100 books like Long and Winding Roads

By Kenneth Womack,

Here are 100 books that Long and Winding Roads fans have personally recommended if you like Long and Winding Roads. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Across the Great Divide: The Band and America

Thomas Kitts Author Of Ray Davies: Not Like Everybody Else

From my list on rock music and rock bands.

Why am I passionate about this?

Over the years, as a Professor of English at St. John's University, NY, I have shifted my research from American literature to popular culture, specifically rock music, a passion first ignited when I watched the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show, and re-ignited time and time again over the years. I have written articles, reviews, interviews, and a few books and I edit Popular Music and Society and Rock Music Studies.

Thomas' book list on rock music and rock bands

Thomas Kitts Why did Thomas love this book?

Hoskyns’s biography of The Band takes us on journey. We travel with these five distinct individuals as they form a brotherhood as they back Ronnie Hawkins for tour after tour for some seven years before becoming Bob Dylan’s backup band for a couple of more years. The first two albums, Music from Big Pink and The Band (The Brown Album) are now regarded as classics signaling the advent of a new genre, Americana. However, The Band’s story is ultimately sad as their tight brotherhood unravels in a swirl of drugs, alcohol, exhaustion, jealousies, and accusations. Yet despite all the tumult, Hoskyns celebrates the music.

By Barney Hoskyns,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Across the Great Divide as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This is a vivid and rollicking account of The Band's journey across three decades. Spanning the history of American rock and boasting a supporting cast that includes Dylan, Janis Joplin, and U2, the book brilliantly captures the raw magic and complex personalities of a group George Harrison called “the best band in the history of the universe.”, This revised U.S. edition includes a postscript, together with an obituary of Rick Danko and a brand-new interview with Robbie Robertson.


Book cover of Sweat: The Story of the Fleshtones, America’s Garage Band

Thomas Kitts Author Of Ray Davies: Not Like Everybody Else

From my list on rock music and rock bands.

Why am I passionate about this?

Over the years, as a Professor of English at St. John's University, NY, I have shifted my research from American literature to popular culture, specifically rock music, a passion first ignited when I watched the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show, and re-ignited time and time again over the years. I have written articles, reviews, interviews, and a few books and I edit Popular Music and Society and Rock Music Studies.

Thomas' book list on rock music and rock bands

Thomas Kitts Why did Thomas love this book?

Not many books are written about bands that labor in the trenches for over thirty years with little success. The Fleshtones formed in New York City in the mid 1970s, one of many new wave/punk bands seeking to fulfill their rock-‘n’-roll dream. Today, they are still looking to achieve that dream. Since 1982, they have released over 20 albums, none achieving commercial success. With just the right combination of humor and seriousness (like The Fleshtones themselves), Sweat documents the band’s bad luck, bad management, bad record contracts, bad decisions, and self-destructive behaviors. Always on the brink of breaking through, “The Fleshtones,” as lead-signer Peter Zaremba put it, “have stared in the face of success and laughed.”

By Joe Bonomo,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sweat as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It's June 2001. Keith Streng steers a cramped mini-van north along Lincoln Avenue in Chicago while Peter Zaremba, Bill Milhizer and Ken Fox sprawl in the back nursing hangovers and road weariness. They pull into the Apache, quaintly described as a "hooker hotel" by local folk, and drag their gear and merchandise into a decrepit room. Blood is splattered on the ceiling, roaches scurry on the walls and grainy porn blares on the television. Next door, two obese half-naked guys sit on a bed with an enormous bottle of cheap bourbon between them, staring idly at the TV.The Fleshtones are…


Book cover of Swim Through the Darkness: My Search for Craig Smith and the Mystery of Maitreya Kali

Michael Tau Author Of Extreme Music: From Silence to Noise and Everything In Between

From my list on absolutely arcane corners of human existence.

Why am I passionate about this?

Following mysterious trails and uncovering esoteric stories: it’s what I love to do, and it’s also what I love to read about. Before I released Extreme Music, I wrote extensively about unusual music subcultures and audiological anomalies, for example artists who put out hourlong blocks of unchanging white noise. I’ve learned that the most interesting ideas – and tales – exist in these outer fringes.

Michael's book list on absolutely arcane corners of human existence

Michael Tau Why did Michael love this book?

