent, Bidin’ My Time, produced by Tom Petty. In Time Between, Hillman takes readers behind the curtain of his quintessentially Southern Californian musical journey.

The Seekers: by John Densmore

Meetings With Remarkable Musicians (and Other Artists) 

The iconic drummer of The Doors investigates his own relationship with creativity and explores the meaning of artistry with other artists and performers in this compelling and spellbinding memoir.

Whether it’s the curiosity that blossoms after we listen to our favourite band’s newest record, or the sheer admiration we feel after watching a knockout performance, many of us have experienced art so pure-so innovative-that we can’t help but wonder afterwards: “How did they do that?” And yet, few of us are in a position to be able to ask those memorable legends where their inspiration comes from and how they translated it into something fresh and new. Fortunately for us, this book is here to offer us a bridge.

In The Seekers, John Densmore-the iconic drummer of The Doors and author of the New York Times bestseller Riders On The Storm digs deep into his own process and draws upon his privileged access to his fellow artists and performers in order to explore the origins of creativity itself. Weaving together anecdotes from the author’s personal notebooks and experiences over the past fifty years, this book takes readers on a rich, thought-provoking journey into the soul of the artist. By understanding creativity’s roots, Densmore ultimately introduces us to the realm of everyday inspirations that imbue our lives with meaning.

Inspired by the classic spiritual memoir Meetings With Remarkable Men, this book is fuelled by Densmore’s abundant collection of transformative experiences-both personal and professional-with everyone from Ravi Shankar to Patti Smith, Jim Morrison to Janis Joplin, Bob Marley to Gustavo Dudamel, Lou Reed to Van Morrison, Jerry Lee Lewis to his own dear, late Doors band-mate Ray Manzarek. Ultimately, the result is not only a look into the hearts and minds of some of the most important artists of the past century but also a way for readers to identify and ignite their own creative spark, and light their own fire.

Dolly Parton, Songteller: by Dolly Parton

My Life in Lyrics 

Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics is a landmark celebration of the remarkable life and career of a country music and pop culture legend.

Accompanied by Dolly Parton in her own inimitable words, readers can explore the songs that have defined her journey. The work is illustrated throughout with previously unpublished images from Dolly Parton’s personal and business archives.

Mining over 60 years of song-writing, Dolly Parton highlights one hundred and fifty of her songs and brings readers behind the lyrics.

The book is packed with never-before-seen photographs and classic memorabilia and the text explores personal stories, candid insights, and myriad memories behind the songs.

Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics reveals the stories and memories that have made Dolly a beloved icon across generations, genders, and social and international boundaries. Containing rare photos and memorabilia from Parton’s archives, this book is a show-stopping must-have for every Dolly Parton fan.

Readers will learn the history behind classic Parton songs like Jolene, 9 To 5, I Will Always Love You, and more.
This cleverly compiled autobiography is the perfect gift for Dolly Parton fans (everyone loves Dolly!) as well as lovers of music history and country.

Add it to the shelf with books like Coat of Many Colours, another her titles and, The Beatles Anthology by The Beatles, and Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen.

Hello, Honey, It’s Me: by Ira Kantor 

The Story of Harry Chapin 

The life of Harry Chapin, charismatic musician and iconic humanitarian, was unexpectedly and tragically taken on July 16, 1981, when he was 38 years old. A ´human dynamo” whose sheer tenacity landed him on the Billboard charts, on Broadway, in the White House, and at the forefront of the world hunger movement, Chapin lived by the mantra of ´When in doubt, do something.´ In following this mentality, Chapin’s 10-year solo career encompassed more than 2,000 concerts, nine studio albums, the creation of global non-profit World Hunger Year (now WhyHunger), and the love and respect of fans, fellow musicians, and key political influencers alike.

Hailed as a consummate storyteller, Chapin is best known for his character-driven tunes –Taxi, Sniper, W•O•L•D, A Better Place to Be, 30,000 Pounds Of Bananas, and Cats In The Cradle included. Yet despite having only four Top 40 hits to his name, Chapin’s songs remain one of a kind – elevating him to the same artistic status as classic singer-songwriters of his era like James Taylor, Jim Croce, Gordon Lightfoot, and John Denver. Now, nearly 40 years after his death, the following 10-chapter oral biography seeks to tell Harry Chapin’s story through the first-hand, on-the-record testimonies of the characters who knew him best – more than 60 family members, friends, business associates, and political and musical contemporaries. This book strives to provide a well-rounded retrospective of a musical shooting star whose life, being, sense of accomplishment, and legacy remain unsurpassed – even to this day.

