Backstage Passes & Backstabbing Bastards: Memoirs of a Rock 'n' Roll Survivor

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Hal Leonard Corporation, 2008 - Biography & Autobiography - 327 pages
Al Kooper began his professional career in 1958 at the age of fourteen. Kooper's quirky keyboard style was a seminal force in popularizing the Hammond B3 organ as a major voice in rock music. Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones, B.B. King, George Harrison, The Who, Trisha Yearwood, and a plethora of other artists have benefited from having Kooper perform on their albums and singles. Backstage Passes & Backstabbing Bastards, Kooper's insightful and amusing autobiography, puts you in the passenger seat as you cruise the entire history of rock 'n roll as well as the various cultural landmarks and idiosyncrasies of the '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, and '90s.

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Kooper-musician, composer, and performer-had the knack of always being in the right place at the right time, which allowed him to be involved in many of rock's great moments from the 1960s on. He ... Read full review

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I first became aware of Al Kooper with the release of Blood Sweat and Tears' first album, which was largely dominated by his songs and performances. This book covers the shenanigans behind its release, and his subsequent sacking (by his own band!) as well as many more strange and amazing events in his roller-coaster career. Al was both a fly on the wall at some seminal events in rock history, as well as an active participant who helped shape our pop landscape. Al has strong views which he expresses in the book about making music and the nature of collaboration. This is not just a name-dropping exercise, but a treatise on how to survive (but perhaps not flourish) in the tough world of modern music. As a musician, I would liked to have seen more about the nature of his musical influences, but just recounting the events is enough to fill up one book. 

Selected pages


Basics Moving to Queens The Royal Teens Gene Pitney College This Diamond Ring
The Year of Living Famously Bob Dylan and Life as a Session Musician
The Blues Project Blonde on Blonde Judy Collins Joni Mitchell a Nervous Breakdown California Groupies Brian Wilson Monterey Pop and Sheepish ...
Blood Sweat Tears Kooper Was a Brother to the Band
AR at Columbia Records Super Session Mike Bloomfield Live at the Filmore Bill Graham Norman Rockwell The Rolling Stones and the First Solo Al...
Scoring a Film Losing a Wife Elton John Addiction Touring Deep Purple New Morning Smokey Robinson Milton Berle and Battles with Clive
Atlanta Sounds of the South Records Lynyrd Skynyrd a Move to LA Dustin Hoffman a Million Dollars and Speed in My Soda
London Eddie The Hot Rods David Essex George Harrison Texas Floods SRV Joe Ely and Los Angeles
Living Small Travels with Dylan Championship Wrestling AR at PolyGram Richard Thompson the St Regis Fiasco and the FourDay Turnaround
Crime Story Michael Mann John Waters BB King Convention Hopping and Finally Leaving Los Angeles
Nashville Thelonious Monster Green on Red Selling Jimis Strat Joe Walsh Ray Charles and Stephen Kings Band
The Greening of Nashville Doctor Al Boston Berklee the New Old Book and Thats All He Wrote
Trials Tribulations and a Soulful Aggregation
Selected Discography

The Tubes Nils Lofgren Rick Nelson Life in ModernDay Rome Orgies Nitrous Oxide and Leaving Amerika

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