Music of 1968, Rock and Roll’s Greatest Year from Time Life

It’s a hefty claim that the music of 1968 was rock and roll’s greatest year. Time Life’s editors conducted an admirable job substantiating that belief.

The magazine has compelling photographs from premier rock photographers Jim Marshall, Barry Feinstein, Michael Ochs, Elliot Landy, Herb Greene, and Baron Wolman.

The 10 albums that defined that year are all a part of my vinyl collection and receive regular listening.

  1. Bookends – Simon & Garfunkel
  2. Odessey and Oracle – The Zombies
  3. Music From Big Pink – The Band
  4. Waiting For The Sun – The Doors
  5. Truth – Jeff Beck
  6. Wheels Of Fire – Cream
  7. Electric Ladyland – The Jimi Hendrix Experience
  8. Astral Weeks-Van Morrison
  9. The Beatles – The Beatles
  10. Beggars Banquet – The Rolling Stones
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The Public Library and Richard Brautigan

Many years ago I would visit on a regular basis, the South Norwalk Public Library.  While looking through the stacks of books I stumbled upon a man who was sitting at a table. He had a huge stack of books in front of him and was avidly reading a title. He had a brown bag lunch with a sandwich half eaten on top of the folded down brown bag. Odd yet poignant what we remember from our childhood.

I asked the librarian who he was and she said to me, “He comes here every day, rain or shine. Stays until closing time. His mission is to read every book in the library before he dies.” I smiled at her, checked out my books and left wondering about this eccentric person I happened upon. I would see him on subsequent visits to the library and say hello as I passed by his regular table.

I think about him from time to time when I see a new book that I want to own and read. I am curious how well read he became. I’ve built a real music library in my home office. I haven’t gotten around to reading many of the music books I have purchased yet. Life keeps us busy. Like many people I read more Web pages than printed pages anymore. The guilt of incomplete reading plagues the music of our heart. I have to remedy this….

If I had my druther I’d retire early so that I could listen to all the music I own and wish to hear from the cloud. That would serve as my backdrop for reading the music books that call me. Note to self: Get a reading lamp and easy chair for the home office…

One author I discovered through Rolling Stone Magazine in the early 70’s was Richard Brautigan. He served as the counterculture author. I was drawn to his works as a twenty year old, community college student. (Little did I realize I would become a part-time lecturer at a community college…)

I’ve looked about the house for my copies of his classic works that I must read again. Alas they are nowhere to be found. I will have to repurchase some of his books to fill that void.

This title comes to mind.

The_Abortion
“The Abortion” by Source. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:The_Abortion.jpg#/media/File:The_Abortion.jpg

What triggered these sentiments is the discovery of a new photography book by Erik Weber, Seeing Richard: Rare and Previously Unpublished Images of Richard Brautigan.  

“Erik Weber’s photographs are starkly beautiful works in their own right — but the really great thing for me is that they also amplify the reputation of an outstanding American writer who has been neglected for too long…” from Mr. Cocker’s foreword.

Next to music books, I love to collect photography books. I have another book for my never-ending list. Perhaps I should ask my local librarian to order it for me…;)

State of the Blues – Jeff Dunas

I picked up a copy of a new magazine to me, American Photo (March/April 2015) yesterday. The issue focuses on music photographers of then and now.

I just can’t get enough of music photography books. State of the Blues by photographer Jeff Dunas is an incredible portrait study of the artists who define the blues.

A hardcover book and paperback of the same title (1998) published by Aperture Foundation, includes photographs by Jeff Dunas, interviews with leading blues performers, a preface by John Lee Hooker, and an introduction by William Ferris.

Photograph Copyright Jeff Dunas

 

Love This Book Trailer

The time is getting closer to when a highly anticipated photography book I want to own becomes available, October 14th to be precise 😉

The Haight: Love, Rock, and Revolution book trailer appeared this morning in my Facebook stream. I was immediately hooked. What I found more compelling than the photographs from Jim Marshall’s Leica was the music underneath, “Who Do You Love (Part 1)” by Quicksilver Messenger Service fits so perfectly. I have been in a Quicksilver/San Francisco magical mood ever since. 🙂

Happy Trails (album)
Happy Trails (album) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I hope that there is a book signing event with the publisher in New York City next month, fingers crossed. Happy Trails to you until we meet again!

Bob Minkin’s Live Dead Photography Book

I discovered an invaluable rock photography publication for my music book collection. Bob Minkin, music photographer/historian has curated and published with Insight Editions an authoritative photography book, LIVE DEAD.

LIVE DEAD is a stunning 224 page hardcover coffee table book spanning almost 40 years of epic Grateful Dead photos and stories by Bob Minkin. The book will ship October 2014, preorders being accepted now.

Jerry Garcia’s Rosebud Guitar

I was pushing the grocery cart down the magazine aisle at Stop & Shop when a music magazine cover rang out to me.

Photograph by Rayon Richards

I didn’t hesitate to reach for the magazine when I saw the cover of Guitar AficionadoThe Deadhead in me gingerly placed the magazine in my shopping cart. I said to myself as I headed to the checkout, “I have my idea for a music blog post this weekend.” 🙂

Jerry Garcia‘s Rosebud guitar is pictured inside the magazine. An American beauty of a guitar that Don Irwin, guitar luthier custom-built for him. Jerry Garcia considered Rosebud Don Irwin’s masterpiece. One look will tell you why.

