333sound

Listomania!

OK, well that went a little crazy in the last few hours – I thought we’d end up with around 250 proposals but it’s 471, if my counting is correct. (Down on how many we received last time, but considering how much work we were asking you to put into these, this time around, it’s truly remarkable.)

They’re listed here in the order in which we received them – which makes for a more absorbing list than the alphabetized version, anyway!

To reiterate: it’s a real honour to receive all these proposals, and we’re genuinely excited to read them. I haven’t yet figured out the nuts and bolts of the process, but it’s likely that – like last time – we’ll cut this down to a longlist and then either to a final list of confirmed titles, or we’ll have one more shortlist in the middle. If we have any questions about your proposal, we’ll be in touch. And, as always, we’ll do what we can to keep the series balanced, fun, interesting, and at least slightly unpredictable…

**

Brad Mehldau Trio Day Is Done
The Twilight Singers Blackberry Belle
The Cure Disintegration
The Waterboys Fisherman’s Blues
Godflesh Streetcleaner
Can Tago Mago
Prince Dirty Mind
The Go-Go’s Beauty and the Beat
Serge Gainsbourg Histoire de Melody Nelson
Air Moon Safari
AZ Doe or Die
The Kinks Something Else by the Kinks
Big Daddy Kane Long Live the Kane
Bob Dylan Time Out of Mind
Ashlee Simpson Autobiography
Paul Simon Hearts and Bones
Crass Christ – The Album
Smokey Robinson Going to a Go-Go
My Bloody Valentine Isn’t Anything
Sparks Kimono My House
Dennis Wilson Pacific Ocean Blue
Neurosis Times of Grace
The Frames For the Birds
Disco Inferno D.I. Go Pop
Alanis Morrissette Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie
Jonathan Richman I, Jonathan
Minor Threat Out of Step
Helmet Meantime
U2 Rattle and Hum
Arcade Fire The Suburbs
Helmet Meantime
Beyonce I Am…Sasha Fierce
Lisabo Ezlekuak
Various Artists Nuggets…
Phil Spector A Christmas Gift for You…
Midnight Oil Diesel and Dust
Yes Close to the Edge
Danger Mouse The Grey Album
The Wrens Meadowlands
The Decemberists Castaways and Cutouts
The Fall Dragnet
R.E.M. Automatic for the People
Phish Billy Breathes
Pete Seeger Darling Corey
You Am I Hourly Daily
The Go-Go’s Beauty and the Beat
The Wipers Youth of America
Phish A Live One
Drexciya Neptune’s Lair
Richard Hell and the Voidoids Blank Generation
Bright Eyes Fevers and Mirrors
The Grateful Dead Workingman’s Dead
Jay-Z The Blueprint
Gang of Four Entertainment!
The Fall Hex Enduction Hour
The Waterboys Fisherman’s Blues
Paul McCartney McCartney 2
Stereolab Emperor Tomato Ketchup
Daft Punk Discovery
Morrissey Vauxhall & I
Frank Zappa Lumpy Gravy
Richard Hell Destiny Street Repaired
X Under the Big Black Sun
Gang of Four Entertainment!
The Church Starfish
Rush 2112
Frank Zappa Joe’s Garage
Oasis Definitely Maybe
Paul and Linda McCartney Ram
Suede Dog Man Star
Emperor Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk
The Mekons Rock’n’Roll
The Waterboys Fisherman’s Blues
X Wild Gift
Nocturnal Emissions Spiritflesh
The Rolling Stones Beggars Banquet
Ol’ Dirty Bastard Nigga Please
Van Morrison and the Chieftains Irish Heartbeat
John Mellencamp The Lonesome Jubilee
King Crimson Discipline
The Game The Documentary
The Style Council My Ever Changing Moods/Café Bleu
Eric Bibb Booker’s Guitar
Hum You’d Prefer an Astronaut
Janis Joplin Pearl
The Black Crowes The Southern Harmony…
Paul Weller Wildwood
Kruder & Dorfmeister The K&D Sessions
Gil Scott-Heron Winter in America
Josh Ritter The Animal Years
The Dictators The Dictators Go Girl Crazy!
Juliana Hatfield Bed
Walter Carlos Switched-on Bach
The Stooges Fun House
Pet Shop Boys Fundamental
Wilco Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
Miles Davis In a Silent Way
Various Artists Kill Bill Vol 1 Soundtrack
David Bowie 1. Outside
The Godz Godz 2
Neil Young Chrome Dreams
