The People's Songs: The Story of Modern Britain in 50 Records

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9780091946845: The People's Songs: The Story of Modern Britain in 50 Records

These are the songs that have been listened to, laughed to, loved to, and labored to, as well as downed tools and danced to. Covering the last seven decades, Stuart Maconie looks at the songs that have been the soundtracks for changing times, and have--just sometimes--changed the way listeners feel. Beginning with Vera Lynn's "We'll Meet Again," a song that reassured a nation parted from their loved ones by the turmoil of war, and culminating with the manic energy of "Bonkers," Dizzee Rascal's anthem for the push and rush of the 21st century inner city, "The People's Songs" takes a tour of the UK's pop music, and asks what it means to a Briton.The story of modern Britain is told chronologically over 50 chapters, through the records that listened to and loved during the dramatic and kaleidoscopic period from World War II to the present day. This is not a rock critique about the 50 greatest tracks ever recorded. Rather, it is a celebration of songs that tell us something about how Britons have felt about things in their lives down the eras--work, war, class, leisure, race, family, drugs, sex, patriotism, and more. In times of prosperity or poverty, this is the music that inspired haircuts and dance crazes, but also protest and social change. The companion to Stuart Maconie's landmark Radio 2 series, "The People's Songs" shows the power of "cheap" pop music, - one of Britain's greatest exports. These are the songs people have worked to and partied to, and grown up and grown old to--from "A Whiter Shade of Pale" to "Rehab," "She Loves You" to "Star Man," and "Dedicated Follower of Fashion" to "Radio Ga Ga."

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Product Description:

In "The People's Music," Stuart Maconie argues that what we call pop music has a defiant, unsanctioned concept at its heart: the ability to speak to people, to affect people, to transform their lives. This book tells the story of modern Britain via the records that soundtracked this dramatic and kaleidoscopic period. The story is told chronologically over 50 linked chapters. At the heart of each is one emblematic song that is discussed fully. These are not the greatest songs ever recorded. But the records tell us something about how we feel and have felt about work, war, class, leisure, race, family, sport, drugs, sex, spirituality, politics, patriotism and more. These are the songs that people listened to, laughed to, loved to and laboured to, as well as danced to -- from Telstar to Y Viva Espana, Bluebirds Over the White Cliffs of Dover to Ghost Town, Wham Rap to A Whiter Shade of Pale, Two Tribes to My Girl Lollipop, God Save the Queen to Blue Monday, Do They Know its Xmas to Candle in the Wind.

Review:

"One of the most insightful and purely readable books on pop music I think I have ever encountered" -- Marcus Berkmann Daily Mail "An unequivocal pleasure and highly recommended" -- Marcus Berkmann Daily Mail "The blend of research and conjecture is impressive" -- Will Hodgkinson The Times "Maconie succeeds in being at once elegant and approachable, definititive but also self-deprecating" Guardian "A fine writer: sharp, funny, tender and thoughtful" Spectator

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Book Description 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 153mm x 234mm x 32mm. Paperback. When the mode of the music changes, the walls of the city shake. (Plato). Extraordinary how potent cheap music is. (Noel Coward). In The People's Songs, Stuart Maconie argues that what we .Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 432 pages. 0.624. Bookseller Inventory # 9780091946845

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Book Description 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 153mm x 234mm x 32mm. Paperback. When the mode of the music changes, the walls of the city shake. (Plato). Extraordinary how potent cheap music is. (Noel Coward). In The People's Songs, Stuart Maconie argues .Shipping may be from our Sydney, NSW warehouse or from our UK or US warehouse, depending on stock availability. 432 pages. 0.624. Bookseller Inventory # 9780091946845

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