Column

The Reading Room

Writing about writing about music.

Henry writes about music and music books for ND, The Bluegrass Situation, Country Standard Time, Publishers Weekly, and more.

The Reading Room

Writing about writing about music.

Henry writes about music and music books for ND, The Bluegrass Situation, Country Standard Time, Publishers Weekly, and more.

A Few Good Books: The Best Books of 2017

i hate to get nitpicky with you (with all the amazing stuff you acco,plish here) but that Felice & Boudloux Bryant book really annoyed and disappointed me......I expected sooo much more but it came across as one of those "Who Was/Who Is" books I buy my grandchildren......someone needs to do a proper bio on the Bryants.....terrific list otherwise; super-helpful......

Thanks, George; I agree that it would be great if someone would write a proper bio. Wilson is the wife of one of the sons of the Bryants, so this does have the family feel to it. The best part of the book are the quotations from the archives; well, and some of the pictures. Thanks for your note.

HC--- Got it......thanks for the perspective.....let me get on the phone to Pete Garulnick........

 

No mention of the George Martin biography.  I haven't read it, but it seems like it got some good reviews, and I've got a couple of Beatles-fan friends I was thinking of giving it to for Xmas.  No good or did it not count for purposes of the list?  Is the Rob Sheffield book a better read?  Thanks for the list!

Thanks for the great roundup of books to put on my list. The article was worth it for this line alone: "Sticky Fingers turned out not to be worth the wait, for it’s a bloated book about a bloated man." That's the only review I need. 

For what it's worth, Adam Sobsey is an excellent writer and Chrissie Hynde is a fascinating subject. I haven't read it yet, but given the author and subject this one promises to be great. 

And now for something completely different....How about a work of fiction? 

"He released four albums in his twenties and thirties through a small indie label. Each one sold less and less. He never produced a crossover hit, never scratched the Billboard 200. His music was in the nebulous, uncomfortble classification of alt-country, not quite folk or rock or down-home country. In other words, not at all radio-friendly. Save for a few critics in No Depression and American Songwriter who extolled his songs-beautiful, mournful, anguished, devastatingly sad, they raved-the media ignored him."

Don Lee describing the music and career of Yadin Park in "Lonesome Lies Before Us" (2017).