The biographer, Ira Kantor, is the creator of Ira Kantor’s Vinyl Confessions, a monthly music column for the website VintageRock.com. His music writing has also appeared in such publications as the Boston Herald, Elmore Magazine, New York Daily News, and Village Voice. A graduate of Binghamton University and Boston University, Ira resides just outside Boston with his wife, Jen, son, Freddie, and dog, Chapin.

A Rediscovered Trio:  by Evelin That & Atro Mikkola

Down Memory Lane with the Green Book Cellist and an Apprentice 

Here is the never before told true story about a trio that was lost to time and only recently rediscovered; all because of a movie called Green Book. Juri Taht, who was a member of the Don Shirley Trio for nearly three decades, recalls the trio´s glory days. His memories about the trio´s members and so much more have been written down by his daughter-in-law, who also self-published this work. 

How much does the movie resemble real-life events? In the movie Green Book, the cellist was depicted as a Russian. You will lear from passages in this part of the story why that is offensive to Juri and why elderly Estonians not fond of Russians! 

Finnish jazz musician and bassist Atro ´Wade” Mikkola, who was Donald Shirley´s friend and apprentice, talks about his experiences with the trio´s leader and through musical analysis explains the concept of Donald´s music. Atro sincerely hopes that this book and the examination of his experiences with Donald Shirley will help to increase the understanding and appreciation of this unique Sorcerer´s magical art.

By the way, in no way has the publication of this book been supported by the makers of the movie. Indeed, the writing team say they didn´t know anything about the film being made and the makers of the film were unaware of the publishing of this book.

Bob Marley: by Stephen Davis

Conquering Lion of Reggae 

Davis has created an intimate portrait of the charismatic artist through interviews with those closest to Marley and with Marley himself, including the last one before his tragic death in the Spring of 1981. His spellbinding text takes us on an unforgettable journey through Marley’s life, the Wailers’ recording sessions, concerts and life at 56 Hope Road.

Readers should enjoy what is a sensitive, authoritative and authentic look at the King of a musical movement that swept out of Jamaica and into the rest of the world.

Together Apart: by Nazneen Rahman 

A Lockdown Journal with Songs [Print Replica]

Has 2020 changed you?

Together Apart is a real-time exploration of life in lockdown, told through interwoven stories, journal entries, songs, and quotes. This intimate personal journey, written over two months by London-based singer-songwriter Nazneen Rahman, explores the universal thoughts and ideas the crisis triggered:

What do we need to be happy?

Are our real selves hibernating or have we changed forever?

What is freedom and what will we risk for it?

What do we want from the future—to go back or to never go back?

Together Apart also gives rich insight into the creative process of writing songs and how the process of writing brings comfort and understanding.

To experience Together Apart in full, you will want to listen to the accompanying album which includes the songs and stories set to music. It will induce different emotions to the book. The album is widely available to be streamed and the CD is available at www.nazneenrahman.com

My Rock ‘n’ Roll Friend: by Tracey Thorn

In 1983, backstage at the Lyceum in London, Tracey Thorn and Lindy Morrison first met. Tracey’s music career was just beginning, while Lindy, drummer for The Go-Betweens, was ten years her senior. They became confidantes, comrades and best friends, a relationship cemented by gossip and feminism, books and gigs and rock ‘n’ roll love affairs.

Morrison – a headstrong heroine blazing her way through a male-dominated industry – came to be a kind of mentor to Thorn. They shared the joy and the struggle of being women in a band, trying to outwit and face down a chauvinist music media.

In My Rock ‘n’ Roll Friend Thorn takes stock of thirty-seven years of friendship, teasing out the details of connection and affection between two women who seem to be either complete opposites or mirror images of each other. This important book asks what people see, who does the looking, and ultimately who writes women out of – and back into – history.

