Yesterday Once More: The Carpenters Reader

Overview

With a string of number-one hits showcasing Karen Carpenter's warm and distinctive vocals and Richard Carpenter's sophisticated compositions and arrangements, the Carpenters were responsible for some of the most popular music of the 1970s, and this compendium collects more than 50 articles, interviews, essays, reviews, and reassessments that chronicle the lives and career of this brother-sister musical team. Writings from pop journalists and historians such as Daniel J. Levitin, John Tobler, Digby Diehl, Ray ...

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Yesterday Once More: The Carpenters Reader

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Overview

With a string of number-one hits showcasing Karen Carpenter's warm and distinctive vocals and Richard Carpenter's sophisticated compositions and arrangements, the Carpenters were responsible for some of the most popular music of the 1970s, and this compendium collects more than 50 articles, interviews, essays, reviews, and reassessments that chronicle the lives and career of this brother-sister musical team. Writings from pop journalists and historians such as Daniel J. Levitin, John Tobler, Digby Diehl, Ray Coleman, Robert Hilburn, and Lester Bangs provide insight into the music and personalities of the duo who produced such timeless pop music. From serious musical analyses of the Carpenters’ arrangements to lighter pieces in which Karen and Richard discuss dating, cars, and high school, this new edition has been revised and expanded to include nearly a dozen additional pieces, some of which have never been published.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Unquestionably, the definitive historical recalling of the Carpenters . . . . Like the Carpenters' music, Schmidt's book about them delivers brilliantly, combining the talents of a gifted editor, the dedication of a devoted fan, and the admirable work of the writers he chose."  —New England Entertainment Digest

"This narrative down memory lane proves to be a pleasant trip . . . . Yesterday Once More is a pastiche of mostly affectionate and warm portrayals of two talented people who, in spite of their human frailties, gave the world a lasting legacy of music."  —Amplifier

"There was always something of the night about the Carpenters . . . . This compendium of interviews, concert reviews, and critical essays spans the duo's career and beyond."  —Mojo

"Fascinating . . . . It's not just the 'behind the music' insights that make this book important. . . . Yesterday Once More will make you want to dust off those old LPs and rediscover the Carpenters' pop magic."  —DISCoveries

"What looks on the surface like an uncritical celebration of an American pop institution turns out to be a fascinating exercise in musical archaeology . . . . Endlessly intriguing."  —Record Collector

“It’s a good resource for Carpenters fans, allowing you to watch the duo’s story unfold and see how the duo’s legacy has been re-evaluated since Karen’s tragic death.” —Goldmine

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781613744147
  • Publisher: Chicago Review Press, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/1/2012
  • Edition description: Revised and expanded edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 944,362
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Randy L. Schmidt

Randy L. Schmidt teaches music in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. He served as creative consultant for several television documentaries on the Carpenters, including the E! True Hollywood Story, A&E’s Biography, and VH1’s Behind the Music. He is the author of Little Girl Blue: The Life of Karen Carpenter. He lives in Denton, Texas.

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Table of Contents

Foreword Daniel J. Levitin xiii

Introduction Randy L. Schmidt xvii

Part I We've Only Just Begun

"The Carpenters: They've Only Just Begun" Dean Gautschy 3

"Moondust and Starlight: The Close to You Album" John Tobler 13

"The Carpenters and the Creeps" Lester Bangs 17

"Karen in the Kitchen: Who Says a Young Female Superstar Can't Be a Top-Notch Cook?" A&M Records Press Release 23

"They Put Romance into Rock: On the Road with the Carpenters, Who Still Believe Mother Knows Best" Digby Diehl 25

