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The Complete Book of Doo-wop Paperback – Feb 2000


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Paperback, Feb 2000
£74.75 £35.00



Product details

  • Paperback: 500 pages
  • Publisher: KP Books; 2nd edition (Feb 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0873418298
  • ISBN-13: 978-0873418294
  • Product Dimensions: 27.8 x 21.6 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,723,242 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 9 July 1998
Format: Paperback
tHIS BOOK IS CLEARLY ONE OF THE SOURCE DOCUMENTS THAT ANYONE WHO SERIOUSLY CONSIDERS ROCK N ROLL TO BE A UNIQUE AMERICAN ART FORM OF THE LATTER PART OF THE 20TH CENTURY.
tHOUGH NOT THE BEST OF ITS TYPE, IT RANKS CLEARLY IN THE TOP 10.
THE PREMISE OF THE TITLE, THAT DOO WOP MUSIC (OR BETTER REFERRED TO AS R&B GROUP HARMONY MUSIC) IS FORGOTTEN BY TOO MANY ROCK AND ROLL "HISTORIANSD" IS FULLY CORRECT. tHIS MUSIC IS THE ESSENCE OF ROCK N ROLL IN ITS PUREST FORM....LONG BEFORE THE SO CALLED GIANTS OF THE MUSIC INDUSTRY CANNED AND PACKAGED, AND IN SOME WAYS DESTROYED, THIS PURE PRODUCT. TO SING OR RECORD DOO WOP MUSIC, YOU DID NOT NEED THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS WORTH OF EQUIPMENT, AND TENS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS WORTH OF STUDIO TIME. ALL THAT WAS NEEDED WAS 4 OR 4 HONEST VOICES AND MAYBE 3 OR FOUR INSTRUMENTS IN THE BACKGROUND.
DO NOT EXPECT TO FIND INFORMATION ABOUT PAT BOONE OR OTHER RIP OFF ARTISTS IN THIS BOOK....WHILE WHITE GROUPS WHO SAND SANITIZED VERSIONS OF BALCK DOO WOP SONGS MAY BE INCLUDED, THE REAL STARS OF THIS BOOK ARE THE UNKNOWN BLACK ARTISTS WHOSE MUSIC WAS STOLEN FROM THEM. FOR FANS OF SUCH CLASSIC GROUPS LIKE THE MOONGLOWS, PLATTERS, DUBS AND SHELLS, THERE IS GOOD INFORMATION IN THIS BOOK. FOR THOSE INTERESTED IN THE MORE OBSCURE AND ESOTERIC GROUPS AND RECORDING (E. G., CAN'T HELP LOVIN THAT GIRL OF MINE - THE HIDE-A-WAYS, GET YOURSELF ANOTHER FOOL - THE TEMPOTONES, HEARTS DESIRE - THE AVALONS) YOU'LL FIND USEFUL INFORMATION HERE TOO.
THE BOOK CONTAINS SOME ERRORS WHICH ONE HOPES WILL BE CORRECTED IN LATER EDITIONS, BUT THESE DO NOT DETRACT FROM THE BASIC VALUE OF THE BOOK.
IT MAY BE USED BY THE NOVICE AS WELL AS THE HARDCORE COLLECTOR, THOUGH THE LATTER WILL UNDOUBTABLE FIND ITS FLAWS.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 21 reviews
36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
Worth getting for songography 13 Feb 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book mainly has three distinct parts: text, "Best 500", and songography. The text part is 129 pages about various topics involving doo-wop music. The authors do a decent job of defining doo-wop and associating the music with the meaningful events of its era. I especially liked the chapter on the influence of "The Personality Deejays." However, that chapter as well as much of the text of this book is New York City focused and ignores the rest of the country. The second part of the book is a list of the authors' choices for the best 500 doo-wop recordings of all-time. This list is, of course, very subjective. To my delight, I concurred with the majority of their selections. I would have preferred seeing a list of the 500 best selling doo-wop recordings of all-time or a list of the doo-wop songs that reached #1. The third part of the book is an extensive songography listing over 25,000 doo-wop recordings by artist including the title, lable and number, and year. If you know the group name, it's usually easy to locate the song you want. One caveat is that the authors classified the artists by exactly what was written on the record lable. Thus you may sometimes find multiple artist headings for the same group. For example instead of a single heading for "Lee Andrews and the Hearts", you will have to search through "Andrews, Lee (bb the Hearts)", "Hearts (aka Lee Andrews & the Hearts", "Hearts (Lee Andrews & the)", and "Hearts (Lee Andrews & the) (as Lee Andrews)". That said, the songography by itself is worth the price of the book if you are into doo-wop music.
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Indispensible reference book for the avid collector 17 May 2004
By Paul Tognetti - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Due to the popularity of T.J. Lubinsky's "American Soundtrack" series on PBS there has been renewed interest in the music we call "doo wop". As an avid collector of 45's, I became interested in the genre in the late 1980's. Collectable Records had reissued hundreds and hundreds of doo wop records.