Chris Watson Stepping into the Dark
Billy Joel The Nylon Curtain
The Blues Brothers Briefcase Full of Blues
The Grateful Dead EUROPE ’72
The Incredible String Band Wee Tam and the Big Huge
The Beatles Revolver
The Beatles A Hard Day’s Night
Gary Glitter Glitter
The Band The Band
Queen News of the World
Jandek Six and Six
The Monkees Pisces Aquarius Capricorn and Jones Ltd
Ry Cooder Paris, Texas – Original Soundtrack
Half Japanese 1/2 Gentlemen/Not Beasts
Modest Mouse The Moon & Antarctica
The Electric Prunes The Electric Prunes
Scott Fagan et al Soon: A Rock Opera – A Cast Recording That Never Was
Van Morrison Saint Dominic’s Preview
Daughters Hell Songs
The Sex Pistols Never Mind the Bollocks…
Bob Dylan Self Portrait
Manic Street Preachers The Holy Bible
They Might Be Giants Lincoln
Jimi Hendrix Band of Gypsys
War The World Is a Ghetto
Sinead O’Connor I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got
XTC Skylarking
Isaac Hayes Hot Buttered Soul
Lauryn Hill The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds Tender Prey
U2 Pop
Frank Sinatra Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely
The Strokes Is This It
Cherish the Ladies Woman of the House
The Jam All Mod Cons
Bob Dylan Bringing It All Back Home
The Dandy Warhols Odditorium or Warlords of Mars
Emmylou Harris Wrecking Ball
Depeche Mode Some Great Reward
Nirvana Incesticide
Lady Gaga The Fame
Talking Heads True Stories
Pet Shop Boys Very
Amy Rigby Diary of a Mod Housewife
The Mekons Rock’n’Roll
Sheryl Crow Sheryl Crow
The Dandy Warhols Come Down
Neil Young On the Beach
Richard Hell and the Voidoids Blank Generation
The Dream Syndicate The Days of Wine and Roses
Van Halen Van Halen
Diamanda Galas Plague Mass
Combustible Edison I, Swinger
Fugazi Red Medicine
Bee Gees Best of the Bee Gees Vol. 1
Rufus Wainwright Want
Jean Michel Jarre The Concerts in China
Motley Crue Too Fast for Love
Jim O’Rourke Insignificance
Metallica Master of Puppets
Bright Eyes Lifted
David Bowie Diamond Dogs
Beat Happening Beat Happening
Animal Collective Feels
Creedence Clearwater Revival Green River
Woody Guthrie Ballads of Sacco and Vanzetti
John Hartford Aereo-Plain
De La Soul De La Soul is Dead
Ed McCurdy The Best of Dalliance
They Might Be Giants Flood
Alice Cooper Welcome to my Nightmare
Various Artists Big Hits of Mid America Vol. III
Blue Oyster Cult Some Enchanted Evening
The Mountain Goats All Hail West Texas
Jackson Browne Running on Empty
Harry Nilsson A Little Touch of Smilsson in the Night
The Go-Betweens 16 Lovers Lane
Cardiacs A Little Man And A House And The Whole World Window
Manic Street Preachers Journal For Plague Lovers
Blondie Parallel Lines
The Long Blondes Couples
Boards of Canada Music Has the Right to Children
The Mountain Goats The Sunset Tree
Low The Great Destroyer
Dave Matthews Band Under the Table and Dreaming
Eminem The Slim Shady LP
The Beatles The Beatles (The White Album)
Tindersticks The Second Tindersticks Album
Ultravox Vienna
John Prine John Prine
Cat Power Moon Pix
Diamanda Galas Malediction and Prayer
Procol Harum A Salty Dog
The Jesus and Mary Chain Psychocandy
Dead Kennedys Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables
Taylor Swift Fearless
Buffalo Springfield Buffalo Springfield Again
The Mountain Goats All Hail West Texas
Saves the Day Stay What You Are
Neurosis Through Silver in Blood
Simple Minds New Gold Dream (81-82-83-84)
Why? Elephant Eyelash
The Kleptones A Night at the Hip-Hopera
Lady Gaga Born This Way
Manic Street Preachers The Holy Bible
Bob Dylan John Wesley Harding
The Wu-Tang Clan Enter the Wu Tang (36 Chambers)
The Beach Boys Smile
Janet Jackson Control
Gogol Bordello Gypsy Punks: Underdog World Strike
Underworld Everything, Everything
John Cale Paris 1919
Jandek Ready for the House
The Arcade Fire Neon Bible
Pere Ubu The Modern Dance
Genesis The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway
