“How Music Works” by David Byrne
In this wide-ranging celebration of the power of music,David Byrne, among many topics, the early days of the recording industry, various types of music venues, birdsong and whale calls, the significance of mixtapes, the development of CDs, his love of African rhythms, and the concept of creativity and what it means to be creative.
“Mo’ Meta Blues: The World According to Questlove,” by Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson and Ben Greenman
Drummer, Producer, DJ, Composer, Tastemaker, and now Author. In Mo’ Metta Questlove reveals his own formative experiences–from growing up in 1970s West Philly as the son of a 1950s doo-wop singer, to finding his own way through the music world and ultimately co-founding and rising up with the Roots and his many musings on the state of hip hop.
“27: A History of the 27 Club Through the Lives of Brian Jones, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, Kurt Cobain, and Amy Winehouse,” by Howard Sounes
Brian Jones, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison of the Doors, Kurt Cobain and, Amy Winehouse. All talented musicians and all dead by 27. Author Howard Sounes conducts the definitive forensic investigation into the lives and deaths of the six most iconic members of the Club, plus another forty-four music industry figures who died at 27, to discover what, apart from coincidence, this phenomenon signifies.
“Finishing the Hat: Collected Lyrics (1954-1981) with Attendant Comments, Principles, Heresies, Grudges, Whines and Anecdotes” by Stephen Sondheim
Perfect for the aspiring lyricist in your life, Finishing the Hat is an informative look at the art and craft of lyric writing paired with a look into the life of the man whose name is synonymous with musical theater.
“The Riot Grrrl Collection” by Lisa Darms, Kathleen Hanna, Johanna Fateman
Before there was the internet there was the zine and the Riot Grrrl movement. While Feminist bands like Bikini Kill and Bratmobile fought for their place in a male-dominated punk scene, the Riot Grrrl movement empowered women to speak out against sexism and oppression. The Riot Grrrl Collection reproduces a sampling of the original zines, posters, and printed matter for the first time since their initial distribution in the 1980s and ’90s. $34.95, Urban Outfitters
“Bun B’s Rapper Coloring and Activity Book” by Shea Serrano This 48-page, fully interactive book of coloring pages, unbelievably clever activities, and smart plays on rap culture brings these stars and their music right into your living room.Featured rappers include Drake, Queen Latifah, Notorious B.I.G, Ice-T, and more.$10.52, Amazon
“Tune In: The Beatles: All These Years” by Mark Lewisohn
The definitive look into The Beatles. Mark Lewisohn uses his unprecedented archival access and hundreds of new interviews to construct the full story of the lives and work of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr. Ten years in the making, Tune In takes the Beatles from before their childhoods through the final hour of 1962. $20.55, Amazon
“Don’t Eat the Yellow Snow: Pop Music Wisdom” by Marcus Kraft
This wonderful book lists 250 of the best pop songs for those times that solid life advice is needed. From “Apply Some Pressure” to “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” you’ll find wisdom for any of life’s struggles. $16.31, Amazon