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1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die (1001 Must Before You Die) [Paperback]

Robert Dimery
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)

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Book Description

4 Oct 2010 1001 Must Before You Die

Get ready for the songs that will change your life.

Put on your headphones, sit back, and let 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die guide you through nearly a century of music.

It will bring you an inspiring selection of some of the greatest recordings ever made, and classics which make up the foundation of popular music.

From Tin Pan Alley to the Brill Building, from Bob Dylan to Kurt Cobain, from Joni Mitchell to Amy Winehouse, gifted songwriters have crafted a cherished body of music that has become part of our lives.

Imagine the Fifties without the magical clamour of ''Hound Dog'', the seventies without the anthemic ''Le Freak'' and ''Anarchy in the UK'', or the Noughties without the leftfield pop music of ''Toxic'' or ''Crazy''.

This music mirrors the times, reflecting society at large, mapping our own highs and lows, helping us forget our problems and dance til dawn.

Each entry in this wonderfully browsable book tells the story of a great song. Find out:

  • What inspired the songwriter
  • What makes the track so enduring
  • Which songs it influenced in turn
  • Which cover version to listen out for (or avoid!)

You'll also pick up a wealth of trivia along the way. Whose gravestone inspired Phil Spectorís first hit? And when did Christina Aguilera join forces with the Moon People? Read on and find out.

If you love your music, you need 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die in your life.

Product details

  • Paperback: 960 pages
  • Publisher: Cassell Illustrated (4 Oct 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844036847
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844036844
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 5.6 x 20.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 175,250 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Book Description

An inspiring selection of the most iconic songs ever released, covering all the genres for nearly a century of memorable music. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Robert Dimery is a freelance writer and editor who has worked on Tony Wilson's 24 Hour Party People, Pump Up the Volume: A History of House, and Breaking into Heaven: The Rise and Fall of the Stone Roses, plus countless other popular music publications. He has also contributed to books on classic albums and classic singles, and has worked for a variety of magazines, including London Time Out and Vogue.

Tony Visconti is an American record producer and musician. He has worked with a wide range of notable artists, including The Moody Blues, T Rex, Thin Lizzy, Sparks, Kristeen Young, Morrissey and especially David Bowie, whose albums he has produced since Space Oddity to Reality.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely worth a look 4 Jan 2011
By Dj Pike
This was a surprise Christmas present for me, but a very welcome one. The soundtrack to Christmas evening therefore (once I got a chance to read some of the book) was murmurings of agreement, interspersed with 'you must be joking!' from time to time, as I assessed the suitability for inclusion of each song presented in the book. Of course, very few people are likely to agree with every entry in a book like this and it therefore provides a starting point for some debate.

However, the main reasons the book works for me lies in its' presentation - 1 or 2 songs to a page, a short piece of text for every song that provides some background and history, a picture of the record sleeve for many of the songs, and larger full page photos of selected featured artists. Also because the songs are listed chronologically, the earliest included song is Enrico Caruso's 'O sole mio' from 1916 and the latest being three selected tunes from 2010, the book provides a kind of history of popular music through much of the 20th Century and beyond albeit a naturally incomplete and rather selective one (by selective I mean the focus on hand-picked individual songs, not particularly selective in terms of the consideration of different genres of 'popular music', which I thought was quite reasonable).

At this point I have to be honest and say that I have never heard some of the songs featured although I was aware of their existence; whilst I was completely unaware of quite a few others prior to reading this book. But for me these were not negative points, and I fully intend to seek out quite a few of the 'unknown' songs.