The Double Life of Bob Dylan: by Clinton Heylin 

A Restless, Hungry Feeling, 1941-1966 

From the world’s leading authority on Bob Dylan, comes the definitive biography that promises to transform our understanding of the man and musician-thanks to early access to Dylan’s never-before-studied archives

When it was announced, nearly two years ago, that the pre-Nobel Bob Dylan had sold his personal archive to the George Kaiser Foundation in Tulsa, Oklahoma for the astonishing sum of $22 million, the shock was palpable. Initially, one almost wondered if this was the pop culture equivalent of the Hitler diaries. How could there be this much material accumulated and archived from one of the world’s least fastidious documenters of his own work? It simply couldn’t be true.

But what Clinton Heylin, considered to be the leading expert on Dylan’s life and work, found when he traveled to the archives was enough to make him entirely rethink his understanding of music’s greatest living legend. Boxes of small notebooks into which Dylan wrote in his microscopic hand his draft ideas, beginning in 1967 and stretching to the present day, previously undocumented working notebooks for Blood on the Tracks; multiple drafts of his ‘novel’, Tarantula; letters and contracts that show Dylan’s hard-won business acumen and artistic integrity time and time again; and, most exciting of all, so many song drafts for the majority of his key songs that a complete rethink of his working methods – and industry – is now required.

With the discovery of such vast and previously unseen materials, Heylin had no choice but to return to Dylan. This time, by cutting his career in half, The Double Life of Bob Dylan dives deeper, explores further, and more thoroughly captures the enigmatic artist than has ever been done before.

I Wanna Be Yours: by John Cooper Clarke

This is a memoir as wry, funny, moving and vivid as its inimitable subject himself. This book will be a joy for both lifelong fans and for a whole new generation.

John Cooper Clarke is a phenomenon: Poet Laureate of Punk, rock star, fashion icon, TV and radio presenter, social and cultural commentator. At 5 feet 11 inches (32in chest, 27in waist), in trademark dark suit, dark glasses, with dark messed-up hair and a mouth full of gold teeth, he is instantly recognizable. As a writer his voice is equally unmistakable and his own brand of slightly sick humour is never far from the surface.

I Wanna Be Yours covers an extraordinary life, filled with remarkable personalities: from Nico to Chuck Berry, from Bernard Manning to Linton Kwesi Johnson, Elvis Costello to Gregory Corso, Gil Scott Heron, Mark E. Smith and Joe Strummer, and on to more recent fans and collaborators Alex Turner, Plan B and Guy Garvey. Interspersed with stories of his rock and roll and performing career, John also reveals his boggling encyclopaedic take on popular culture over the centuries: from Baudelaire and Edgar Allan Poe to Pop Art, pop music, the movies, fashion, football and show-business – and much, much more, plus a few laughs along the way.

Beeswing: by Richard Thompson 

Losing My Way and Finding My Voice 1967-1975 

Influential songwriter and guitarist Richard Thompson reflects on his early years performing during a period of great cultural tumult.

Richard Thompson is an international music legend. Bonnie Raitt ranks him among the pantheon including Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, and Randy Newman. Time includes one of his songs among their “all-time top 100” list. Rolling Stone considers him one of the top twenty guitarists of all time. Now, in his first memoir, he takes us back to the late 1960s, a period of great change and creativity—both personally and for the world at large.

Thompson packed more than a lifetime of experiences into his late teens and twenties. From the pivotal years of 1967 to 1975, he matured into a major musician and established the genre of British folk rock with the era-defining band Fairport Convention, only to depart for a duo act with his wife Linda at the height of the band’s popularity. His discovery and ultimate embrace of Sufism profoundly reshaped his approach to everything in his life and, of course, the music he wrote thereafter.

In this intimate memoir, titled after my favourite of his songs, Richard Thompson re-creates the spirit of the sixties, where he found, and then lost, and then found his way again, and he takes us inside life on the road in the UK and the US, crossing paths—and occasionally sharing the stage—with the likes of Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, and others.

Like Patti Smith’s Just Kids or Marianne Faithfull’s eponymous tome, Beeswing vividly captures the life of a remarkable artist during a period of creative intensity in a world on the cusp of change.

The Dreamer: by Cliff Richard

An Autobiography 

Early evening on Saturday 13th September, 1958, Cliff Richard and The Drifters appeared on ITV’s pop show Oh Boy!, electrifying living rooms across the nation with their now legendary performance of Move It. Overnight, the 17-year-old Elvis fan with big dreams became a real-life teen idol, and Britain had their first rock ‘n’ roll star. A new chapter had started in the history of music.

