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7 Fantastic Books About Music

Develop that musician within you.

Without music, life would be a mistake.

– Friedrich Nietzsche.

Now that is a quote that you know holds truth in its message. Music is all around us, even when it isn’t. Sometimes you are so happy that you can almost hear a tune playing just for you as you walk down the street to go about your day. Other times not so much, that’s when it’s up to you to put the music on yourself.

When developing the soundtrack of your life, it is essential that you know what’s out there in the music world, to develop your tastes and be able to differentiate between what music does it for you and what music doesn’t. Acquire such insight with these books about music.

#1 Slanted: How an Asian American Troublemaker Took on the Supreme Court

Slanted: How an Asian American Troublemaker Took on the Supreme Court
This book tells the firsthand story of starting The Slants, the world’s first and only all-Asian American dance rock band, and the importance of self-expression through art. That journey eventually took us all the way to the U.S Supreme Court over the right to register our trademark.

It’s a story that was well-covered by the media such as Rolling Stone, Billboard, Pitchfork, NPR, and more, but they often missed the central part of it: why a musician would be so stubborn in this kind of fight. The story weaves in personal narratives of performing music, gives insight into the life of a touring musician, and ultimately, what it means to be American.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#2 Spirituals and the Birth of a Black Entertainment Industry by Sandra Jean Graham

Spirituals and the Birth of a Black Entertainment Industry by Sandra Jean Graham
According to Professor Graham, this is the first book-length treatment of postbellum spirituals in theatrical entertainments.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#3 Room Full of Mirrors by Charles R. Cross

Room Full of Mirrors by Charles R. Cross
Room Full of Mirrors is a very interesting and thoroughly detailed book about the life of Jimi Hendrix. I do not want to give too much of the book away, but here is just one example from the book that most people do not know: Jimi’s father had 6 fingers on each hand and would often times use them to scare little kids (including Jimi’s friends).

It is little tidbits like this that really set this book apart from other biographies done on this guitar god. It follows his life from birth to death and even goes into details about his family roots and where his legacy is now.

A truly remarkable book, Room Full of Mirrors sets itself apart from the pack.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#4 Strings Attached by Joanne Lipman

Strings Attached by Joanne Lipman
The book is a mix of autobiography and biography of Mr. K (Melanie’s father.) He is a high school music teacher. The story revolves around Mr. K raising his two daughters and through a lot of disciplined arguments instilling expectations of practicing music to reach greatness.

It follows Mr. K’s amazing effects on his students and daughters while dealing with the tragedies of his life. You will cry and you will laugh, sometime at the same time. A moving story with a great underlying message. A great read either as an audiobook or as an old-fashioned page turner.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#5 Hamp & Doc: Lynn “doc” Skinner and the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival

Hamp & Doc: Lynn
Hamp & Doc: Lynn Doc Skinner and the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival. Music and magic came together in Moscow, Idaho, when jazz legend Lionel Hampton fell in love with music educator Lynn Doc Skinner’s idea: let students from remote areas of the country come to the University of Idaho’s jazz festival and learn directly from the greats.

With only that dream, the two men went on to grow what had been a modest annual event into a world-class celebration of music, education, love, and life-developing a deep and profound friendship. That accomplishment is at the heart of Hamp & Doc -Skinner’s memoir, as told to Alan Solan, former arts and entertainment editor for the Moscow-Pullman Daily News, who covered the festival for many years.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#6 Piano Dance by Ned Klein

Piano Dance by Ned Klein
For more than forty years, Ned Klein tuned and repaired pianos in all types of venues, from large concert halls to private homes. In Piano Dance, he provides a unique, behind-the-scenes perspective of performances ranging from major orchestra concerts to children’s recitals in private homes.

Always with an eye for the unique and special experiences music can provide, he offers a compassionate account of many of the people, both famous and private, that he has met over the years. His goal in writing the book is to enhance the reader’s interest in this fascinating instrument, the piano.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#7 Reflections Of A Love Supreme: Motown Through The Eyes Of Fans by Tom Ingrassia

Reflections Of A Love Supreme: Motown Through The Eyes Of Fans by Tom Ingrassia
Winner of both a National Indie Excellence Award and NABE Pinnacle Award as Best Music Book, Reflections Of A Love Supreme tells the story of Motown through the eyes–and camera lenses–of its fans. Featuring 150 photographs–most of them never-before published– Reflections presents personal. behind-the-scenes glimpses of the people, places and things that made Motown the music that inspired a generation.

Celebrating its 60th anniversary this year, the music of Motown still brings a smile and sense of pride whenever and wherever a Motown song is played. Motown is the music that changed the world in the 1960s–bridging the gaps between blacks and whites during a turbulent time in American history. And this book preserves that history.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

Contributors to this article
Simon Tam from The Slants LLC

Michael Chmura from Babson

Trent Hankinson from Aquaseca.band

Michael Arnold from TheMichaelArnold

Virginia Solan from Inkwater Press

Motown Tom Ingrassia from Tom Ingrassia Productions

Written by Zak Parker

Journalist, writer, musician, professional procrastinator. I'll add more here later.

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