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Rolling From One Small Bar to the Next

The Chitlin’ Circuit was a string of venues in the American South where African American musicians and entertainers played through the early 19th century, when racial segregation was rampant. Preston Lauterbach’s The Chitlin Circuit: And the Road to Rock ‘n’ Roll examines Southern history and the musicians, promoters, and personalities on the circuit that may have never hit it big, but helped create the world of rhythm, blues, and rock and roll.

By Readers' Advisor on November 17, 2012 Categories: Books, Music, Nonfiction

LISTS: New Wave Women

Parallel Lines album coverNew Wave is a subgenre of rock that developed in the late 1970s and gained popularity in the 1980s. It’s marked by a highly experimental approach, a reliance on electronics (such as synthesizers), and an eccentric but modern mode of dress.

To meet the women of New Wave music, click here.

By Readers' Advisor on November 16, 2012 Categories: Lists, Music

Honoring 50 Years of Amnesty International and Bob Dylan

Chimes of Freedom album coverIt is arguable that Bob Dylan has made the world a better place. His songs have motivated mass cultural change, stimulated decades of dancing, and inspired legions of musicians who themselves have possibly, probably, made the world…if not better, at least more interesting. Chimes of Freedom: The Songs of Bob Dylan is a compilation of over 70 songs covered by classic and contemporary artists. Big names like Johnny Cash, Elvis Costello, Patti Smith, Dave Matthews, and Sting appear, alongside new artists like Miley Cyrus, The Avett Brothers, Rise Against, and Adele. All of the musicians dedicate their Dylan covers “…to people worldwide who are unjustly imprisoned or threatened for the peaceful expression of their beliefs.”

By Readers' Advisor on November 15, 2012 Categories: Music

Cynthia’s Pick: So

Cynthia staff picks photoPeter Gabriel’s  album, So, is probably best known for “In Your Eyes” and the iconic image of John Cusack holding up a boombox to win back his girlfriend in Say Anything. Gabriel used experimentation, world music influence, and thoughtful – almost heartbreaking – lyrics to create a classic album.

By Readers' Advisor on November 13, 2012 Categories: Music, Picks by Cynthia, Staff Picks

LISTS: Country Music Movies

Sweet Dreams DVD coverIt doesn’t matter if you love country music for the rhinestones, fringe, and big names or for the traditional, quiet, porch-singing tunes – there’s a country music movie out there for you.

Walk the line to good country music movies by clicking here.

By Readers' Advisor on November 9, 2012 Categories: Lists, Movies and Television, Music

Joyce’s Pick: That’s Life

Joyce staff picks photoListening to contemporary jazz these days, you don’t expect to get classic Sinatra and Bennett vocal stylings, but Landau Eugene Murphy, Jr. croons exactly that. That’s Life is the debut release of Landau, an America’s Got Talent winner. Take a new walk down memory lane and try it!

By Readers' Advisor on October 30, 2012 Categories: Music, Picks by Joyce, Staff Picks

Patty’s Pick: King of the Blues Guitar

Patty staff picks photoThere’s more to Albert King than “Born Under a Bad Sign”, though that’s the song that has been covered by everyone from Cream to Homer Simpson. If you like your blues with a groove, try the album King of the Blues Guitar.

By Readers' Advisor on October 9, 2012 Categories: Music, Staff Picks

LISTS: Rockabilly Music

Psychobilly Box CD coverWell, be-bop-a-lula, do you like rockabilly? Rockabilly is where country music meets rock ‘n roll. It was popularized in the 1950s by such legends as Bill Haley, Carl Perkins, Gene Vincent, and Elvis Presley – and it sure isn’t dead!

Click here for contemporary and classic rockabilly music that will get you wailin’ and wigglin’.

By Readers' Advisor on October 5, 2012 Categories: Lists, Music

Colleen’s Pick: Grace

Colleen staff picks photoDue to Jeff Buckley’s untimely death in 1997, we are only left with one complete studio album. Grace gives a sense of the great potential in Buckley’s vocal, guitar, and songwriting abilities. Songs range from sweet vocal melodies to hard guitar-riffing rock that will leave you craving more.

By Readers' Advisor on August 28, 2012 Categories: Music, Picks by Colleen, Staff Picks

When You’re the Only Dad at the Playground With a Forehead Tattoo

The Other F Word DVD coverPunk rockers aren’t exactly known for responsible life decisions. You know the drill – live fast, die young. The Other F Word examines what happens when subculture rock stars have to readjust their raucous lifestyles as they become parents. Lars Frederiksen of Rancid, Tim McIlrath of Rise Against, Fat Mike of NOFX, Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers, famed skateboarder Tony Hawk, and many others are interviewed in a documentary that is profanity-laden, but heartfelt. For most of the men, punk rock became a surrogate family, something to take the place of bad or nonexistent parents. These men are now charged with being the parents they wish they had, without losing themselves in the process.

By Readers' Advisor on August 16, 2012 Categories: Movies and Television, Music, Nonfiction