The Show That Never Ends: The Rise and Fall of Prog Rock

The Show That Never Ends: The Rise and Fall of Prog Rock

by David Weigel

Paperback(Reprint)

$17.95
View All Available Formats & Editions
Members save with free shipping everyday! 
See details

Overview

The wildly entertaining story of progressive rock, the music that ruled the 1970s charts—and has divided listeners ever since.

The Show That Never Ends is the definitive story of the extraordinary rise and fall of progressive (“prog”) rock. Epitomized by such classic, chart-topping bands as Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, and Emerson Lake & Palmer, along with such successors as Rush, Marillion, Asia, Styx, and Porcupine Tree, prog sold hundreds of millions of records. It brought into the mainstream concept albums, spaced-out cover art, crazy time signatures, multitrack recording, and stagecraft so bombastic it was spoofed in the classic movie This Is Spinal Tap.

With a vast knowledge of what Rolling Stone has called “the deliciously decadent genre that the punks failed to kill,” access to key people who made the music, and the passion of a true enthusiast, Washington Post national reporter David Weigel tells the story of prog in all its pomp, creativity, and excess.

Weigel explains exactly what was “progressive” about prog rock and how its complexity and experimentalism arose from such precursors as the Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds and the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper. He traces prog’s popularity from the massive success of Procol Harum’s “Whiter Shade of Pale” and the Moody Blues’ “Nights in White Satin” in 1967. He reveals how prog’s best-selling, epochal albums were made, including The Dark Side of the Moon, Thick as a Brick, and Tubular Bells. And he explores the rise of new instruments into the prog mix, such as the synthesizer, flute, mellotron, and—famously—the double-neck guitar.

The Show That Never Ends is filled with the candid reminiscences of prog’s celebrated musicians. It also features memorable portraits of the vital contributions of producers, empresarios, and technicians such as Richard Branson, Brian Eno, Ahmet Ertegun, and Bob Moog.

Ultimately, Weigel defends prog from the enormous derision it has received for a generation, and he reveals the new critical respect and popularity it has achieved in its contemporary resurgence.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780393356021
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 06/05/2018
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 296,641
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

David Weigel is a national reporter for the Washington Post. He has written for Bloomberg Businessweek, Slate, Reason, GQ, Esquire, USA Today, Rolling Stone, Politico, and many other journals. He lives in Washington, DC.

Table of Contents

Introduction ix

1 Children of the Blitz 1

2 The Psychedelic Boom 18

3 A Billion Times the Impact 40

4 Moog Men 64

5 A Higher Art Form 89

6 Hammers and Bells 117

7 Complexity Freaks 147

8 Fripperies 168

9 Death Knell 198

10 Neo-Prog 227

11 The Nostalgia Factory 254

Epilogue 279

Acknowledgments 291

Notes 295

Photo Credits 325

Index 327

Customer Reviews