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Trevor Tolliver speaks with Tony Peters

Author of the book You Don’t Own Me: The Life and Times of Lesley Gore, Trevor Tolliver, was interviewed on Icon Fetch. Icon Fetch provides listeners with weekly music interviews, album reviews, and lots more. Trevor spoke with host Tony Peters about the book, how he gathered all his information, and his friendship with Lesley Gore. Listen to the entire interview below to learn more!


 >>Listen<<

00146488The year was 1963. Tail fins were in, sock hops were hot, and a fairytale white knight was president.

That summer, 16-year-old singer Lesley Gore released her debut single, “It’s My Party,” propelling her to Number One on the charts. For the next several years, the crowned Princess of Pop dominated the radio with a string of hits including “Judy’s Turn to Cry,” “She’s A Fool,” “Sunshine, Lollipops & Rainbows,” and the rousing anthem for independence, “You Don’t Own Me,” making her the most successful and influential solo female artist of the 1960s. But beneath the bubblegum façade was a girl squirming against social and professional pressures to simply be herself and to forge a future where she could write and perform music beyond the trappings of teenage angst and love triangles.

Assembled over five years of research and interviews, You Don’t Own Me: The Life and Times of Lesley Gore by Trevor Tolliver (September 2015, Backbeat Books, $27.99) is the first and long-overdue biography of Lesley Gore, one of pop music’s pioneering Mothers. Tolliver chronicles Gore’s meteoric rise to fame, her devastating fall from popularity and struggle for relevance in the 1970s, and her reemergence as a powerful songwriter, political activist, and camp icon.

You Don’t Own Me includes behind-the-scenes stories about the making of her hit records, debunks or clarifies popular myths about her career, and places her remarkable life and times within a historical context to reveal how her music was both impacted by, and contributed to, each decade of her astounding fifty-year career.

Confessions of a Serial Songwriter

Confessions of a Serial Songwriter

by Shelly Peiken


From the songwriter behind such hits as “What a Girl Wants” and “Bitch” comes a memoir that offers an insider’s perspective on the music business and the craft of songwriting.


 

Website

Shelly Peiken, well known for writing culturally resonant, female-empowerment anthems such as Christina Aguilera’s No. 1 hit “What a Girl Wants” and Meredith Brooks’s smash hit, “Bitch,” looks back on her career and inside the business of songwriting in her memoir, Confessions of a Serial Songwriter.

A humorous and poignant pop culture memoir about Peiken’s journey, Confessions of a Serial Songwriter takes readers into the rarefied world of the music business. From a young girl falling under the spell of magical songs to a working professional writing hits of her own, Peiken describes how she built a career, from fledgling songwriter, pounding the streets of New York City to Grammy nominations, international hits, and the first Number One song of the millennium.

David Wild, contributing editor for Rolling Stone, calls Confessions of a Serial Songwriter “a great book [that offers] an insightful, honest, often funny, emotional look inside the good, the bad, the ugly, and ultimately the transcendent aspects of trying to lead a creative life inside a competitive career.”

In addition to the fascinating biographical trajectory, Peiken presents invaluable information for the aspiring songwriter, including tips about the creative process and how to adapt to the constantly changing currents. “Now more than ever, people who want to enter this topsy-turvy world of professional songwriting need to know how to handle the inevitable ups and downs that accompany what, for me, has a been an incredibly gratifying journey,” said Peiken.

In Confessions of a Serial Songwriter, Peiken writes about personal growth, how to recognize your muse and navigate the creative process as well as the struggles that arise between motherhood and career success. While she’s not afraid to delve into the divas, celebrity egos and schemers, it is the talented and remarkable people she’s found along the way that predominate the text. And, finally, Confessions of a Serial Songwriter raises the obvious though universal challenge of getting older and staying relevant in a rapidly changing and youth-driven world.