This book tells the story of Craig Smith, a musician and songwriter who had a brush with fame in the sixties before developing mental health issues while on the hippie trail in Afghanistan. Thereafter, he adopted an unusual alter ego, Maitreya Kali, under which he recorded two bizarre and now excruciatingly rare albums. Through years of research, author Mike Stax tells the story by patching together court and medical records, interviews with associates, and other shreds of data, even trying to track down Smith, who had been homeless for many years.

This is a sad but captivating work that uncovers the mysterious story of an obscure cranny of music history.

By Mike Stax,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Swim Through the Darkness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A successful young songwriter in 1960s becomes derailed by LSD and resulting madness.
Craig Smith was a 1960s golden boy – good looking, charismatic, outgoing; a preternaturally gifted musician and songwriter whose songs were recorded by some of the biggest names in entertainment – Andy Williams, Glen Campbell, the Monkees. His future success seemed assured, until an unexpected turn of events plunged him into a terrifying darkness. Clean-cut Craig Smith became Maitreya Kali, the self-proclaimed psychedelic Messiah. He laid out his poignant, disturbing schizophrenic vision on a sprawling self-released double-album before disappearing completely. Author Mike Stax spent fifteen years piecing…


Book cover of Gender, Branding, and the Modern Music Industry: The Social Construction of Female Popular Music Stars

Thomas Kitts Author Of Ray Davies: Not Like Everybody Else

From my list on rock music and rock bands.

Why am I passionate about this?

Over the years, as a Professor of English at St. John's University, NY, I have shifted my research from American literature to popular culture, specifically rock music, a passion first ignited when I watched the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show, and re-ignited time and time again over the years. I have written articles, reviews, interviews, and a few books and I edit Popular Music and Society and Rock Music Studies.

Thomas' book list on rock music and rock bands

Thomas Kitts Why did Thomas love this book?

With Gender, Branding, and the Modern Music Industry, Kristin Lieb provides an enlightening but often troubling account of the contemporary pop music industry. By focusing on women artists in the post-MTV era, Lieb demonstrates that female pop singers are judged more than ever on their sex appeal—despite the advances of the women’s movement over the past several decades. Lieb draws from both theorists and music industry insiders, giving her conclusions weight and credibility. Yet despite its frequently disturbing findings, the book is not overly cynical. Lieb, an energetic writer, has managed to maintain her enthusiasm for pop music.

By Kristin J. Lieb,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Gender, Branding, and the Modern Music Industry as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Gender, Branding, and The Modern Music Industry combines interview data with music industry professionals with theoretical frameworks from sociology, mass communication, and marketing to explain and explore the gender differences female artists experience.

This book provides a rare lens on the rigid packaging process that transforms female artists of various genres into female pop stars. Stars -- and the industry power brokers who make their fortunes -- have learned to prioritize sexual attractiveness over talent as they fight a crowded field for movie deals, magazine covers, and fashion lines, let alone record deals. This focus on the female pop star's…


Book cover of The Beatles: The Only Ever Authorised Biography

Spencer Leigh Author Of Little Richard: Send Me Some Lovin'

From my list on the Beatles.

Why am I passionate about this?

We all know Little Richard’s great hits like "Long Tall, Sally", "Tutti Frutti" and "Good Golly Miss Molly" and Little Richard’s life was as wild as his records. It’s excess all areas as Spencer Leigh tells the story of Little Richard in Send Me Some Lovin. It is a biography of someone who transformed popular music. Spencer Leigh was born in 1945 and hearing Little Richard for the first time in 1956 changed his life. He is a world expert on the Beatles and he has written a series of music-based biographies – Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, Bob Dylan, Simon and Garfunkel – all of which are full of facts and opinions.

Spencer's book list on the Beatles

Spencer Leigh Why did Spencer love this book?

Published in 1968, this is the only authorised biography of the Beatles.

Davies was in the room when Lennon and McCartney were songwriting, providing insights worth the price of admission alone. He could have interviewed more of the outriders but on the other hand, this is a brilliant account of their claustrophobic world.

By Hunter Davies,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Beatles as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

There's only one book that ever truly got inside the Beatles and this is it. The landmark, worldwide bestseller that has grown with the Beatles ever since.

During 1967 and 1968 Hunter Davies spent eighteen months with the Beatles at the peak of their powers as they defined a generation and rewrote popular music. As their only ever authorised biographer he had unparalleled access - not just to John, Paul, George and Ringo but to friends, family and colleagues. There when it mattered, he collected a wealth of intimate and revealing material that still makes this the classic Beatles book…


Book cover of The Beatles Complete Scores

Rich Maloof Author Of Jim Marshall - The Father of Loud: The Story of the Man Behind the World's Most Famous Guitar Amplifiers

From my list on books by musicians, for musicians.