The book concludes with a more comprehensive '10,001 songs you must hear' presented in list form only (alphabetically by artist).
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1000 toons to move briskly about to 14 Jun 2011
Being a kid of the 60/70/80's I naturally have every song of those eras ingrained in my head, leaving little room for important stuff like grown-up work. I pounced on this book with glee and found many gems, plus countless songs I haven't heard but will try to find. Most of the latter are modern ...i.e post 1980's. The compilers of this haven't gone down the 'greatest hits' path, thank God. Nor have they gone for anorak stuff that only 1% of the population will recognise. They walk the tightrope between pop and rock, punk and prog with aplomb. I was equally delighted to find 'Wonderous Stories' (Yes) as I was with 'Gloria' (Patti Smith). Duffy, REM, Stones, the Who, Waterboys, all good stuff. And for New Zealanders, Weather with you' (Crowded House) and curiously Pokarekare. Of course I would have picked different songs from a few of my favouriate artists like Springsteen, Green Day or Beatles but that doesn't matter. Summing up? I only review books on here that I reccomend you buy. This is a book for dipping into, not reading cover to cover (it's too weighty a tome for that anyway). And those 60's and 70's songs...groovy man!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book 29 Dec 2010
If you'd like to learn something about modern music through all the genres without getting bored, THIS is the book for you!
Good criticism, nice layout, and remarkable affectedness in the tons of hits proposed in all this book (even the ones listed in the final 10'001 songs).
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating 28 Sep 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Sure, there are a few things you might disagree with, but that is the nature of such books.

This book, YouTube and I will be spending many evenings together.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars not enough time 7 Mar 2014
By H Root
The dear lady wife Dorothy has found out that I have been having an affair with a better proportioned woman next door. After an incident with the bread knife, I have only got hours to live. Can someone please suggest maybe 10 or 15 songs that i need to download before I meet my maker (or old nick himself) ?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1001 Songs you must hear before you die 16 Sep 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the sort of book I like to look at and see how many of the songs I have actually heard! I found that I had heard the majority in the 50's and 60's but as the years went on, I'd heard less and less! I enjoyed reading the background to the songs and was surprised with some of the stories. I found some of his choices strange, but was pleased to see 'Sally go round the roses' by the Jaynettes. I bought this in the 60's and loved it. If you want a book to relive your younger days, musically, then this is the book to buy.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top book for engaging conversation..... 23 Aug 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Recently struggled to take this HEAVY book on holiday to see which songs I had or at least heard. This is where the trouble began. Everyone who looked at the book had an opinion about which songs were in there, which were favourites, which brought back memories and which they didn't like. Everyone that browsed the book wanted it and as a result mine is now dog-eared and looking the worse for wear.

Of course any book like this is subject to the authors opinions and people need to understand this. However, the content is broad and most songs are fine choices. I now have the dilemma of looking for the missing songs from my collection. Fortunately YOUTUBE seems to have samples of most them.

Brilliant for dipping in and out of.

Maybe someone will buy me the new version and it will include which songs have been replaced since the last printing. Then I won't have to manually trawl through the index ticking them off as I go.......
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
Myhisband loves this book and is working his way through the music!
I have ordered anothe one for a friend.
Published 2 months ago by Marion Leeson
2.0 out of 5 stars Very poor
I thought there would be more up to date songs in the book.The songs were to old and didn't give me the information I wanted
Published 2 months ago by A.J.REED
5.0 out of 5 stars impossible to put down........
simply tons of information - and gives you great ideas about filling in the gaps in your music collection. Cross-refencences other influential tracks and also great photos. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Scilly Helen
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed bag
Got the book for Christmas and was delighted, there is some brilliant stuff in there that I didn't know and that has been fantastic discovering. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Joost
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Buy
Highly reccomended, brilliant value for money and a "must have" for any music fan.
Have browsed this every day since purchase.
Published 3 months ago by brian richards
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read!
Bought this for a christmas pressie and almost didn't pass it on! It makes enthralling reading and although most people would quibble about the content some of my very favourites... Read more
Published 3 months ago by washydoggy
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent prompt delivery
I ordered this late as Christmas was approaching and was concerned that it would not arrive in time for Christmas. But it did, with days to spare. I was very grateful. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Tammy
5.0 out of 5 stars good stocking filler that I am sure my son will love
good price, hopefully a good read that will be enjoyed by my son as a stocking filler - unusual concept
Published 5 months ago by jenny lowish
4.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting book.
I enjoyed reading this book. Very informative. I have many of the songs already in my collection but I'll probably be dead by the time I get to hear the lot!
Published 12 months ago by Bookworm
1.0 out of 5 stars Should be 1001 Songs to Avoid Before You Die
Well not quiet, but at least half of them should be. Very disappointed with some of the selections here. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Lester Conway
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