 

$19.99
6.0″ x 9.0″
280 pages
Softcover Original

9781495049255
B/W photographs throughout
Hal Leonard Books, an imprint of Hal Leonard Corporation

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

SHELLY PEINKEN is a Grammy-nominated songwriter. She has been a prolific, behind-the-scenes force in the music business for more than two decades. Her songs have sold in excess of 50 million records. She is beast known for penning culturally resonant anthems, including Christina Aguilera’s “What a Girl Wants, Meredith Brooks’s “Bitch,” and songs recorded by Britney Spears, Celine Dion, Natalie Cole, the Pretenders, Keith Urban, Cher, the Backstreet Boys, and many others. She lives in Los Angeles.

COASS-Final_CVR_152159

47 Years Ago Today…

On August 19th 1971, Led Zeppelin played in Pacific Coliseum, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. This was Led Zeppelin’s 7th US Tour and would be best remembered for what Peter Grant did during the concert. Marc Roberty has covered everything about that tour date and more in his book, Led Zeppelin: Day by Day. Take a peek inside the book and learn what Peter Grant did in the excerpt below!


LedZepDBD_text_final.jpgLED ZEPPELIN
SEVENTH US TOUR


19 AUGUST 1971–17 SEPTEMBER 1971

19 August 1971, Pacific Coliseum, Vancouver, British
Columbia, Canada (8:30 p.m.)

Setlist not known but would probably have consisted of the following: Immigrant Song / Heartbreaker / Since I’ve Been Loving You / Out On The Tiles Intro / Black Dog / Dazed And Confused / Stairway To Heaven / Celebration Day / That’s The Way / What Is And What Should Never Be / Moby Dick / Whole Lotta Love (including Boogie Chillun’, My Baby Left Me, Mess O’ Blues, You Shook Me) / Communication Breakdown / Organ Solo / Thank You

This show is best remembered as the one where Peter Grant smashed up a Canadian official’s noise measuring equipment thinking it was a bootlegger taping the show. The New Musical Express in England reported, “Led Zeppelin cause plenty of action in the
audience as well as on stage! Zeppelin is in the middle of an American tour. Last weekend in Vancouver the band played in a hockey arena which houses over 13,000 people but it wasn’t enough and nearly 3,000 didn’t get in. Inevitably the police clashed with the punters outside. During the show a group of government scientists were checking sound levels but their equipment was mistaken for bootlegging gear. Their equipment was summarily destroyed. The local police are looking for the band’s manager for questioning.”

00125658.jpg21 August 1971, the Forum, Inglewood, Los Angeles, California
(8:30 p.m.)

Setlist: Immigrant Song / Heartbreaker / Since I’ve Been Loving You / Out On The Tiles Intro / Black Dog / Dazed And Confused / Stairway To Heaven / That’s The Way / Going
To California / What Is And What Should Never Be / Whole Lotta Love (including Boogie Chillun’, I’m Moving On, That’s Alright Mama, Dr. Kitch, Mess O’ Blues, Got A Lot O’Livin’ To Do, Honey Bee, Sugar Mama Blues, Gee, Baby Ain’t I Good To You, Kind Hearted Woman Blues) / Weekend / Rock And Roll / Communication Breakdown / Organ Solo / Thank You

Once again, the band play amazingly for the Los Angeles crowd, which is rewarded with a lengthy version of “Whole Lotta Love” with many covers in the medley. The night ends with a beautiful “Thank You,” which sums up the band’s feeling toward the audience.

22 August 1971, the Forum, Inglewood, Los Angeles, California
(8:30 p.m.)

Setlist: Walk Don’t Run / Immigrant Song / Heartbreaker / Since I’ve Been Loving You / Out On The Tiles Intro / Black Dog / Dazed And Confused / Stairway To Heaven / Celebration
Day / That’s The Way / What Is And What Should Never Be / Moby Dick / Whole Lotta Love (including Boogie Chillun’, My Baby Left Me, Mess O’ Blues, You Shook Me) / Communication Breakdown / Organ Solo / Thank You

Just when you think the previous night’s performance could not be bettered, Led Zeppelin put in another killer performance, opening up with a surprise cover of the Venture’s “Walk Don’t Run” hit single before pulverizing the crowd with “Immigrant Song.” Plant is not taking any chances with his voice, though, as he went all out at the previous show and has to warn the audience that “tonight my voice is really fucked, so I don’t think we’re gonna do much harmonizing. But we’re gonna try—so, vibe on!” It was true that at some points his voice sounded a little worn, particularly on “Stairway To Heaven,” but to be honest this was in no way going to ruin what was otherwise an impeccable and dynamic concert.