Why am I passionate about this?

My tenure as editor-in-chief of Guitar magazine is well behind me now, but it always lights me up to create content for musicians, and to absorb it. These are my people, you see, a community of curious, empathic, chronically late daydreamers and night owls, good listeners all. I’m not qualified to comment on Adorno’s Aesthetic Theory or Stravinsky’s Poetics of Music, but neither do I want to talk about rock-star memoirs or fawning fictionalizations. No fanfare here, thank you. Instead, these are five books in which musicians may recognize some element of their creative self and come away with a little more fuel for the fire.

Rich's book list on books by musicians, for musicians

Rich Maloof Why did Rich love this book?

That’s right; it’s an entire book of musical notation. Like I said, this list is for players, not civilians.

I love that every note on every original Beatles record is transcribed here, right down to Ringo’s drum fills on “You Won’t See Me” and the guy saying “number nine” a hundred times on “Revolution 9.”

I love sitting down with my kid, who plays guitar, and discovering exactly how to recreate the parts we can’t work out by ear. I love seeing how the Beatles fit the gears together to make the wheels turn on these songs and how they used chords and notes that I have on the piano at my house, too.

By The Beatles,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Beatles Complete Scores as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

(Transcribed Score). A fitting tribute to possibly the greatest pop band ever - The Beatles. This outstanding edition features full scores and lyrics to all 210 titles recorded by The Beatles. Guitar and bass parts are in both standard notation and tablature. Also includes a full discography. Songs include: All You Need Is Love * And I Love Her * Baby You're a Rich Man * Back in the U.S.S.R. * The Ballad of John and Yoko * Blackbird * Can't Buy Me Love * Come Together * Drive My Car * Eleanor Rigby * From Me to You *…


Book cover of Tune In

Spencer Leigh Author Of Little Richard: Send Me Some Lovin'

From my list on the Beatles.

Why am I passionate about this?

We all know Little Richard’s great hits like "Long Tall, Sally", "Tutti Frutti" and "Good Golly Miss Molly" and Little Richard’s life was as wild as his records. It’s excess all areas as Spencer Leigh tells the story of Little Richard in Send Me Some Lovin. It is a biography of someone who transformed popular music. Spencer Leigh was born in 1945 and hearing Little Richard for the first time in 1956 changed his life. He is a world expert on the Beatles and he has written a series of music-based biographies – Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, Bob Dylan, Simon and Garfunkel – all of which are full of facts and opinions.

Spencer's book list on the Beatles

Spencer Leigh Why did Spencer love this book?

The Beatles in forensic detail up to the first Parlophone single, "Love Me Do".

Mark has interviewed almost everyone who mattered and he knows what to ask them and how to shape a book. I suggest you seek out the two-volume version running to 1,600 pages.

The Beatles are treated with as much reverence as Picasso and Shakespeare, and deservedly so.

By Mark Lewisohn,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Tune In as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Now in paperback, Tune In is the New York Times bestseller by the world’s leading Beatles authority – the first volume in a groundbreaking trilogy about the band that revolutionized music.
 
The Beatles have been in our lives for half a century and surely always will be. Still, somehow, their music excites, their influence resonates, their fame sustains. New generations find and love them, and while many other great artists come and go, the Beatles are beyond eclipse.
 
So . . . who really were these people, and just how did it all happen?
 
'The Beatles story' is everywhere. Told…


Book cover of The Beatles: The True Beginnings

Mike Southon Author Of The Beermat Entrepreneur: Turn Your good idea into a great business

From my list on the hidden mysteries of business, science, and nature.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been an entrepreneur for over 40 years and now pass on that knowledge to mentees and university students. The key to success in business is being able to attract and then learn from mentors, who, in my opinion, always should provide their knowledge, wisdom, and connections free of charge. As an entrepreneur, it’s easy to go down ‘The Dark Side’, especially if the pursuit of money and power becomes overwhelming. Many famous billionaires are not especially nice people. But there are many nice businesspeople out there and I aspire to be one of those, hence my pursuit of a daily advancement in esoteric, hermetic, and other knowledge.

Mike's book list on the hidden mysteries of business, science, and nature

Mike Southon Why did Mike love this book?