Michael Jackson Dangerous
Ayumi Hamasaki I am…
Modest Mouse The Lonesome Crowded West
Red Hot Chili Peppers Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magik
Heart Dreamboat Annie
Various Artists The 1969 Warner / Reprise Songbook
Donna Summer Live and More
Green Day Dookie
Alex Chilton Like Flies on Sherbert
The Lemonheads Come On Feel the Lemonheads
Sleater-Kinney Dig Me Out
X Under the Big Black Sun
Morrissey Vauxhall & I
Hole Live Through This
Lady Gaga The Fame Monster
Led Zeppelin Presence
Refused The Shape of Punk to Come
John Lennon and Yoko Ono Double Fantasy
The Hold Steady Separation Sunday
Richard Hell and the Voidoids Blank Generation
R.E.M. New Adventures in Hi-Fi
Bang Camaro Bang Camaro
Jawbreaker Dear You
Smashing Pumpkins Siamese Dream
The Mountain Goats All Hail West Texas
The Dismemberment Plan Emergency & I
Cyndi Lauper She’s So Unusual
Robert Johnson King of the Delta Blues Singers
Sigur Ros ( )
M.I.A. Arular
Wilco Being There
Doug Sahm Doug Sahm and Band
The Drive-By Truckers Southern Rock Opera
Fela and Afrika 70 Zombie
Sinead O’Connor I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds The Firstborn is Dead
KISS Destroyer
Weezer Weezer
Duran Duran Seven and the Ragged Tiger
Rage Against the Machine Rage Against the Machine
Iron and Wine The Creek Drank the Cradle
My Morning Jacket Z
The Beach Boys Smile
Randy Newman Good Old Boys
Green Day American Idiot
Rammstein Sehnsucht
Jackson C. Frank Jackson C. Frank
The Sex Pistols Never Mind the Bollocks…
The Gun Club Fire of Love
Various Artists The Best of James Bond
Throwing Muses Throwing Muses
Kanye West My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
Nico Desertshore
Bonnie Raitt Nick of Time
The Jesus and Mary Chain Psychocandy
Donny Hathaway These Songs for You, Live!
The Go-Betweens Liberty Belle & The Black Diamond Express
Minor Threat Complete Discography
The Beach Boys All Summer Long
Tori Amos Little Earthquakes
Jandek Chair Beside A Window
Parliament Mothership Connection
Yes Tales from Topograhic Oceans
Kraftwerk Trans-Europe Express
Queen News of the World
The Doors Strange Days
The Tragically Hip PhantomPower
New Order Power, Corruption and Lies
The Saints (I’m) Stranded
Faye Wong Anxiety
Urge Overkill Saturation
Bronski Beat The Age of Consent
My Chemical Romance Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge
Scott Walker The Drift
Manic Street Preachers The Holy Bible
Van Halen 1984
Moodymann Silent Introduction
The Mountain Goats All Hail West Texas
Tubeway Army Replicas
Boards of Canada Geogaddi
Devo Freedom of Choice
The Go-Betweens Before Hollywood
The Monkees Head
Jay-Z The Blueprint
Meat Loaf Bat Out of Hell
Bjork Biophilia
Randy Newman Good Old Boys
The Pretenders The Pretenders
The Microphones The Glow Pt. 2
Madonna American Life
Stevie Nicks Bella Donna
Faith No More Angel Dust
Primal Scream XTMNTR
M.I.A. Kala
The Clean Boodle Boodle Boodle
Van Morrison Astral Weeks
The Shaggs Philosophy of the World
Miles Davis Filles de Kilimanjaro
PJ Harvey Let England Shake
Refused The Shape of Punk to Come
Vangelis Chariots of Fire
Mike Watt Ball-Hog or Tugboat
Elvis Presley The Sun Sessions
Townes Van Zandt Flyin’ Shoes
Wilco Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
Grandaddy The Sophtware Slump
Sloan Twice Removed
Paul Simon Graceland
Blondie Parallel Lines
Operation Ivy Energy
Counting Crows August and Everything After
Cream Wheels of Fire
Tricky Maxinquaye
Wolf Parade Apologies to the Queen Mary
Husker Du New Day Rising
Willie Nelson Red Headed Stranger
They Might Be Giants Flood
The Exploited Troops of Tomorrow
Oval Systemich
Camper Van Beethoven Tusk
Juliana Hatfield Hey Babe
Squeeze East Side Story
The Congos Heart of the Congos
Gogol Bordello Gypsy Punks: Underdog World Strike
Booker T and the MGs Green Onions
Giant Crab A Giant Crab Comes Forth
Kraftwerk The Man-Machine