50th anniversary of one of the Beatles last tour show!

Today marks the day that the Beatles played their last show in Toronto Canada! It has been 50 years since, but that performance will never be forgotten. Chuck Gunderson, author of Some Fun Tonight! The Backstage Story of How the Beatles Rocked America: The Historic Tours 1964-1966, talks all about the Toronto performance in his book take a sneak peak of it in the excerpt below!


SFT-Vol2_paperback_textOne year to the day after the Beatles last played Toronto, Canada, they returned to the city for two shows at the famed Maple Leaf Gardens—the only venue that hosted them for all three North American tours. The concerts would essentially be a repeat of their 1964 and 1965 shows, except for a change in their set list and stage clothes. It would also be the last time the group would rock the Gardens.

Harold Ballard once again succeeded in his negotiations with Beatles manager Brian Epstein and General Artists Corporation (GAC) to secure the concerts. Epstein was loyal to the promoters who’d gambled on the large guarantees required to present his “boys” during the first tour in 1964.

The Gardens owner had had an enormous influence on the venue’s financial standing, tripling profits by hosting conventions and entertainment acts. He was also innovative. Ballard was one of the first stadium executives to bring advertising inside the arena and was always seeking ways to expand the seating capacity. In one bold—and controversial—move to fit in more seats, he instructed workers to remove a large portrait of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. When confronted about his decision, he defended himself, saying, “She doesn’t pay me; I pay her. Besides, what the hell position can a queen play?” When the Beatles played the Gardens the previous year, Ballard had smelled an opportunity for profit, cranked up the heat, and shut off the water fountains, forcing the crowd to buy oversized soft drinks.

He was a master at promotion and knew from prior years that the Beatles would sell tickets. But this time, when seats were still available in the days leading up to the two concerts (and even on the day of the shows), Ballard had to scramble, printing up posters and putting them around Toronto in an effort to fill the venue. “See John, Paul, George & Ringo,” the posters touted. “Beatle tickets on sale here!” Ballard found himself fighting an uphill battle, as several Canadian radio stations banned the playing of Beatles records after John’s statement about the group being “more popular than Jesus” became public.

A few weeks before the concert, GAC’s Bob Bonis sent a letter to Maple Leaf Gardens executive Henry Bolton containing a detailed list of instructions that were to be strictly followed. Although a similar letter was sent to the promoters and venue management in every tour city, some specific requests were made by Bonis for Toronto. “If you have press coverage for the Beatles at the airport,” he wrote, “please keep it as much a secret as possible.” He added that, upon landing, a suitable place needed to be secured in order to “to avoid the crowds.” Limousines, a bus, and two trucks had to be present to meet the plane—and the trucks needed to hold all the equipment and be “locked at all times.” Finally, it was mandated that there were to be “absolutely no interviews at all at the airport … that means no tapes, etc.”


Read more by purchasing the book here.

Pearl Jam FAQ

Pearl Jam FAQ

All That’s Left to Know About Seattle’s Most Enduring Band

by Thomas Edward Harkins and Bernard M. Corbett

Website

With record sales of nearly 32 million in the United States and an estimated 60 million worldwide and with no end in sight, Pearl Jam can stake its claim to being the most successful, enduring, and influential band to emerge from the Seattle (or pretty much anywhere else) in the 1990s.

 In Pearl Jam FAQ: All That’s Left to Know About Seattle’s Most Enduring Band (May 2016, Backbeat Books, $19.99), authors Thomas Edward Harkins and Bernard M. Corbett explore the entire arc of the band’s career, from their pre-Pearl Jam days to the present. Each of 30 chapters explores a different aspect of Pearl Jam’s fascinating history.

