Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Revolution: The Making of the Beatles' White Album

by David Quantick

Most books about the Beatles reveal the big picture first and ask questions afterward. This book reverses that approach. Revolution takes a fresh and often funny look at the magnificent and sometimes idiotic career path of the Beatles through the prism of one vital album--a record considered by many (including John Lennon) to be the one on which they reached their peak as songwriters. It focuses not just on the intimate recording details and creative process, but on the politics, music, and culture of the era, as well as the band's individual development amid increasing dissolution. In crisp and witty prose, the inside stories behind the making of the album are revealed: how the White Album got its look and name; why it included the most experimental track the Beatles ever recorded; how it inspired the bloody massacres of Charles Manson and his "Family"; why Ringo Starr walked out on the session and who replaced him; the actual identities of "Dear Prudence," "Sexy Sadie," "Martha My Dear," "Julia," and "Bungalow Bill"; on which song Yoko sang lead; which song is about Eric Clapton's teeth; what songs were left off the album, and much more.

David Quantick has written for most music journals, from Spin and the New Musical Express to Q and Blender. He wrote Eddie Izzard: Dress to Kill with Eddie Izzard, writes comedy for television and radio, and is responsible for www.thejunkiestv.com, the world's first Internet sitcom. He stars in the show Lloyd Cole Knew My Father, the only touring production to ask what it's really like to be a music journalist, and soon to be a BBC radio series. He is also the author of The Clash and Beck.

Some albums are so extraordinary that they influence generations of aspiring artists, and even redefine entire genres. The Vinyl Frontier is a distinguished series of books that examine the making of these groundbreaking records.

The Beatles' White Album is at once familiar, obscure, humorous, and iconoclastic. Lyrically and musically diverse, it emerged out of a time that saw a transition from peace to love to violence and unrest, while the Beatles themselves were falling apart both personally and professionally.

This intelligent and entertaining book is an in-depth analysis of the songs, the times, and the personalities that together made this album so memorable. David Quantick reveals the intimate creative processes of the band, and examines the ultimate significance and lasting legacy of this genre-defying album.

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