Over sixty years later, with a hit in every decade since and over 250 million record sales, Cliff Richard performs live to sell-out audiences with continued success as a recording artist, while era-defining pop stars have come and gone.

Now in his autobiography, Cliff takes us back to 1950s post-War London, where he exploded out of the skiffle scene with his unique new sound. From there he is catapulted into the centre of the British film industry, and goes on to conquer Saturday-night TV.

We go behind the scenes on West End musicals, and around the world with him on tour.

Although never really a song-writer he has a gift of finding excellent songs to record. Miss You Nights is a wonderful example of that, and like so many numbers Cliff recorded, the song seemed to slide by unnoticed by other performers before he released the single.Cliff Richard is one of the biggest-selling artists of all time, and he has achieved that while always following his own path, on his own terms. Here he tells his story in his own words, through the toughest times he has faced, to the biggest dreams that came true.

All Or Nothing: by Simon Spence

The Story of Steve Marriott Authorised by the Marriott family.

 Steve Marriott, lead singer of the Small Faces and Humble Pie, had a voice coveted by Bob Dylan, Robert Plant, Roger Daltrey, and David Bowie, amongst many others. All or Nothing, Simon Spence’s oral history biography, is drawn from over 125 interviews with those who knew Marriott intimately: his wives, children, band-mates, and closest friends, managers, record producers, record label bosses, and his fellow musicians. Included are scores of people who have never told their story before.

Really Saying Something: by Sara & Keren

Our Bananarama Story 

Sara Dallin and Keren Woodward met in the school playground when they were four. They became international stars, first as a trio, then, for almost three decades, as a duo.

After finishing school, Sara studied journalism at the London College Of Fashion, while Keren worked at the BBC. They lived in the YWCA before moving into the semi-derelict former Sex Pistols rehearsal room and immersing themselves in Soho’s thriving club scene. A year later they teamed up with Siobhan Fahey to form Bananarama. A string of worldwide hits followed, including Cruel Summer, I Heard a Rumour and Venus.

In a male-dominated industry, they were determined to succeed on their own terms and inspired a generation with their music, DIY-style and trailblazing attitudes.

Narrated with humour and authenticity, and filled with never before seen photos Really Saying Something takes us from the early days to the world tours, to party games with George Michael, a close friendship with Prodigy’s Keith Flint, hanging out with Andy Warhol in New York and a Guinness World Record for the most worldwide chart entries of any all-female group.

As well as the highs, Sara and Keren speak frankly about the flip side of fame, revealing their personal struggles and the challenges of juggling family life with a demanding professional schedule.

Really Saying Something is the story of two friends who continue to pursue their dreams their way – and have a great time doing it. It’s a celebration of determination and a lifelong friendship, with an unbeatable soundtrack.

Chips Moman: by James L. Dickerson

The Record Producer Whose Genius Changed American Music

Chips Moman’s genius began in the studio, where he instituted technical innovations that forever changed the recording industry, but it expanded from there with an uncanny ability to recognize hit songs when he heard them as rough demos, and then blossomed with an unsurpassed string of hit records. He rescued Elvis Presley’s career with his recordings of Suspicious Minds and In the Ghetto, and he provided Willie Nelson with one of his most memorable signature songs, Always on My Mind. Not bad for a Georgia country boy who dropped out of school in the eighth grade and hitchhiked to Memphis in search of the American Dream.

´I think the Chips Moman story has provided me with the best book I have written since ´Colonel Tom Parker´, which was purchased by Warner Bros. for its Elvis film starring Tom Hanks,´ says author James L. Dickerson.

´I anticipate great interest in a movie based on Moman’s story.´ he adds,. Small wonder. He has been called the ´Steve McQueen of the music business.´´

By any measure—sales, multi-genre capability, number of hit records, technical innovation, artistry, etc.—Lincoln “Chips” Moman was the most important record producer in American history. With several hundred hits to his credit in pop, country, (he produced a John Stewart album as I recall) rhythm & blues, and rock, both from record production and song.writing, Chips Moman is legendary within the music industry. This biography is the story of his life.

Early on, Chips Moman was a co-founder of Memphis’s Stax Records, along with Jim Stewart and Estelle Axton. Moman found the location for the studio, organized the recording system, recruited the early talent and produced the legendary soul music record label’s first two hits of Gee Whiz by Carla Thomas and Last Night, an instrumental by the Mar-Keys.