Pearl Jam FAQ looks the band members’ successes, failures, and tragedies prior to joining forces, as well as their early days as Mookie Blaylock and the unusual manner in which they came up with the name finally stuck. Then, Harkins and Corbett go inside the studio and analyze each of their albums in turn and hit the road with them as they set out to conquer Seattle, the West Coast of the United States, and then the entire world.

Beyond the music, Pearl Jam FAQ takes a long look at the way Pearl Jam adapted to an ever-changing media landscape where MTV, not radio, is the major power broker. The book also addresses their battles with Ticketmaster and explores about the roots of their socio-political activism.

With a view of the band from every angle and in every context – on CD, on vinyl, on the radio, on television, on film, in videos, onstage, backstage, on the road, in the air, and at home – through the eyes of Pearl Jam enthusiasts, Pearl Jam FAQ presents a must-have text for band devotees to devour.

$19.99
6.0″ x 9.0″
400 pages
9781617136122
BackBeat Books, an imprint of Hal Leonard Corporation

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

THOMAS EDWARD HARKINS is a media ecologist and former adjunct professor who spent ten years teaching undergraduates at NYU’s Steinhardt Department of Media, Culture, and Communication, and a year at Adelphi University. The two-(nearly three!)-time New York University alumnus now works as a freelance writer and editor in his native Brooklyn. Rock ’n’ roll is his abiding passion.

BERNARD M. CORBETT is the radio voice of Harvard University football and Boston University hockey. The Massachusetts native and Boston University alumnus is the author of nearly 20 books, most of them dealing with sports and rock ’n’ roll. The music historian has worked with the late, legendary NYC DJ Pete Fornatale on books about Woodstock and the Rolling Stones. He lives in Boston.

00139507

Tom Harkins on WCWP Radio

Tom Harkins, one of the authors of Pearl Jam FAQ, was recently interviewed by Bob Guthenberg host of The Rock Show! The Rock Show is a radio show on WCWP Radio that airs weekdays at 7pm that takes you on an eclectic journey through classic rock, pop, folk, psychedelic, and more! Listen to the interview below to hear what Tom had to say about Pearl Jam and Pearl Jam FAQ.

>>Listen<<

00139507With record sales of nearly 32 million in the United States and an estimated 60 million worldwide and with no end in sight, Pearl Jam can stake its claim to being the most successful, enduring, and influential band to emerge from the Seattle (or pretty much anywhere else) in the 1990s.

In Pearl Jam FAQ: All That’s Left to Know About Seattle’s Most Enduring Band (May 2016, Backbeat Books, $19.99), authors Thomas Edward Harkins and Bernard M. Corbett explore the entire arc of the band’s career, from their pre-Pearl Jam days to the present. Each of 30 chapters explores a different aspect of Pearl Jam’s fascinating history.

Pearl Jam FAQ looks the band members’ successes, failures, and tragedies prior to joining forces, as well as their early days as Mookie Blaylock and the unusual manner in which they came up with the name finally stuck. Then, Harkins and Corbett go inside the studio and analyze each of their albums in turn and hit the road with them as they set out to conquer Seattle, the West Coast of the United States, and then the entire world.

Beyond the music, Pearl Jam FAQ takes a long look at the way Pearl Jam adapted to an ever-changing media landscape where MTV, not radio, is the major power broker. The book also addresses their battles with Ticketmaster and explores about the roots of their socio-political activism.

With a view of the band from every angle and in every context – on CD, on vinyl, on the radio, on television, on film, in videos, onstage, backstage, on the road, in the air, and at home – through the eyes of Pearl Jam enthusiasts, Pearl Jam FAQ presents a must-have text for band devotees to devour.

5 Reasons To Love Pearl Jam

Authors of the book Pearl Jam FAQ, Thomas Edward Harkins and Bernard Corbett, spoke to the Lynn Saxberg of the Ottawa Citizen and gave 5 reasons why people still love Pearl Jam. Read below to see what they had to say!