Jason and the Scorchers Lost & Found
Roxy Music Stranded
Fiery Furnaces Blueberry Boat
Animal Collective Sung Tongs
Queen A Day at the Races
New Model Army Thunder and Consolation
Genesis Selling England by the Pound
John Lennon Live in New York City
Various Artists No New York
Pet Shop Boys Behaviour
Pet Shop Boys Introspective
Half Man Half Biscuit Back in the DHSS
Built To Spill There’s Nothing Wrong with Love
Echo and the Bunnymen Crocodiles
Shane McGowan and the Popes The Crock of Gold
Grinderman Grinderman 2
Various Artists K-Tel’s Dynamite
The Silver Jews Tanglewood Numbers
Bob Marley and the Wailers Catch a Fire
Malcolm McLaren Duck Rock
Big Black Songs about Fucking
Elton John Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
Fugazi In on the Kill Taker
Duran Duran Rio
The Pharcyde Labcabincalifornia
Fiona Apple Extraordinary Machine
Black Flag Damaged
U.K. U.K.
Todd Rundgren Something/Anything
The Monkees Pisces Aquarius Capricorn and Jones Ltd
Broadcast The Noise Made By People
The Wrens Meadowlands
Kevin Coyne Marjory Razor Blade
Tears for Fears The Hurting
Fugazi Repeater
Poe Haunted
Bob Dylan Self Portrait
Kate Bush The Sensual World
Company Flow Funcrusher Plus
Danger Mouse The Grey Album
Talk Talk Laughing Stock
Black 47 Fire of Freedom
Joanna Newsom Ys
Electric Light Orchestra Out of the Blue
Danger Mouse The Grey Album
Art Brut Bang Bang Rock and Roll
Caetano Veloso Caetano Veloso
The Psychedlic Furs Talk Talk Talk
Clutch Clutch
Dead Kennedys Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables
The Mothers of Invention We’re Only In It For The Money
Insane Clown Posse The Great Milenko
Laura Nyro New York Tendaberry
The Clash Sandinista!
The Mountain Goats All Hail West Texas
Junie When We Do
Drake Thank Me Later
Rush Grace Under Pressure
Madonna Like A Virgin
Bobbie Gentry Ode to Billie Joe
Fiona Apple When the Pawn…
Andrew W.K. I Get Wet
Van Halen Diver Down
Badfinger Straight Up
Britney Spears In the Zone
George Benson Breezin’
Voivod Nothingface
KISS Music from the Elder
Bruce Springsteen Born To Run
Against Me! Reinventing Axl Rose
Various Artists No New York
The Kinks Arthur of the Decline and Fall of the British Empire
Rush 2112
Smashing Pumpkins Siamese Dream
Todd Rundgren Todd
The Soft Boys Underwater Moonlight
Pete Rodriguez I Like It Like That
The Chills Kaleidoscope World
M. Ward Transfiguration of Vincent
The Pharcyde Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde
J. Dilla Donuts
The Modern Lovers The Modern Lovers
Various Artists Music from and Inspired by Mission Impossible 2
The Who Quadrophenia
The Isley Brothers 3 + 3
Mayo Thompson Corky’s Debt to His Father
Queen Hot Space
John Lennon John Lennon / Plastic Ono Band
John Cage and David Tudor Indeterminacy
Van Halen 5150
The Modern Lovers The Modern Lovers
Shuggie Otis Inspiration Information
dc Talk Jesus Freak
Rick James Street Songs
Faust The Faust Tapes
Hanson Middle of Nowhere
The Mekons So Good It Hurts
Fiona Apple When the Pawn…
Wilco A Ghost Is Born
Iggy Pop New Values
Parliament Mothership Connection
Harry Belafonte Calypso
The Beatles The Beatles (The White Album)
Café Tacuba Re
Gillian Welch Time (the Revelator)
Eminem Relapse
John Mayer Room for Squares
Sloan Twice Removed
The Dixie Chicks Taking the Long Way
Kanye West My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
Aphex Twin Selected Ambient Works Volume II
Firesign Theatre Everything You Know Is Wrong
Tori Amos American Doll Posse
Outkast Stankonia
Thin Lizzy Vagabonds of the Western World
Black Flag Damaged
Bad Brains Bad Brains
Lou Reed The Bells
Exuma Exuma
Joe Jackson Look Sharp!
The Arcade Fire Funeral
Bee Gees and Various Artists Saturday Night Fever Soundtrack
John Cage and David Tudor Indeterminacy
Shudder to Think Pony Express Record
Brian Eno and David Byrne My Life in the Bush of Ghosts
Los Lobos KIKO
The KLF Chill Out

