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LET THE GOOD TIMES ROCK!

A FAN'S NOTES ON POST-WAR AMERICAN ROOTS MUSIC

 

Bill Millar

 

ISBN-13: 978-0-9519888-8-6 (ISBN: 0-9519888-8-3)

Paperback, 362 pages, 61 illustrations, 2004

Availability:  In print / In stock

 

DETAILS

For almost four decades, the name ‘Bill Millar’ has been synonymous with the very best in British music writing — from his pioneering books on the Drifters and the Coasters, to his long-running ‘Echoes’ column in Record Mirror, Let It Rock and Melody Maker, to the authoritative sleevenotes he has penned for dozens of albums.

This fabulous new book collects together 49 of his best pieces — some previously unpublished — in a thematic compilation covering hillbilly, rockabilly, R&B, rock’n’roll, doo-wop, swamp pop and soul.  Includes essays on the early Sixties doo-wop renaissance, acapella, the swamp pop phenomenon and blue-eyed soul, as well as detailed profiles of some of the most fascinating and influential personalities of each era: Johnnie Allan, Rod Bernard, Bob Bertram, Clarence 'Gatemouth' Brown, Roy Buchanan, Roy C, Ray Campi, Johnny Carroll, Roy Clark, Albert Collins, Mac Curtis, Big Al Downing, Charlie Gracie, Herb Hardesty, Dale Hawkins, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, Cecil Holmes, Ivory Joe Hunter, Bull Moose Jackson, Etta James, Jerry Jaye, Young Jessie, Johnny & The Hurricanes, Benny Joy, Baker Knight, Sonny Knight, Jerry Lee Lewis, Lonnie Mack, Stick McGhee, Big Jay McNeely, Bob Montgomery, Lattie Moore, Jimmy Murphy, Eddie Noack, Tony Orlando, Mike Pedicin, Carl Perkins, the Platters, Marvin Rainwater, John Richbourg, Tommy Sands, Major Bill Smith, the Velvets, Link Wray and Big Jim Wynn.

Passionate and knowledgable, music journalism rarely comes much better than this.  Over 60 illustrations.

REVIEWS

"Easy to read, interesting and informative, also funny and well-written"  Juke Blues (Late 2004)

"An easy read, awfully informing and entertaining"  Now Dig This (December 2004)

"A very worthwhile read"  Rock'n'Roll Musikmagazin (December 2004)  Translated from German

"Refreshing and inspiring... a rockin' good read"  Right Track (December 2004)

"Bill Millar is one of the staples of English rock writing and criticism.  He wouldn't wish to be reminded how long he's been writing about music, but take it from me, his books are absolutely interesting and authoritative... Anyways, Millar's new book is Let The Good Time Rock! and he does what few have been able to pull off.  In this day and age of information overkill, MiIlar is one of the few writers who can be talking about someone you may not have much interest in (Bull Moose Jackson) or already feel you know enough about (Roy Clark), but damn, you dive into this book and you're hooked!  He's such a good master of words that it's easy to read, and Millar's love for these people and their work is so clearly translated you'll find yourself staying up late reading, spinning weird old records in the background, and loving it.  And if all this isn't enough to convince you to buy the book, Peter Guralnick wrote the introduction!"  Discoveries (January 2005)

"Some books you just can't put down, both in the physical and critical sense, and this is one of them... Where Bill Millar scores over other writers is that in many cases he actually interviewed some of the people dealt with, or, in the case of Screamin' Jay Hawkins, also followed the man to nearly all his London gigs in 1965... All fascinating stuff and presented in Millar's rather unique and very readable style.  Although, as already stated, this is a book you don't want to or can't put down, if you are short of time there is great pleasure to be gained by just dipping in and reading the odd chapter."  Blues & Rhythm (January 2005)

"For anyone with even the most casual interest in the twisted roots of rock'n'roll, this is a fabulous book.  A civil servant by day, Bill Millar's true calling was rock historian.  This collection of punchy essays that originally appeared as magazine articles and album sleevenotes gives us the low-down on a slew of influential characters from Marvin Rainwater to Screamin' Jay Hawkins, all of whom Millar has interviewed, hung out with or researched in great detail.  A fascinating book that captures the spirit as well as the facts of rock'n'roll's less explored corners."  Classic American (January 2005)

"A decent present for anyone, providing absorbing reading for many a dark winter's night."  'New' Gandy Dancer (January 2005)

"This book is a delight from start to finish, just one heck of a good read for the roots music fan...  If you ever did read Peter Guralnick's Lost Highway and Feel Like Goin' Home from back in the 70s, you get the idea how this book is laid out.... Like the Guralnick books, you will (a) learn something, and (b) return to these pages time and again for some amazing stories from Bill... As soon as you open this book, I guar-on-tee that you will be captivated by the contents... I could not put this book down.  I give it an A+."  Holler (February-March 2005)

"A civil servant by day, Bill Millar's true calling was rock historian.  This collection of punchy essays that originally appeared as magazine articles and album sleevenotes gives us the low-down on a slew of influential characters from Marvin Rainwater to Screamin' Jay Hawkins, all of whom Millar has interviewed, hung out with or researched in great detail.  A fascinating book that captures the spirit as well as the facts of rock'n'roll's less explored corners."  Record Collector (March 2005)

'Millar writes with immense knowledge and authority... I would recommend it highly."  Country Music People (March 2005)

'Bill Millar is, at least metaphorically, the father of many of us who try to provide information about the pioneers of rock'n'roll and related forms like country, blues and soul.  He's been researching and writing about our favorite music since the 60s... simply put, this book is a motherlode of information.  Bill writes with both love for his subjects and a sense of humor - any of these chapters would have made a great article in this magazine.  Highly recommended."  Blue Suede News (Spring 2005)

'Without much exaggeration, Bill Millar set the benchmark for knowledgable music journalism as we know it today... If you don't know the difference between Lattie Moore and Latimore (one is a hillbilly singer from Kentucky, the other's a Tennessee soul man), then this is the book for you. Birmingham Post (16 April 2005)

 
 

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