Monday, July 21, 2008

Obsessed with Progressive Rock ? Here Are The Top Five Books

I dont know about you but I cant get enough progressive rock; from Yes and Rush to the Mars Volta and Coheed and Cambria, from Uriah Heep to Kamelot, Pink Floyd to Ozric Tentacles......enough music to fill a 160GB iPod no worries !

Alot has been written about the genre.

5. The Strawberry Bricks Guide to Progressive Rock: Charles Snider

History and facts with an amazing 350 album reviews, he has a good balanced approach to reviewing and despite being an American covers the Uk and Europe very well.

4. The Billboard Guide to Progressive Rock: Bradley Smith

Brilliant attempt to classify the many giverse sub-genres (but does miss out on Gentle Giant and Rush). Good coverage of the 3 stages: The Hard Rock stage (1973-1976), the Classic Prog stage (1977-1982) and the Neo Prog stage (1983- 2005?)

3. The Progressive Rock Handbook Jerry Lucky

Has a comprehensive alphabetical listing of more than 3,200 bands and artists, which includes biographical information, a description, band history, and a discography for each entry(includeslesser-known bands and forgotten favorites).

2. The Progressive Rock Files Jerry Lucky

More of a chronological history than his other book, very well researched, appendix has a very exhaustive list of prog rock bands. His definition of prog and defense of it's critics is a good read, even if you dont agrtee with it all.

1. Rocking the Classics: English Progressive Rock and the Counter-Culture: Edward Macan

Here's what Keith Emerson has to say:

"While there have been thousands of books written on every form of music, progressive music as such has gotten a raw deal. Edward Macan has been brave enough to write the quintessential book on a curiously underrepresented form of music--and it's about time."--Keith Emerson, Emerson, Lake and Palmer


Jeff said...

Fantastic post, I've always been looking for a good prog rock book to pick up but never found one. Everyone I think about buying, I end up hearing bad things about. I'm going to check some of these out, have you actually read each one?

paul said...

ive read 4. and 2., the quality of the billboard one is best, the lucky one loks like it was made in someones bedroom but till reads well, does tend to fall appart though

Jeff said...

I just bought Lucky's, hopefully it doesn't fall apart, because I bought it used. I was reading the reviews on Amazon and someone actually wrote that the book came apart on them. I would have liked to have purchased number 1 but it was just too pricey for me. I'm not sure if you know about this site, but is an AMAZING site for everything prog.