Rock Concert: An Oral History as Told by the Artists, Backstage Insiders, and Fans Who Were There

Rock Concert: An Oral History as Told by the Artists, Backstage Insiders, and Fans Who Were There

by Marc Myers


$25.49 $30.00 Save 15% Current price is $25.49, Original price is $30. You Save 15%.
View All Available Formats & Editions
Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for delivery by Friday, December 3


A lively, entertaining, wide-ranging oral history of the golden age of the rock concert based on over ninety interviews with musicians, promoters, stagehands, and others who contributed to the huge cultural phenomenon that is live rock

Decades after the rise of rock music in the 1950s, the rock concert retains its allure and its power as a unifying experience—and as an influential multi-billion-dollar industry. In Rock Concert, acclaimed interviewer Marc Myers sets out to uncover the history of this compelling phenomenon, weaving together ground-breaking accounts from the people who were there.

Myers combines the tales of icons like Joan Baez, Ian Anderson, Alice Cooper, Steve Miller, Roger Waters, and Angus Young with figures such as the disc jockeys who first began playing rock on the radio, like Alan Freed in Cleveland and New York; the audio engineers that developed new technologies to accommodate ever-growing rock audiences; music journalists, like Rolling Stone's Cameron Crowe; and the promoters who organized it all, like Michael Lang, co-founder of Woodstock, to create a rounded and vivid account of live rock's stratospheric rise.

Rock Concert provides a fascinating, immediate look at the evolution of rock 'n' roll through the lens of live performances —spanning from the rise of R&B in the 1950s, through the hippie gatherings of the '60s, to the growing arena tours of the '70s and '80s. Elvis Presley's gyrating hips, the British Invasion that brought the Beatles in the '60s, the Grateful Dead's free flowing jams, and Pink Floyd's The Wall are just a few of the defining musical acts that drive this rich narrative. Featuring dozens of key players in the history of rock and filled with colorful anecdotes, Rock Concert will speak to anyone who has experienced the transcendence of live rock.

Related collections and offers

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780802157911
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Publication date: 11/09/2021
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 33,983
Product dimensions: 8.90(w) x 6.20(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Marc Myers is a frequent contributor to the Wall Street Journal, where he writes about music and the arts. He is the author of the critically acclaimed books Anatomy of a Song and Why Jazz Happened, and posts daily at, a three-time winner of the Jazz Journalists Association’s award for Jazz Blog of the Year.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

Part 1 The 1950s

Chapter 1 Los Angeles Auditoriums 11

Chapter 2 Cleveland Theaters 22

Chapter 3 Chicago Clubs 31

Chapter 4 Memphis Fairs 37

Chapter 5 Northeast Fests 50

Part 2 The 1960s

Cnapter 6 Folk at the Mall 65

Chapter 7 Pop's Endless Summer 76

Chapter 8 Dylan Invents Rock 97

Chapter 9 Ballrooms and Be-Ins 104

Chapter 10 Festival Mania 119

Part 3 The 1970s

Chapter 11 Image, Media, and Branding 161

Chapter 12 Arenas, Stadiums, and Tours 177

Chapter 13 Sight and Sound 201

Chapter 14 Concert Maximus 220

Chapter 15 Rise of Exurbia 240

Part 4 The 1980s

Chapter 16 Not Just Another Brick 251

Chapter 17 Killing the Radio Star 264

Chapter 18 Computerized Ticketing 274

Chapter 19 And in the End, Live Aid 285

Epilogue 295

Fifty Best Live Albums, Concert Films, and Rock Docs 299

Source List 305

Acknowledgments 311

Customer Reviews