**

135 comments

  1. They've all been astoundingly complete and comprehensive so far: I'm bowled over by how much time people put into these proposals. As for sure-fire winners so far – hmmm. Best to keep that stuff quiet for now…

  2. Definitely keep that stuff quiet for now. If you're reading on order received, you might not get to mine for a while and I'm hoping you'll still be able to be bowled over by then.

  3. I'd be wary of any of the proposals handed in during the final day or two — do you really want unorganized slackers on your team, who may or may not hand in completed books on time or at all?:-)

  4. Some people's schedules are less forgiving than that, Anonymous 3:53, and they have a scant amount of free time with which to effect the best level of completeness/comprehensiveness. That said, such stuff is probably easier to shift around once the deal is a lock, but "I'm writing a proposal for a book that may or may not happen" is a harder excuse for employers etc. take seriously. Everybody that got it in by the deadline oughta be AOK. It's the ones that didn't that are more suspect… but then they aren't in the running, are they?SincerelyThe KLF guy (no, not really)

  5. Anon at 3:53 made me laugh: "I'd be wary of any of the proposals handed in during the final day or two — do you really want unorganized slackers on your team, who may or may not hand in completed books on time or at all?"Alternatively, David, you could be wary of those who fired off a proposal as soon as possible, as if it was all a race to get to the head of a queue!! Maybe the disappointment of no-shows for previously commissioned books is what led to the requirement for more detailed proposals and writing samples this time around.