There was just one problem. There were simply no reference books available to help me distinguish the great stuff from the mediocre or bad. In 1992, the original incarnation of this book entitled "Doo Wop: The Forgotten Third of Rock and Roll" was issued. It was a quite literally a godsend. It was very apparent that the authors loved their subject matter and I referred to this book constantly.
In 2000, Dr. Anthony Gribin and Dr. Matthew Schiff released the updated version of their book. Now entitled "The Complete Book of Doo-Wop", this expanded version includes a complete "songography" of just about every doo-wop 45 rpm record ever made. The list is arranged alphabetically by artist and includes song title (both A & B sides), year of issue and record label and number. All these years later I still find myself referring to this on a regular basis. But the most useful portion of the book for me is the list of the "Best 1000 Doo-Wop Songs." This list is what really helps one seperate the wheat from the chaff. And while one may quibble about individual entries on that list, I have found it to be remarkably accurate over the years. It is what really helped turn me on to the music of artists like the Harptones, the Cardinals and the Ravens to name just to name a few. One of my favorite features in the updated version of the book is a list of "100 Recommended Pre-Doo-Wop Recordings". On this list you will find music by such artists as the Four Vagabonds, the Deep River Boys and the Boswell Sisters. This is all great stuff and definitely worth a listen. Finally, there are dozens of wonderful photographs, a doo-wop aptitude test, doo-wop crossword puzzles and so much more. For any collector of American popular music this book should be an essential part of your library. Highly recommended.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
A comprehensive book everyone who likes doo wop should have 7 Mar 2001
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In recent years, due primarily to the PBS series on Doo Wop, this musical genre is being rediscovered. Finally, there is a comprehensive book on the who's, why's and what's of the definitive music of the 50's and early 60's.
Although this book sometimes over-emphasizes the specific sounds of the music (shoop de doop etc.) and spends too much time on certain groups, it is a great (and relatively inexpensive) resource for song titles. I especially liked the chapter on song styles from different parts of the country.
If it has a weakness, it isn't as comprehensive a guide on specific groups as is Jay Warner's book on singing groups. Still, all in all it is an excellent resource guide and a book any Doo Wop afficianado should have in a collection.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
the definitive book on doo wop 16 Dec 2003
By popular culture lover - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The authors of this book both turned out to be Ph.D's, so that pretty much dispels the notion that rock n' roll was supposed to rot your brain. They share a love for old rythem and blues group harmony, and it shows. The book explains the origins and influences of doo wop (odd that the term 'doo wop' wasn't invented when this music was current). It goes into styles and typologies of doo wop, with critical appraisals. Excellent, hard-to-find photos too. The last third of the book lists exhaustive overall and group discographies. I've searched for years for books on doo wop and this one's the best.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
LONG OVERDUE!!!!! 3 Dec 1997
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I have been collecting 45's since 1965. Having been born in 1951, I was too young to remember doo-wop music. To this day, I still buy my 45's at a record store every Friday night in Warwick,
R.I. Lofgrens Records has been in business
since 1948. While I enjoyed the doo-wop that
you hear on standard oldies stations, I could never find a reliable reference book for the
local and regional doo-wop hits of that period.
I purchased Doo-Wop: The Forgotten Third of
Rock and Roll about 4 years ago. I find the
book to be right on target. It chronicles this
period better than any reference book I have found. The authors list what they feel are the Top 500 doo-wops of all-time. I would say I agree with 90% of their choices. Now I have some way to decipher what might be good or
great and what might be mediocre. There is so much stuff out there. Highly recommended!!
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