Popular Musicby Donald Clarke, Richard Newnham
From Abba to ZZ Top via Oasis, James Brown, and Frank Sinatra, this wonderful resource to the world's nonclassical music has been updated and revised to include a wider range of New World and ethnic musicians from
Fully revised and updated, with over 5,000 entries, this Second Edition is the most comprehensive and entertaining one-volume guide available.
From Abba to ZZ Top via Oasis, James Brown, and Frank Sinatra, this wonderful resource to the world's nonclassical music has been updated and revised to include a wider range of New World and ethnic musicians from Latin America and Africa along with a range of new entries from the contemporary Brit-pop scene and all of your old favorites. Donald Clarke covers a truly spectacular array of artists, from the early blues (Big Bill Broonzy, Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith) and ragtime (Scott Joplin, Eubie Blake) to the golden age of Broadway musicals, the great swing bands of the 1930s, jazz from around the world, American country, English folk, rock 'n' roll, reggae, soul, funk, punk, and the rest. The extensive Index ensures that no songwriter, musician, record label, or musical style is overlooked.
"If you like music, reserve a copy of this book before the browsers snap it up for its sheer readability. . . . Like the best references, it is a book to get lost in, looking up one thing and being pulled irresistibly to another, then another . . . a richly rewarding book." --Chicago Tribune
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This encyclopedia is an typical case of good and bad. On one hand, you have concise, interesting and sometimes unique information on a given musician or group, as well as hundreds of entries on obsure or hard-to-find people that cannot be found elsewhere. Then, on the other hand, you have a few mistakes (either that, or Clarke has access to insider information when all other reference books are dead wrong) and unexplainable omissions. The book reflects no-nonsense opinions, which may sometimes rub people the wrong way. That aside, it will definitely enhance any music reference library, as there is stuff here not found anywhere else, and it has just about as much information as one volume can have, although you have to be interested in a wide range of musical genres to appreciate this book fully. If you're into gangta rap or Eurodisco, you'd do better to find other specialized books to suit your needs.