  6. "Alternatively, David, you could be wary of those who fired off a proposal as soon as possible, as if it was all a race to get to the head of a queue!!"Nice try, slacker.

  7. Anon-6pm – I’d be shocked if the number no-shows wasn’t the reason for the more elaborate proposal requirements. I mean, publishers are used to having a few of their commissioned titles never coming in, but it seems like a rather alarming number of books from the last 33 1/3 open call for proposals ended up fizzling out. Frankly, I was wondering if they’d even do the open proposal thing again, considering all the authors who couldn’t get their shit together last time. (Slackers! Making it more time-consuming for the rest of us!)

  8. I would buy books on these albums without thinking about because they're my favorites:Bob Dylan Time Out of MindVarious Artists NuggetsYou Am I Hourly DailyThe Fall Hex Enduction HourNick Cave and the Bad Seeds Tender PreyCat Power Moon PixRefused The Shape of Punk to ComeThe Saints (I'm) StrandedFaith No More Angel DustVarious Artists No New YorkFiona Apple Extraordinary MachineFiona Apple When the Pawn…I would think about buying books on these album because they are classics:Janis Joplin PearlThe Stooges Fun HouseRy Cooder Paris, TexasBob Dylan Bringing It All Back HomeNeil Young On the BeachBlondie Parallel LinesThe Beatles The Beatles (The White Album)Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds The Firstborn is DeadThe Gun Club Fire of LoveThe Go-Betweens Before HollywoodVan Morrison Astral WeeksI would think longer about maybe getting these ones because they're great albums and you should have a book about them anyway:Midnight Oil Diesel and DustThe Church StarfishFrank Sinatra Sings for Only the LonelyThe Go-Betweens 16 Lovers LaneCyndi Lauper She's So UnusualRobert Johnson King of the Delta Blues SingersM.I.A. ArularThe Go-Betweens Liberty Belle & The Black Diamond ExpressTori Amos Little EarthquakesBlack Flag DamagedBut the 20 books that I think you with published in the end which I might get one, I'm always disappointing what you pick to published:The Cure DisintegrationJay-Z The BlueprintOasis Definitely MaybeBob Dylan Self PortraitThe Strokes Is This ItMetallica Master of PuppetsDe La Soul De La Soul is DeadThe Wu-Tang Clan Enter the Wu Tang (36 Chambers)Red Hot Chili Peppers Blood, Sugar, Sex, MagikSmashing Pumpkins Siamese DreamSigur Ros ( )The Sex Pistols Never Mind the BollocksKraftwerk Trans-Europe ExpressThe Doors Strange DaysNew Order Power, Corruption and LiesBob Marley and the Wailers Catch a FireKate Bush The Sensual WorldMadonna Like A VirginJohn Lennon John Lennon / Plastic Ono BandThe Arcade Fire FuneralOf-course previous published writers gets heads up anyway so who ever is one with a good proposal will go to the top of the pile already but I hope you do published some I would buy.

  9. 7:00 Anon, slacker-detector – haha! My guess is that ability to deliver will not be judged on who got their proposal in two, five or ten days before the deadline, but such factors as: – is it a subject that is likely to sell? – has the prospective author got a good angle on it? – are there directly competing books on the subject – has the prospective author a track record that would suggest he/she is not a *slacker* (even if their proposal came the day of deadline!), but can deliver 40,000 words (and not just a proposal of several thousand words) – can the prospective author write (hence the requirement of a writing sample ?!)

  10. "… which is all to say, rather depressingly, that an awful lot of readers will look at books about primarily as sources of information; rather than experiments in how one can write about music … i.e., "I really wanted to know what kind of pre-amp Slash was using on that tune, not what some dweeb writer thought about it …" – NovaI now want to read Nova's book, irrespective of what/who it's about.

