Bill Baars

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The Number Ones: Twenty Chart-Topping Hits That Reveal the History of Pop Music

An entertaining and informative survey of some milestones of popular music. This book should delight anyone who has felt the magic only pop music can provide.


Legions of Jimi Hendrix fans will enjoy this lushly illustrated tribute. Recommended for all popular-music collections.

A Song for Everyone: The Story of Creedence Clearwater Revival

An updated bio of one of the most successful bands of the late 1960s. CCR’s unique swamp rock vibe and the timeless compositions have assured that classic rock staple CCR will remain popular for some time to come.

From the Ruins of Enlightenment: Beethoven and Schubert in Their Solitude

Beethoven is said to have said “Art demands of us that we shall not stand still,” and Kramer here effectively demonstrates that similar demands apply to musical analysis and revelation. Recommended for scholars of classical music.

O Say Can You Hear? A Cultural Biography of “The Star-Spangled Banner”

An excellent and comprehensive history of the music and lyrics of the United States’ national anthem, Clague’s book should be in every library.

Rock on Film: The Movies That Rocked the Big Screen

A delightful and informative introduction to the best (and worst!) documentaries, biopics, feature films, and musical extravaganzas of the last 70 years.

Everybody Thought We Were Crazy: Dennis Hopper, Brooke Hayward, and 1960s Los Angeles

Rozzo documents a roller-coaster ride of big ideas, big failures, lasting successes, and lost projects. Recommended for anyone interested in the culture of the 1960s.

Red Carpet: Hollywood, China, and the Global Battle for Cultural Supremacy

In an industry famous for self-congratulation Schwartzel takes viewers behind the silver screen to reveal a reality where revenues trump values and artistic choices take a back seat to political pressures. A must-read for anyone influenced by media in general and film in particular. And that means all of us.

Hard Rain: Bob Dylan, Oral Cultures, and the Meaning of History

Dylan fans, and they are legion, will appreciate the backstory and long history that influenced the style, structure, and content of one of his most powerful songs.

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