He produced music icons such as Elvis, of course, and Petula Clark and Dionne Warwick. In rock and pop he is associated with the Gentrys Keep On Dancing, the Box Tops with The Letter, One of the great rock-pop records, Neil Diamond’s Sweet Caroline, Sandy Posey Born a Woman and the atmospheric Single Girl, Paul Revere & The Raiders with Goin’ To Memphis, Dusty Springfield  and her Son Of A Preacher Man, Ringo Starr (an unreleased album which the author listened to and considers among Ringo’s best; the album ended up in a celebrated court case); B.J. Thomas, Hooked On A Feeling, The Eyes of A New York Woman,”and Hey Won’t You Play Another Somebody Done Someone Wrong Song.?

In country music, he originated the super group the Highwaymen (Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, and Kristofferson) and produced two of their three albums; He also produced Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, and in doing so gave a unique version of Townes Van Zandt´s Pancho & Lefty, plus albums with Tammy Wynette, Gary Stewart, Brenda Lee and others.

Moman also recorded a country album, as of now unreleased, with actor Robert Duvall, who got permission from Moman to use him as a model for the character he played in Tender Mercies, a role for which he was awarded an Oscar.

Coal Miner’s Daughter: by Loretta Lynn

New York Times bestselling author and Nashville legend Loretta Lynn tells the story of her rise from deep poverty in Butcher Holler, Kentucky, to the top of the male-dominated country music industry.

Reissued for the 40th Anniversary of the Oscar-winning, Sissy Spacek-starring film of the same name, Coal Miner’s Daughter recounts Loretta Lynn’s astonishing journey to become one of the original queens of country music. Loretta grew up dirt poor in the mountains of Kentucky, she was married at thirteen years old, and became a mother soon after. At the age of twenty-four, her husband, Doo, gave her a guitar as an anniversary present.

Soon, she began penning songs and singing in front of honky-tonk audiences, and, through years of hard work, talent, and true grit, eventually made her way to Nashville´s Grand Ole Opry, eventually securing her place in country music history. Loretta’s prolific and influential song-writing made her the first woman to receive a gold record in country music, and got her named the first female Entertainer of the Year by the Country Music Association. This riveting memoir introduces readers to all the highs and lows on her road to success and the tough, smart, funny, and fascinating woman behind the legend.

Keys to the White House: by Robert Boguslaw 

photo 9 First trained at the University of Miami in the late nineteen seventies, the author quickly found himself playing piano and keyboard with various bands throughout the Miami area, eventually moving to performing on cruise ships. By the mid-eighties, he was travelling with pop stars such as Jose Luis Rodriguez, or El Puma.

But the quest for fame lost its allure for Bob, and he decided to return to college to pursue a master’s degree in piano performance at the University of Kentucky (before receiving higher degrees). Afterward, Bob found himself joining the Marine Corps as a member of the President’s Own; a Marine Band, which provided him an up-close view of many historic US events both at the White House and abroad. Bob played to audiences in Latin America of more than ten-thousand screaming fans he also played at State dinners, treaty-signings and presidential inaugurations. As a world-class pianist he has played all over the world for rock fans, presidents and foreign leaders, as well as students and everyday music lovers. He’s also played for some of the biggest names in music today, stars who represent myriad genres. From Renee Fleming to Kid Rock, Bob’s style is versatile and accomplished.

I’m Your Man: by Sylvie Simmons

The Life of Leonard Cohen

Simmons’s weighty treatise on ´Laughing Len´ traces the poet, novelist and singer from his early life in Montreal to his periods in New York, Hydra and California. There are surprising morsels here, among them Cohen’s flirtation with Scientology and his habit of stuffing tissues in his shoes to make himself taller.

Miles: The Autobiography by Miles Davis

By turns joyful, raw and plain disturbing, the jazz trumpeter’s autobiography is a warts-and-all account of a life in which music is celebrated, fellow musicians often slated and women denigrated and abused. It makes for grim reading in places but Davis is acute on art, race and his battles with drugs.

We recently filled your bookshelf L with recommendations of books set in or written about Lanzarote. We imagine there may be enough recommendations above to go some way towards filling shelf M for music !

Happy reading.

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