001395071 Never the same show twice

Pearl Jam is renowned for marathon concerts that can last for almost three hours. Plus, the setlist is different every night, and you never know when they’re going to dig into an entire album, pull out a sweet cover by Neil Young or the Who, or welcome a surprise guest. Over the past couple of weeks, bombshells have included a song-by-song reading of Ten, a cover of the Doobie Brothers’ Takin It To The Streets and appearances by Sting and Cheap Trick. Without a new album to promote (the last outing was 2013’s Lightning Bolt), anything can happen.

2 It’s good to be a fan

The band members have always been grateful for their loyal fans, especially the diehards who travel to more than one show on each tour. Thanks to a lottery system, most of the best seats in each venue are made available to the fan club, a system that not only cuts out the scalpers, but also ensures that true fans are in the front rows, and keeps the ticket prices at a reasonable level. The fans are also often first to hear new music.

3 The Eddie factor

Few bands rock as hard and with as much soul as Pearl Jam. Guitarists Mike McCready and Stone Gossard, along with the rhythm section of Jeff Ament and Matt Cameron construct a musical base like no other, but it’s frontman Eddie Vedder who gives the band its edge with his distinctive, spine-tingling howl, often cathartic lyrics and unpredictable stage antics. At 51, he’s a lot more comfortable in the spotlight than he used to be, and the passion is evident in his performance, noted Corbett, who’s already seen a handful of shows on the current tour, bringing his lifetime total up to around 80 Pearl Jam concerts.


Read the full article by clicking here!

Bob Carlin on The Fretboard Journal

Bob Carlin, author of Banjo: An Illustrated History, spoke with Jason Verlinde of The Fretboard Jorunal! The Fretboard Journal magazine hosts a weekly podcast that features interviews with legendary guitarists, luthiers, and much more. On the podcast they spoke about Bob’s book, the history of the banjo, and how writing this book came to be. Listen to the podcast below to learn more!

>>Listen<<

00142046The banjo is emblematic of American country music, and it is at the core of other important musical movements, including jazz and ragtime. The instrument has been adopted by many cultures and has been ingrained into many musical traditions, from Mento music in the Caribbean and dance music in Ireland. Virtuosos such as Béla Fleck have played Bach, African music, and Christmas tunes on the five-string banjo, and the instrument has had a resurgence in pop music with such acts a Mumford and Sons and the Avett Brothers.

In Banjo: An Illustrated History (June 2016, Backbeat Books, $35), author, broadcaster, and acclaimed banjoist Bob Carlin offers the first comprehensive, illustrated history of the banjo in its many forms. He traces the story of the instrument from its roots in West Africa to its birth in the Americas, through its coming of age in the Industrial Revolution and beyond.

Banjo: An Illustrated History profiles the most important players and spotlights key luthiers and manufacturers and features 100 “milestone instruments” with in-depth coverage, including model details and beautiful photos. It offers historical context surrounding the banjo through the ages, from its place in Victorian parlors and speakeasies through its role in the folk boom of the 1950s and 1960s to its place in the hands of songwriter John Hartford and comedian Steve Martin.

Folk, jazz, bluegrass, country, and rock – the banjo has played an important part in all of these genres. Lavishly illustrated, and thoughtfully written Banjo: An Illustrated History is a must-have for lovers of fretted instruments, aficionados of roots music, and music history buffs.

 

Tom Harkins on Talk Radio Europe

Tom Harkins, one of the authors of Pearl Jam FAQ, was on Talk Radio Europe to speak about the book. He talks about Pearl Jam’s success and how the book came together with co-author, Bernard Corbett. Listen to the entire interview by clicking on the link below!

>>Listen<<

00139507With record sales of nearly 32 million in the United States and an estimated 60 million worldwide and with no end in sight, Pearl Jam can stake its claim to being the most successful, enduring, and influential band to emerge from the Seattle (or pretty much anywhere else) in the 1990s.

 

In Pearl Jam FAQ: All That’s Left to Know About Seattle’s Most Enduring Band (May 2016, Backbeat Books, $19.99), authors Thomas Edward Harkins and Bernard M. Corbett explore the entire arc of the band’s career, from their pre-Pearl Jam days to the present. Each of 30 chapters explores a different aspect of Pearl Jam’s fascinating history.