(The photos below and above are from Guitar Aficionado, Copyright 2014. If you love guitars I urge you to pick up a copy of the May/June 2014 issue or any of their other fantastic back issues here. They do guitars total justice)

EPSON MFP image
Photograph by Jay Blakesberg
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Linda McCartney Retrospective – Vienna, Austria

Linda McCartney, London © 1968 Paul McCartney / Photographer: Eric Clapton

The music of our heart loves the photographic beauty captured through the lens of Linda McCartney.There is a new retrospective of her work featuring 190 of her iconic photographs. The Linda McCartney show is on view at the Kunst Haus Wien Museum in Vienna, Austria until October 6, 2013.

The curatorial work has been done by members of the McCartney family and Andreas Hirsch, curator of Kunst Haus Wien, in collaboration with Claudia Schmid of Linda Enterprises Ltd.

Paul McCartney, his wife Nancy and his brother Michael attended opening night. You can get more insight about that evening here.

Copyright 2013 PaulMcCartney.com
Copyright 2013 PaulMcCartney.com

Legends of the Canyon – Directors Cut

Blues from Laurel Canyon
Blues from Laurel Canyon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Henry Diltz is a photographer who has captured through his lenses a unique music history of images. As a resident of Laurel Canyon, California you could say he was in the right place at the right time. Laurel Canyon has significant historic importance to the evolution of folk-rock and songwriter music.

He photographed the most enduring images of the 60s folk-rock stars who lived in LA’s Laurel Canyon. Now Henry Diltz has directed a documentary about the period. Legends of the Canyon, The Directors Cut on DVD will be available on June 11, 2013.

Legends of the Canyon delivers the story of how rock music spawned in the garden of the Hollywood Hills, Laurel Canyon. Many of rock music’s legendary artists of the late 1960′ s brought to life the anthems of a generation in the commune-like setting of these hills. Crosby, Stills and Nash, The Mamas and the Papas, Joni Mitchell, America, Buffalo Springfield and many others feature.

Disc 1 is the documentary film. Disc 2 will be packed with extra bonus features including previously unreleased archive footage:
Henry Diltz’s 8mm silent footage of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Joni Mitchell at Big Bear, CSNY at Balboa Stadium, Woodstock (exclusive footage), silent footage of Stephen Stills in the UK, Byrds at the Troubadour LA.
Exclusive Photo Library including Buffalo Springfield, CSNY, The Byrds, Hendrix, Jim Morrison, The Mamas and Papas, Woodstock and more…Extended interviews with Crosby, Stills and Nash, Ron Stone, Van Dyke Parks and Gerry Beckley
Bootleg footage from Oklahoma “Stills Tour” All releases will also feature a 20 Page Booklet

Photography: Henry Diltz

Canyon of Dreams: The Magic and the Music of Laurel Canyon

Harvey Kubernik (Author), Scott Calamar (Editor), Diltz Henry (Photographer), Lou Adler (Afterword), Ray Manzarek(Foreword)

An excellent book I own and recommend highly is Canyon of Dreams: The Magic and the Music of Laurel Canyon. It is a well researched coffee table sized book that is the perfect companion piece to Legends of the Canyon documentary.

Special Collectors Edition, Rolling Stone – Grateful Dead, The Ultimate Guide

Rolling Stone Magazine, San Francisco and The Grateful Dead. A match made in heaven collaborated on earth.

There is nothing like a Grateful Dead show. The music, the feeling that you experience at their concerts is the most original cosmic force existent.

This magazine does an incredible job in 100 pages of capturing and documenting the 48 years of America’s greatest band. It’s a tremendous value at $11.99 to have a well curated, cross-functional collection of excerpted articles from the original pages of Rolling Stone Magazine.

I urge you to buy a copy of this special collectors edition for your very own. The photographs by Jay Blakesberg, Herb Greene, Baron Wolman, Jim Marshall and others beautifully articulate the halcyon era of Rock’s Longest Strangest Trip.

 

Music Journalism A-Z – Gail O’Hara

Gail O’Hara is the letter O music journalist in this month’s Music Journalism A-Z series. She provides an introspective glimpse that has added expansive quality to my music listening and viewing habits.

Gail O’Hara is an US editor, writer, photographer, recording label owner, and filmmaker.

Gail O’Hara co-founded Chickfactor Magazine in 1992 with indie-pop singer Pam Berry. Today Chickfactor is a Web Blog.

Time Out New YorkO’Hara was the Music Editor of Time Out New York where she hired Stephin MerrittLD BeghtolClaudia GonsonBob BannisterFranklin Bruno and other musicians to write along with the regular critics. She has also worked at SPIN magazine, theWashington City PaperELLEgirl magazine, Entertainment WeeklyMonocleCNN TravellerHappyModern PaintersInterviewCMJ, and had a regular pop music column in the Times of London.

She is a gifted and multifaceted creative. Gail is an advocate for the indie music and arts scene. I have benefited vastly in my relative short exposure to her published multimedia expression.

“These essays make the reader want to explore the music of these artists if they have not been fans before. That is what good music writing should do—it should pull the reader into the music.” – New York Journal of Books

My first related discovery is the music that Gail O’Hara is focused on sharing,  Stephen Merritt and the Magnetic Fields. It didn’t take me but two listens to know I had a new rich vein of music to mine.

From the first few tracks right through to the film Gail O’Hara made, Strange Powers  Stephen Merritt and The Magnetic Fields I became hooked immediately.