Nobody really understands why The Beatles are still so popular over 50 years after they last played together. Rory Best is the brother of Pete Best (famously replaced in The Beatles by Ringo Starr) and the son of Neil Aspinall (the Beatles Road Manager who later ran Apple Corporation - The Beatles’ own company). This book tells the story of the true origins of The Beatles, centred around his mother, Mona Best, and The Casbah Coffee Club.

By Roag Best, Pete Best, Rory Best

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Beatles as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Casbah Coffee Club, which opened in Liverpool on August 29, 1959, was the brainchild of Mona Best, the mother of Pete Best. It is well known that Pete Best was the drummer for The Beatles in their early days in Liverpool and Hamburg. But less well known is that The Beatles’ origins were in fact at Pete’s mother’s club-it was at the Casbah and with Mona Best’s blessing that the greatest popular music phenomenon of the twentieth century began.

And now, the basement club where The Quarrymen, The Silver Beatles, and finally The Beatles played over 90 times before…


Book cover of One Two Three Four: The Beatles in Time

Peter Jones Author Of Nightfly: The Life of Steely Dan's Donald Fagen

From my list on musicians and music from all genres.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have two major passions in life: music and writing. I started learning guitar aged 16, and my friends and I formed a band as soon as we possibly could. My first professional job was writing about pop music for a monthly magazine, and much later in life, I discovered jazz. Now I’m a bass-player, jazz singer, and composer who works with some of the finest jazz musicians in London, and I play regularly at Ronnie Scott’s club. As well as the Donald Fagen biography, I’ve also written biographies of the great jazz singers Mark Murphy (for me, the greatest of them all) and Jon Hendricks.

Peter's book list on musicians and music from all genres

Peter Jones Why did Peter love this book?

You thought you knew everything there was to know about The Beatles. I thought I did. I was wrong.

Craig Brown somehow manages to tell a very familiar story with details that either you never knew or had forgotten. He isn’t scraping the barrel: the book is full of excellent stories about the Fab Four, and sheds new light on where the band came from and where they ended up. It’s more than 600 pages long, and beautifully written, but a very easy read.

By Craig Brown,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked One Two Three Four as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

SHORTLISTED for the Baillie Gifford Prize's 25th Anniversary Winner of Winners award

WINNER OF THE BAILLIE GIFFORD PRIZE 2020

A Spectator Book of the Year * A Times Book of the Year * A Telegraph Book of the Year * A Sunday Times Book of the Year

From the award-winning author of Ma'am Darling: 99 Glimpses of Princess Margaret comes a fascinating, hilarious, kaleidoscopic biography of the Fab Four.

John Updike compared them to 'the sun coming out on an Easter morning'. Bob Dylan introduced them to drugs. The Duchess of Windsor adored them. Noel Coward despised them. JRR Tolkien…


Book cover of I Me Mine

Spencer Leigh Author Of Little Richard: Send Me Some Lovin'

From my list on the Beatles.

Why am I passionate about this?

We all know Little Richard’s great hits like "Long Tall, Sally", "Tutti Frutti" and "Good Golly Miss Molly" and Little Richard’s life was as wild as his records. It’s excess all areas as Spencer Leigh tells the story of Little Richard in Send Me Some Lovin. It is a biography of someone who transformed popular music. Spencer Leigh was born in 1945 and hearing Little Richard for the first time in 1956 changed his life. He is a world expert on the Beatles and he has written a series of music-based biographies – Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, Bob Dylan, Simon and Garfunkel – all of which are full of facts and opinions.

Spencer's book list on the Beatles

Spencer Leigh Why did Spencer love this book?

I love seeing the scraps of paper on which George wrote his songs like "Something" or "While My Guitar Gently Weeps".

I love seeing all his crossings-out and he offers some good commentary too. George comes over as a thoroughly nice person, but you do need strong wrists to read this book. (Gosh, I’m recommending heavy books!)

By George Harrison, Derek Taylor, Olivia Harrison (editor)

Why should I read it?

1 author picked I Me Mine as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"For me, the essence of this book is the lyrics and I believe they stand the test of time because they are written about man's eternal quest, dilemmas, joys and sorrows. George's lyrics were, in my opinion, the most spiritually conscious of our time" - Olivia Harrison

Cherished by fans and collectors, I Me Mine is the closest we will come to George Harrison's autobiography. This new volume has been significantly updated since the 1980 original. For the first time I Me Mine - The Extended Edition covers the full span of George Harrison's life and work, exploring his upbringing…


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