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inspirational reading

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(@sapho)
Estimable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 133
Topic starter  

What do the eminent GN members read (when you find the time outside of playing guitar) pertaining to the subject of music. I've just finished "The Lives of John Lennon" by Albert Goldman and 'Guerrilla Minstrels - John Lennon, Joe Hill, Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan" by Wayne Hampton.
Although busy musicians don't have much time to read but having a bad case of writers' block recently and in need of inspiration I desperately needed input to help me find 'the muse' again. I have several texts on learning guitar, jazz, etc sitting on my shelf but there are times when narrative fulfills that need to connect with the musicians of the past and to know what they went through. I wouldn't have known about Lennon, Dylan, or Guthrie's background simply by word of mouth. A warning though - the Goldman book can be a bit demoralizing with all that talk about big money, lawyers and contracts. Afterall Lennon was 'a millionaire superstar imagining himself to be a working class hero' and that's what did him in. I liked how it described the 'compositional techniques' that Lennon used in songwriting. What narrative stimulants are other GN members reading?

Portamento - The ability to move from a wrong note to the right one without anyone noticing the original mistake.
Harmonics - The buzzing sound that string instruments make.
Impromptu - A carefully worked out composition.


   
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(@teleplayer324)
Noble Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 1506
 

Recently I've read "Can't be Satisfied" Muddy Waters Bio, Satisfaction a Keith RIchards bio

Immature? Of course I'm immature Einstein, I'm 50 and in a Rock and ROll band.

New Band site http://www.myspace.com/guidedbymonkeys


   
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(@chris-c)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 3454
 

Got an interesting book about the history of the Fender guitar from the local library recently.

A lot of interesting stuff about how it all started and heaps of interviews with well known owners.

Being a beginner though, it's mostly working my way through an ever increasing stack of instruction books. I love buying new ones, as I can always already play the first few pages and then feel good about it!!! Revision and positive re-inforcement, all in one. I do go all the way through them eventually though! :D


   
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(@jester)
Trusted Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 52
 

Colin Harper's Dazzling Stranger: Bert Jansch and the British Folk and Blues Revival. It's filled with an insane level of detail of the British folk/blues scene of the 1950s and 1960s, and is great on every aspect of Jansch.

My inspirational bit from an early part: When Jansch would visit friends, he'd just sit there playing the guitar, and doing nothing else. When food was ready, it wasn't enough for them to give him a plate--they had to physically remove the guitar from his hands in order to get him to eat. Well, that's why he's a god.


   
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(@yoyo286)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 1681
 

I get inspiration from the weirdest places and books... Not just any single thing...

Right now I'm reading "Lennon" by Ray Coleman which is great (PS, I've heard that Goldman exaggerated Lennon's problems in his book, for attention..,) And I've just finished an excellent bio on the Allman Brothers called "Midnight Rider: The story of the Allman Brothers Band" which was really great, although I wished he emphazied more on the early days of the ABB (With Duane).... :)

Stairway to Freebird!


   
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(@ricochet)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 7833
 

I recently took a break from reading old tube books to read Elijah Wald's Escaping the Delta, Brother Ray, and Cash.
Now I'm reading The Life and Death of Adolph Hitler.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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(@sapho)
Estimable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 133
Topic starter  

Veeeeeryyyy impressive reading list. I suspected folks were reading more than they let on. Yoyo - I agree. The Goldman book 'exaggerates Lennon's problems' and is it eeeeveeeeeer depressing but for getting to know Liverpool and the details surrounding the making of each of the Beatles' albums it suffices.

Portamento - The ability to move from a wrong note to the right one without anyone noticing the original mistake.
Harmonics - The buzzing sound that string instruments make.
Impromptu - A carefully worked out composition.


   
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(@alangreen)
Member
Joined: 22 years ago
Posts: 5342
 

I don't read much about guitars except for Total Guitar magazine. Otherwise, I'm struggling to get through Murray Walker's autobiography (he was the voice of motor racing, motor cross, powerboat racing, and anything that required an engine to race, on TV and radio for about 50 years), and I'm supposed to be reading up on Volatility Swaps for a presentation I'm supposed to be doing at work next Tuesday.

Best,

A :-)

"Be good at what you can do" - Fingerbanger"
I have always felt that it is better to do what is beautiful than what is 'right'" - Eliot Fisk
Wedding music and guitar lessons in Essex. Listen at: http://www.rollmopmusic.co.uk


   
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(@sapho)
Estimable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 133
Topic starter  

Just picked up the following books:
(99)Anthony Elliott's 'The Mourning of John Lennon'
(02)Jonathan Lethem (ed) 'Da Capo Best Music Writing 2002 - The Year's finest writing on rock, pop, jazz, country and more'
and
(2000)Michael Arnaud/Robert Hicks' 'Nashville - The Pilgrims of Guitar Town'
If anyone's read these books I'd be interested in hearing what your thoughts are. Did you think it was useful reading or not?

Portamento - The ability to move from a wrong note to the right one without anyone noticing the original mistake.
Harmonics - The buzzing sound that string instruments make.
Impromptu - A carefully worked out composition.


   
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(@ricochet)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 7833
 

Here's a very interesting music-related book:

Temperament:
The Idea That Solved Music's Greatest Riddle

by Stuart Isacoff.

Who'd've thought that equal temperament took so much time, struggle, and even bloodshed to come up with?

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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