Popular Music in America: And The Beat Goes On

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Cengage Learning, Sep 26, 2008 - Education - 384 pages
This refreshingly current, best-selling text provides a highly readable, chronological examination of the roots and history of American popular music, from 1840 to the present. The focus is on basic music fundamentals as well as the elements of each style; the heritage and diversity of popular music; the underlying kinship among its many styles; and the evolution of popular music from minstrel show music to rap and alternative. The text’s opening chapter introduces students to the elements of popular music through a familiar musical example. The text is available with an exclusive, high-quality heritage 3-CD set that contains each selection discussed in depth in the first two thirds of the book: from the early twentieth century through the 1960s. The remaining examples may be accessed via online iTunes and Rhapsody playlists (or from the student’s music collection). When packaged with the text, the CDs are available at a substantial discount.
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The reviewer ranting about the author is probably an obsessed Michael Jackson fan himself, considering what he wrote. The book is educative and enlightening on the history of popular music in America. Although it could cover certain things in a deeper and broader fashion, it is nonetheless informative, and I acknowledge the author's work as respectable and even potentially enjoyable. I would recommend this.  

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This last review has given no credit to the author whatsoever. The author is not "hating" on Michel, or any other artist for that matter as he has portrayed him to be. Rather he has focussed much of his book on not necessarily the artist, but on the style, and as you may know, Michael, Prince and Madonna do in fact have similar styles. I for one am citing this book for a research paper comparing Mainstream music and Alternative music, and it has been very helpful, and maybe the reason that this previous review has given a negative reflection on this book is because it was not what the writer of this review was looking for in a book. Anyone will write a good review on something that they agree with, it takes a true uncorrupted critic to write an accurate review of something they completely disagree with. In short, this book compares styles quite nicely, and would be a great help for any essay comparing music styles. 

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About the author (2008)

Michael Campbell is a writer and pianist. A California native, he is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Amherst College and holds a doctorate from Peabody Conservatory, where he studied piano with Leon Fleisher. As a commercial musician, he has assisted such artists as Angela Lansbury, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Bob Hope, Redd Foxx, Ethel Merman, and Don McLean. As a concert pianist, he has performed a broad range of repertoire, including his own transcriptions of recordings by Art Tatum, Jelly Roll Morton, and other legendary jazz pianists. He also performs all of the piano selections included with this textbook.

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