The Penguin Book of Rock and Roll Writing

Clinton Heylin, Editor
Clinton Heylin, Editor Viking Books $27.5 (704p) ISBN 978-0-670-84559-0
Reviewed on: 11/02/1992
Release date: 11/01/1992
Paperback - 694 pages - 978-0-14-016836-5
Paperback - 978-0-14-023227-1
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With everything from the liner notes of an early Elvis album to a set of eulogies of rock stars who became casualties of their own lifestyles, this eminently satisfying collection of rock fyi to Genevieve and copy editors: Heylin makes a distinction between rock & roll and rock 'n' roll--too pedantic to be explored here, but i thought i'd skirt the issue entirely/eed writings spans nearly four decades, from the mid-1950s to the present. Invitingly, Heylin ( Dylan Behind the Shades ) organizes the 80 entries thematically rather than chronologically. An impressive array of authorities--among them Nat Hentoff, Nik Cohn, Patti Smith, Richard Hell and Greil Marcus--addresses such subjects as rock fiction, the business of rock, road tours and the changing face of the genre. Weak points are Heylin's smug introduction--``And what, pray tell, have I got against (say) Van Morrison, Neil Young or Deep Purple?''-- and his overemphasis on the influence of the Sex Pistols. Nonetheless, this is a serious attempt to define an elusive phenomenon. Illustrations not seen by PW. (Nov.)
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