David Menconi's Step It Up is an absorbing love letter to the artists, scenes, and sounds of North Carolina's contributions to American popular music.
A classically trained jazz pianist who spent five years with the Miles Davis Quintet, Herbie Hancock is also a practising Buddhist whose ideas about transcending the body are realized in his funky cyborg "Rockit" video.
This recent Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers biography sticks to the objective facts so closely, and the telling is so firmly chronological, that the author tends to miss the forest for the trees.
In this excerpt of Claudrena N. Harold's new book, When Sunday Comes, gospel legend James Cleveland joins the amazing Aretha Franklin to raise the rafters in spirited song.
Ikette Claudia Lennear, rumored to be the inspiration for Mick Jagger's "Brown Sugar", often felt disconnect between her identity as an African American woman and her engagement with rock. Enjoy this excerpt of cultural anthropologist Maureen Mahon's Black Diamond Queens, courtesy of Duke University Press.
Johnny Nash, part rock era crooner, part Motown, and part reggae, was too polite for the more militant wing of the Civil Rights movement, but he also suffered at the hands of a racist music industry that wouldn't market him as a Black heartthrob. Through it all he was himself, as he continuously refused to "remember his place".
As punks were looking for some potential pathways out of the cul-de-sacs of their limited soundscapes, they saw in funk a way to expand the punk palette without sacrificing either their ethos or idea(l)s.
John Lennon helped transform the art and image of the pop star. His very public political activism and socially and politically aware lyrics have earned him a prominent place in the creative and political history of rock.
Ruth Pointer reflects on her multi-faceted career with the Pointer Sisters, honors the memory of her sister Bonnie, and shares the joy found in her music -- and fashion.