Gods and Guitars: Seeking the Sacred in Post-1960s Popular Music

Overview

Though American attitudes toward religion changed dramatically during the 1960s, interest in spirituality itself never diminished. If we listen closely, Michael Gilmour contends, we can hear an extensive religious vocabulary in the popular music of the decades that followed--articulating each generation's spiritual quest, a yearning for social justice, and the emotional highs of love and sex.

Probing the lyrical canons of seminal artists including Cat Stevens, the Rolling ...

See more details below
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (11) from $1.99   
  • New (5) from $4.93   
  • Used (6) from $1.99   
Sending request ...

Overview

Though American attitudes toward religion changed dramatically during the 1960s, interest in spirituality itself never diminished. If we listen closely, Michael Gilmour contends, we can hear an extensive religious vocabulary in the popular music of the decades that followed--articulating each generation's spiritual quest, a yearning for social justice, and the emotional highs of love and sex.

Probing the lyrical canons of seminal artists including Cat Stevens, the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, U2, Ozzy Osbourne, Pearl Jam, Madonna, and Kanye West, Gilmour considers the ways--and reasons why--pop music's secular poets and prophets adopted religious phrases, motifs, and sacred texts.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"With analysis that throbs with rhythm and passion, Gilmour demonstrates why rock 'n' roll is the sacred text of postmodern spirituality."

--Stephen H. Webb, Professor of Religion and Philosophy, Wabash College

"A fascinating caress and collision of rock music and Scriptures that displays a huge library of theological and art wisdom."

--Steve Stockman, author of Walk On: The Spiritual Journey Of U2 and The Rock Cries Out: Discovering Eternal Truth in Unlikely Music

Publishers Weekly
What do Salman Rushdie and literary criticism have to do with rock music? For Gilmour (Call Me the Seeker: Listening to Religion in Popular Music), these things are very much related. The author believes that song lyrics can sometimes stand on their own apart from music, and moreover, they can reveal something about an artist’s religious and spiritual views. This may not appear at first to be an enlightened perspective, but the author’s artful use of Rushdie’s fiction clearly shows how it is possible. The usual suspects in the religion and rock conversation (U2, Springsteen) are not as prominent, leaving room for more obscure but equally vital musicians like Daniel Lanois and Burton Cummings. Especially constructive is the chapter “Outrageous Religion,” about the influence of sexuality and the occult on some styles of rock music, such as heavy metal. The author also ventures into Hindu and Muslim influences on rock music, a foray that few scholars have attempted. His treatment enriches the dialogue between religion and rock well beyond the usual Judeo-Christian interpretations. Tune in, read on and enjoy. (Nov.)
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781602581395
  • Publisher: Baylor University Press
  • Publication date: 11/15/2009
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 180
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author


Michael J. Gilmour is the author of Call Me the Seeker: Listening to Religion in Popular Music and Tangled Up in the Bible: Bob Dylan and Scripture. He lives in Manitoba, Canada, where he serves on the faculty of Providence College.
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents


Introduction: Spirituality in Post-1960s Lyrics
Track 1: Religion on Record: Popular Music's Anxiety of Influence
Track 2: Church in a Guitar Case: Comfort and Compassion in Popular Music
Track 3: Outrageous Religion: Sex, Defiance, and Obsession with the Sacred
Track 4: Looking Beyond the Steeple and Menorah
Track 5: Fade Out: Stealing from the Sacred and Rewriting Religion
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)