  11. I always hated that inane comment by … Frank Zappa (or maybe it was Elvis Costello) that "writing about music is like fishing about architecture." – NovaI think it was Elvis Costello – "dancing" about architecture.You're right, it's an inane comment. Writing about music is like… writing about architecture! (Or writing about painting or dance or any other art form. Or, in principle, writing about anything whatsoever.) Writing's an abstraction from the thing you're writing about (d'uh!).It becomes even more of a philistine's maxim if you take every word of it literally. When you consider the work of choreographers such as Pina Bausch or Merce Cunningham. I'd imagine they would find architecture a very easy thing to dance about.in space.

  12. "Well first of all, people who have a negative opinion of something are far more likely to write reviews expressing their disappointment. I haven't left positive reviews of my most loved and cherished books on Amazon, or anywhere else on the Internet for that matter."Yeah, and this is one of many reasons I'm sceptical of the value of Amazon reviews. I'm aware that, yes, there are people that do indeed make book (or album) purchases based solely on the number of reviews that say "this book rocks!" or "the best book on XXXXX there is!". But the idea that that, in any way, gives you information about whether a work of art or scholarship is actually any good or not seems insane to me. I find it hard enough to decide whether functional items such as toasters are a good buy, via amazon reviews, let alone books or music! Even whether someone "likes" a book – or equating that with value for money – seems quite a strange one to me. I've bought plenty of books and not liked them for plenty of reasons. I doubt the Amazon readers quoted in this thread would see it that way, but they've gained something in buying a book that they thought would do a particular thing, only to find that is does something else. However you look at them, they are "about" the albums in question. Except they're not. Except they are.More to the point, what I think is depressing in the tone of many of those reviews is the conspicuous absence of even the concept that what makes a good book on Black Sabbath (or Prince, or Bach, or angling) is the writer's way with prose. I'll read a book about music I hate if it's well written. I won't read a book about music I love if it's boring.

  13. """""My guess is that ability to deliver will not be judged on who got their proposal in two, five or ten days before the deadline, but such factors as:- is it a subject that is likely to sell?""""""Likely to sell" is a funny thing though. Eg. you can put out a really niche book, but if you find the audience then you can still sell a lot, while if you look at some of the 33 1/3 books, even ones on the most obvious, big groups have failed to sell, because they didn't manage to reach those fans for whatever reason. Then you have something like the new Talking Heads one, where the author is a talking point himself, so press cover the book a lot more readily and it sells more because it reaches more people.If I was choosing, and I wanted to sell a bunch of books, this is what I'd look for:- Who is the book aimed at and how easy are they to reach? Can we as a publisher reach them, have we reached them successfully before?- Is the author someone who has any decent ways of marketing the book, and has he/she managed to reach this audience before? eg. does he/she write for music magazines and have contacts there who will help publicize the book to this particular audience? Does he/she run a popular website to do with this particular group/artist?- Is the book written in a way that will appeal to the audience once they have been reached, eg. do Beach Boys fans want an academic essay on vegetables? Do Kanye fans want to know the history of the koala? Do Prince fans want an epic poem about Derrida?- Can the writer actually write well and complete the book.I wouldn't be that bothered about competing books, unless they are really directly competing on the exact same angle (eg. you're writing a whole book about James Brown's dance routine to The Payback and there are seven books on it already). Most people will buy several books on the same subject if they like that subject. You don't just buy one cookbook or one book on the Beatles, etc.In fact, I'd look at competing books to see how successful they are as a clue to how popular the subject is — if there are no popular ones already, it could mean no one is really interested in that topic/band.

  14. Seriously the most interesting might be the Thin Lizzy Vanabounds of the Western World…a black Irish man song writer a hard rock band taht became Europes highest grossing live act in the era of Zepilin and the Stones and a story that brings beat poetry Hendrix and the beginning of metal all together with the road crew that did The Pogues and u2 no brainer ART the best drummer in the world alive topday with a tragic Rimbauesque poet. Loved by Slash The Beasties and Rick Rubin sampled Phils Lynotts bass for Run DMC win win

  15. Anon 6:01PM – staggering claim:Thin Lizzy … "a hard rock band taht became Europes highest grossing live act in the era of Zepilin and the Stones"was that some alternative universe?

