by Tim Riley
Revised and Updated
"Brings new insight to the act we've known for all these years." --Jon Pareles, New York Times Book Review
"The best piece of writing about popular music, from someone knowledgeable about music, that I've read." --Ron Rosenbaum, New York Observer
When Tell Me Why first appeared in 1988, the Beatles' career appeared to be a closed subject. The story was over: the solo careers were grandiose apologies to expired greatness and Lennon's death precluded any real reunion talk. But several major, Beatle-driven developments have since blown their story apart, changed its meanings, and altered the band's glow for future generations. --from the Epilogue
Album by album, song by song, Tell Me Why gives us a new, deeper understanding of the Beatles by focusing on what's most important: the music. This completely revised and updated edition provides a comprehensive study of the Beatles' musical legacy--from their first releases in the early sixties to the material, both written and recorded, that's been released just in the last decade. In an extensive new epilogue, Tim Riley dissects the Anthology CDs and videos, the Live at the BBC sessions, and the global smash 1, and also reflects on both Paul McCartney's biography Many Years from Now and the death of George Harrison.
A rigorous and soulful exploration of the entire Beatles catalogue, Tell Me Why makes it clear that the legendary four were more than mere teen idols--they were brilliant musical innovators.
"Perhaps the first serious analysis of the Beatles' work and its impact on popular music, Tell Me Why is meticulous in its purpose and long overdue. . . . Of the hundreds of books written about [the Beatles] none bring the musical knowledge and the familiarity with that period that Riley offers here." --Cleveland Plain Dealer
Tim Riley's commentary on pop culture and classical music has appeared in the Washington Post, Boston Magazine, Boston Phoenix, Salon, and Feed. He is the author of Hard Rain: A Dylan Commentary and Madonna: Illustrated; the publisher of millennium pop, an online journal about popular culture; and the music critic for National Public Radio's "Here and Now."