"The Carpenters: Nailing Down Success" Fiona Macdougall 29

Concert Review: Sands, Las Vegas, March 24, 1971 Variety 33

" 'Superstar': The Carpenters' Surprisingly Dirty Ditty" Johnny Black 35

"Rainy Days and Carpenters Always Get Me Down" Ken Michaels 39

"Why They're on Top?" Dan Armstrong 49

Concert Review: Riviera, Las Vegas, September 22, 1972 Variety 51

"Karen Carpenter: A Drummer Who Sang" Rod Fogarty 53

"The Choral Sound of the Carpenters" Frank Pooler 57

Part II Top of the World

"It Happens in the Middle of the Road: Confessions of a Carpenters Fan" John Tobler 65

Concert Review: Sahara, Tahoe, August 24, 1973 Variety 69

"The Carpenters: Soft Rock and 14 Gold Records" Frank H. Lieberman 71

"The Carpenters: The Singles 1969-1973" Marcello Carlin 79

"The Carpenters: Forbidden Fruit" Tom Smucker 85

"Up from Downey" Tom Nolan 89

"The Carpenters: An Interview" A&M Compendium 113

"The Carpenters: An Appraisal" Tom Nolan 131

Concert Review: Riviera, Las Vegas, August 24, 1975 Variety 135

"Like TV Dinner for the Ears" Dave Mcquay 137

"The Carpenters 'Nail' Neil Sedaka" Rona Barrett's Hollywood 141

"Carpenters-Good, Clean, Ail-American Aggro!" Ray Coleman 145

Part III There's a Kind of Hush

"It's an Overdose of Pretty" Joel Mcnally 177

"Karen Carpenter: Nothing to Hide Behind" Charlie Tuna 179

"Carpenters Über Alles!" Ray Coleman 195

Concert Review: London Palladium, November 25, 1976 Variety 205

" 'Surprise' by the Carpenters" Ed Harrison 207

Concert Review: Harrah's, Tahoe, August 4, 1977 Variety 211

"The Unwholesome Carpenters" Joel Mcnally 213

"The Carpenters Go Country?" Nancy Naglin 215

Concert Review: MGM Grand, Las Vegas, March 7, 1978 Variety 221

" 'If Somebody Would Just Let Us Know What the Problem Is …'" Bill Moran 223

"The Voice of Christmas: Karen Carpenter" Ted Naron 231

"Made in America" A&M Records Press Release 233

Part IV Rainy Days and Mondays

"Karen Carpenter Dies in Downey" Pat Mcgreevy 239

"Hundreds Attend Karen Carpenter Rites" Southeast News 245

"A Lesson in Art of Emotion: Karen Carpenter's Intimate Vocals Disarm a Critic" Robert Hilburn 249

"Thirty Minutes with Richard Carpenter" Pat Mcgreevy 253

"She'd Only Just Begun: Fine CBS Movie Tells Sad Story of Karen Carpenter" Ron Miller 257

" 'Karen Was Wasting Away… I Had a Drug Problem… and We Couldn't Help Each Other' " Richard Carpenter 261

"Carpenters Telepic Boosts Record Sales" Variety 265

"Becoming Karen and Richard: An Interview with Cynthia Gibb and Mitchell Anderson" Randy L. Schmidt 267

"Getting to the Bare Bones of Todd Haynes' Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story" Sheryl Farber 275

Part V A Song for You

"Yesterday, Once More" Stephen Whitty 287

"He's Only Just Begun: Loyal Brother Brings the Carpenters' Legacy into the '90s" Janet Wiscombe 289

"Yesterday Once More: An Exclusive HITS Interview with Richard Carpenter" David Konjoyan 293

"Pop Charts: How Richard Carpenter's Lush Arrangements Turned Hit Songs into Pop Classics" Daniel J. Levitin 299

"Karen Carpenter's 'Lost' LP" Jerry Crowe 307

Album Review: Karen Carpenter Tierney Smith 311

"An Interview with Richard Carpenter" Greg Rule 313

"Richard Carpenter Shows Why He's Still on Top of the World" John Woolard 321

"Rainy Days for a Sunny Girl: New Book Explores Singer's Private Torment" Sara Jordan 323

Acknowledgments 333

Contributors 335

Selected Discography 339

Selected Television Appearances 347

Credits 351

Index 355

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