  16. Anon 6:01PM – staggering claim:Thin Lizzy … "a hard rock band taht became Europes highest grossing live act in the era of Zepilin and the Stones"was that some alternative universe?Actually toward the end of the '70s Lizzy was selling out multiple nights at Wembley and the Hammersmith Odeon in London, and touring big halls and arenas all over Europe. The Stones weren't even on the road then (after their '78 US tour) and Zep didn't tour in '78 and '79, so the claim has merit.

  17. My wants:- Psychocandy- My Life in the Bush of Ghosts- Damaged- The Shape of Punk to Come- Laughing Stock- Close to the Edge- Pacific Ocean BlueI don't know how good these proposals are, in actuality, though

  18. DB

    The single REGGAE entry I nearly wrote a proposal for, but really glad someone else did- HEART OF THE CONGOS! please make that happen

  19. @ 11:33 Anonymous said…Whoever picked Junie Morrison's When We Do, you get props just for knowing about that record.A certainty to make the final list – after all, what you need is a unique selling point, and 'you don't know this album, but you'll love it anyway' is a good 'un.

  20. Classic comments section…Also, interesting how some of the Amazon reviews of the latest Talking Heads one confirmed what some of these comments are saying-"The book contains little that most Talking Heads fans wouldn't already know; none of the album's principle players are spoken to (indeed are hardly discussed)… "Waterman actually went to the trouble of extensively researching his beloved subject, and the world of rock n' pop music writing is all the better for his efforts. Sadly, Talking Heads fans have been short-changed by Lethem's too-clever-by-half-assed approach.""I like a lot of detail about the recordings, the studio, the songs evolutions, the bands pre and post history, influences the casual fan (or even rabid fan) might have missed, and I am not one to skip through a technical discussion of old analog recording technology or the number of tracks used for bass on a given song! Some authors of this series prefer to talk solely about their relationship with the record, and this is one of them. There's a lot of "boy in the room" drivel. There's a lot of discussion about stuff which is at best tangential to the record. Very very few interesting factoids are slipped in."

  21. People review the book they want to read, not the book in front of them, and it's disappointing that books like the John Darnielle Black Sabbath book and the Talking Heads book take flack and get 1-star reviews on amazon because someone wants studio details but can't recognize a far more interesting–sometimes GREAT–piece of music writing right in front of their faces. Which is obviously the case of the reviewer talking about Talking Heads above. If the 33 1/3 folks wanted a cookie cutter here's-the-album-and-how-it-was-made approach, I'm sure they could do that (though I doubt it would have endured this long), but they've chosen a more diverse and interesting path.Meh, good for them… And good for us.

  22. >>>People review the book they want to read, not the book in front of them<<<I think in the Talking Heads book's case, it helps if you know and like Lethem's work. If you're a fan of Lethem you'll probably really like the book. If you're a Talking Heads' fan who doesn't know who is he, then I suspect it will be disappointing, because you're going to be like, who is this guy? Why isn't there more about the album?>>>can't recognize a far more interesting–sometimes GREAT–piece of music writing right in front of their faces.<<<I think there are only so many times you can blame the readers though. I think this has come up enough times now with the 33 1/3 series that it begs the question, are there just a load of really stupid readers who don't "get" it? Or are a lot of these readers making valid suggestions and sharing valid opinions on what the series should/could offer? >>>they've chosen a more diverse and interesting path.<<<I definitely agree that it's great there are so many approaches, but I think readers do expect a certain minimum amount of coverage of the album the book is named after. I can understand why some people are annoyed if the book hardly covers the album it's named after.

  23. XTC Skylarking, yeah! very interesting. Todd Rundgren looking at a computerscreen while Partridge is doing his Dear God after Todd has done a guide vocal… I am Dutch, my English is too bad… but my fingers and brain starts working right away…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: