Bing Crosby: A Pocketful of Dreams - The Early Years, 1903-1940

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Bing Crosby dominated American popular culture as no one ever has. From the dizzy era of Prohibition through the dark days of the Second World War, he was the world's most beloved entertainer. But he was also more than that: Bing Crosby was a musical innovator who practically invented modern pop singing.
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Bing Crosby: A Pocketful of Dreams - The Early Years, 1903-1940

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Overview

Bing Crosby dominated American popular culture as no one ever has. From the dizzy era of Prohibition through the dark days of the Second World War, he was the world's most beloved entertainer. But he was also more than that: Bing Crosby was a musical innovator who practically invented modern pop singing.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316881883
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • Publication date: 12/13/2000
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Pages: 736
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 1.62 (d)

Meet the Author

Gary Giddins

Gary Giddins is a long-time columnist for the Village Voice and a preeminent jazz critic who received the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Ralph J. Gleason Music Book Award, and the Bell Atlantic Award for Visions of Jazz: The First Century in 1998. His other books include Bing Crosby: A Pocketful of Dreams: The Early Years, 1903-1940, which won the Ralph J.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 3
Part 1 Bingo From Bingville
1 The Harrigans 15
2 The Crosbys 23
3 Tacoma 29
4 Spokane 35
5 Gonzaga 53
6 Mr. Interlocutor 73
7 Musicaladers 92
8 Vaudeville 113
9 Whiteman 141
10 Rhythm Boys 160
11 Of Cabbages and Kings 186
12 Dixie 218
13 Prosperity Is Just Around the Crooner 243
Part 2 Everybody's Bing
14 Big Broadcast 259
15 The Crosby Clause 282
16 Brother, Can You Spare a Dime? 297
17 Under Western Skies 322
18 More Than a Crooner 341
19 Decca 365
20 Kraft Music Hall 394
21 Public Relations 430
22 Homecoming 451
23 A Pocketful of Dreams 470
24 Captain Courageous 503
25 What's New 533
26 Easy Riders 559
Discography 593
Filmography 607
Notes and Sources 622
Interviews and Bibliography 671
Acknowledgments 687
Index 695
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 18, 2004

    Biography of American Music.

    A trully remarkable character who just happenned to be one of the top entertainers of the 20th century. Empressed by the author's honest depiction and deep research. Crosby comes across as a complex person that you can look up to. Thanks!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 4, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    The Bing you never knew

    Before starting this book you need to know that it is an exhaustively researched and detailed book, and in some places you begin to skip some details that seem repetitive. That being said, it is a fantastic book which I really enjoyed. Mr. Giddins covers all aspects of the first half of Bings life, and leaves no stone unturned. Everything you want to learn about the early Bing is in this book. Should be required reading for any musician, especially those involved with jazz. My only complaint is that we have never gotten a book on the second half.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2008

    The Story of a Star

    Giddins' book is the story of the seminal years of Bing Crosby's life. Like millions of others, I know Bing as a movie star first and singer second. This book offers the fascinating story of a young man immersed in various musical styles bringing them together to help popularize early jazz. One of my favorite quotes from the book is '...he was the first hip white person born in the United States', Artie Shaw. It's great to read about Bing in context of his time and to understand the importance of his influence. If you are a casual fan of either his music or his movies, you should give this book a try. I can't wait for the follow-up volume.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Excellent biography

    Like most people, this reviewer remembers Bing Crosby for his 'road' movies with Bob Hope, a few other flicks, and the song 'White Christmas. I also remember Bing riding the Aqueduct Special with the $2 better from Manhattan to Queens after he was a legend. However, apparently, Gary Giddins states that Bing was a very popular jazz singer during the 1920s and 1930s when non-Blacks were not just a rarity, but nonexistent in the music. <P>This biography is very interesting as it provides insight into Bing before he becomes a Hollywood icon. This book is for more than just Hollywood buffs, as Jazz fans will enjoy Bing's influence on the entertainment industry with emphasis on his jazz days. This is a well-written biography that will add to a legendary American hero. <P>Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2014

    Bing Crosby bio.

    I just enjoy ver classey peolpe from goalin Hollwood

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2011

    Wow

    To be honest.... I amm 11 years old and the first Bing Crosby movie I ever saw was Holiday Inn and I absolutely fell in love. Dispite my age, I love older movies, singers, books... things like that. The classics basically. This was definitly a book that I thoroughly enjoyed. I saw Holiday Inn around Christmas time this year and it is lovely. I had mistakened him for Fred Astair for a second during the movie. I love the era of what is now... the CLASSICS. Bing Crosby has such a lovely voice and so strong. I love. :)

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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