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Winner of the Oregon Book Award for General Nonfiction and Los Angeles Times bestseller
"It makes good music sound better."--Janet Maslin in The New York Times
"A fascinating look into the West Coast recording studio scene of the '60s and the inside story of the music you heard on the radio. If you always assumed the musicians you listened to were the same people you saw onstage, you are in for a big surprise!"--Dusty Street, host of Classic Vinyl on Sirius XM Satellite Radio
If you were a fan of popular music in the 1960s and early '70s, you were a fan of the Wrecking Crew--whether you knew it or not.
On hit record after hit record by everyone from the Byrds, the Beach Boys, and the Monkees to the Grass Roots, the 5th Dimension, Sonny & Cher, and Simon & Garfunkel, this collection of West Coast studio musicians from diverse backgrounds established themselves in Los Angeles, California as the driving sound of pop music--sometimes over the objection of actual band members forced to make way for Wrecking Crew members. Industry insider Kent Hartman tells the dramatic, definitive story of the musicians who forged a reputation throughout the business as the secret weapons behind the top recording stars.
Mining invaluable interviews, the author follows the careers of such session masters as drummer Hal Blaine and keyboardist Larry Knechtel, as well as trailblazing bassist Carol Kaye--the only female in the bunch--who went on to play in thousands of recording sessions in this rock history. Readers will discover the Wrecking Crew members who would forge careers in their own right, including Glen Campbell and Leon Russell, and learn of the relationship between the Crew and such legends as Phil Spector and Jimmy Webb. Hartman also takes us inside the studio for the legendary sessions that gave us Pet Sounds, Bridge Over Troubled Water, and the rock classic "Layla," which Wrecking Crew drummer Jim Gordon cowrote with Eric Clapton for Derek and the Dominos. And the author recounts priceless scenes such as Mike Nesmith of the Monkees facing off with studio head Don Kirshner, Grass Roots lead guitarist (and future star of The Office) Creed Bratton getting fired from the group, and Michel Rubini unseating Frank Sinatra's pianist for the session in which the iconic singer improvised the hit-making ending to "Strangers in the Night."
The Wrecking Crew tells the collective, behind-the-scenes stories of the artists who dominated Top 40 radio during the most exciting time in American popular culture.
|Title||:||The Wrecking Crew: The Inside Story of Rock and Roll's Best-Kept Secret|
|Number of Pages||:||292 pages|
June 08, 2012
I have a friend who was in school in Poland when the Soviet Union collapsed. Soon after, his school received new textbooks. In those new textbooks was a completely new and different retelling of history. Suddenly, overnight, everything that had happened in the 20th century was completely differen...
May 04, 2012
Having read the original magazine article (American Heritage, 2007) and watched the film documentary, I was expecting to enjoy this. Even though different people were highlighted to some extent than in the film, it was still just a very fun read, especially for someone who listened to nearly ever...
June 16, 2012
Pedestrian bit of blown-up magazine journalism intended to celebrate a talented, rotating collection of studio musicians who played on many of the hit singles that emerged from Los Angeles in the 1960s and 1970s. Hartman means well but neither writes well nor benefits much from his research oppor...
September 21, 2012
Even for a Baby-Boomer Music-Slut like myself, this was a little weak. The author offers up lots of gee-whiz and aw-shucks sentiments and stories, but fails to dig much deeper.
That being said, we're still talking about the studio musicians behind virtually every pop/rock record to come out of LA...
April 22, 2017
Fascinating and detailed romp through the emergence of the American rock and roll music business in Los Angeles, arguably the epicenter of Pop/Top 40 hit machine. The Wrecking Crew were the unsung heroes of the emergence of rock. They were the studio musicians who brought the music to life and ga...
August 04, 2017
Although the writing style is little bit high school, the stories contained within were interesting. I picked this up after seeing the documentary on Netflix about the legendary players behind all the hit records. For some reason, the film was enjoyable but not as good as I had hoped it would be....
August 23, 2017
"The Wrecking Crew" by Kent Hartman is a nice overview of the studio musicians who made the pop and rock music we loved from Los Angeles in the 1960's and early 70's. Unless you were "in the know" at the time you had no idea that these artists were responsible for bringing the hits of the Byrds,...
November 08, 2015
Hi, my name is Don and I'm a music nerd. If you grew up listening to rock and roll in "The Sixties" (I don't like that term it is disingenuous) and you listened to 45 RPM records this is the book for you. It speaks to those of us who ran down to the corner record store on Saturday to buy the newe...
January 22, 2015
“The Wrecking Crew” by Kent Hartman, published by Thomas Dunne Books.
Category – Media/Music Publication Date – May 21, 2013
If you liked the music of the 60’s and 70’s this is a must read for you. If I told you that groups such as The Beach Boys, The Union Gap, The Monkees, and many more did not d...
August 29, 2012
I heard the author of this book, Kent Hartman, being interviewed on KQRS radio on the way to work one morning a few months ago and he was so interesting and so knowledgeable it made for a great interview. I made a mental note to read the book. I found a $2 copy at a used book sale (not bad, it wa...