 

Pearl Jam FAQ looks the band members’ successes, failures, and tragedies prior to joining forces, as well as their early days as Mookie Blaylock and the unusual manner in which they came up with the name finally stuck. Then, Harkins and Corbett go inside the studio and analyze each of their albums in turn and hit the road with them as they set out to conquer Seattle, the West Coast of the United States, and then the entire world.

Beyond the music, Pearl Jam FAQ takes a long look at the way Pearl Jam adapted to an ever-changing media landscape where MTV, not radio, is the major power broker. The book also addresses their battles with Ticketmaster and explores about the roots of their socio-political activism.

 

With a view of the band from every angle and in every context – on CD, on vinyl, on the radio, on television, on film, in videos, onstage, backstage, on the road, in the air, and at home – through the eyes of Pearl Jam enthusiasts, Pearl Jam FAQ presents a must-have text for band devotees to devour.

Coming in 2019: 25 Years of Grace

25YearsofGraceCover.jpg

Jeff Buckley made only one album, but the one he made has proved to be seminal.

In 2019, Backbeat Books will publish 25 Years of Grace: An Anniversary Tribute to Jeff Buckley’s Classic Album, a lavishly illustrated volume by photographer Merri Cyr with Buckley biographer Jeff Apter, recalling the making of Grace and looking at the influence it has had on artists and their music in the ensuing quarter-century.

Cyr, widely recognized as Buckley’s official photographer and author of A Wished-For Song: A Portrait of Jeff Buckley, published by Backbeat Books, documented his career from his days at the East Village coffee shop Sin-é to his iconic Grace cover shoot to his rigorous world tour promoting his unprecedented debut. Apter is the author of A Pure Drop: The Life of Jeff Buckley, also from Backbeat Books.

“I photographed Jeff over the course of almost four years,” Cyr said. “Some people have asked me why it is that I photographed him so much. Mostly, it was fascinating to watch him grow musically at lightning speed, even from one day to the next. I had the opportunity to witness and document his evolution—as a person and an artist.”

25 Years of Grace will feature new interviews with Buckley insiders – including producer Andy Wallace, band mates Matt Johnson and Mick Grøndahl, string arranger Karl Berger, A&R man Steve Berkowitz, and veteran music publicist Howard Wuelfing – who reveal details of Buckley’s signing to a major label, the role of the band in creating arrangements, finding the right creative direction for the multifaceted songsmith, the songwriting process and final song selections, key meetings and collaborations, recording techniques, memorable moments in the studio, and more.

The book also will include reflections about Buckley and Grace from an array of artists, including Lenny Kaye, Butch Walker, Pete Yorn, and Holly Miranda.

“I’ve been fortunate to have been involved in various Jeff Buckley-related projects over the years,” said Apter. “But this has been the first time where not only have all the key players been willing and able to contribute, but in a manner that was, without an exception, frank, open and forthcoming. Their revelations are deeply felt, sometimes highly emotional and always very revealing. Collectively they’ve painted a portrait of Jeff and the Grace era that I think will become the definitive statement on the man and the time.”

 Featuring many never-before-seen photographs, the recollections of those who worked alongside Buckley, and tributes by some of the many influenced by him, 25 Years of Grace will take a fresh look at the making and legacy of this incomparable album.

25 Years of Grace is a celebration of Jeff Buckley’s contribution to music,” explained Backbeat Books Associate Editor Bernadette Malavarca, who acquired the title. “The book brings into sharp focus the timelessness of Grace and gives it its due as a true classic. The interviews peel back the curtain on the events that led to the album and the creative process involved, its reception in the context of its time, and its lasting power. The artist reflections show the widespread influence of Buckley and Grace on countless musicians.

“We are fairly deep into the text development, photo editing, and design plans,” Malavarca added. “It’s been an inspiring experience thus far, and with the book, we hope to invoke that same inspiration in readers and Buckley fans who revere his music as we do.”

Additional components of the project will be announced in the coming months. 25 Years of Grace will be published in Fall 2019.

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