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Rock Formations: Categorical Answers to How Band Names Were Formed Paperback – 30 Nov 2005

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Cidermill Books; 1 edition (30 Nov. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0974848352
  • ISBN-13: 978-0974848358
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 14 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,756,641 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By An Enthusiast on 25 Oct. 2006
Format: Paperback
And here I got the answer. A very well reseached guide to how band names were formed. Not the least bit geographical!

This will interest the pop enthusiast as well as the curious, like me.

Covers the whole spectrum of popular music.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 8 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Did you know 750 pounds is about 53 stones? 31 Mar. 2005
By Gerry Wang - Published on
Format: Paperback
I know what you're thinking: Great. Another rock trivia book. More information I'll never use crammed into my noggin. Are these things cranked out by robots or what? To be honest, my first impression was, "Yeah, I could use a really absorbent coaster."

But then I started to read it, and golly gosh darn if I didn't love it. After only a few sections I was smiling and saying, "Whoa!", "What?!", and "You're kidding me!". I also blurted out a couple of "No ways!" which is what ultimately got me kicked out of Denny's. Kid Rock and Hootie & the Blowfish were named by people making a passing comment? It's so obvious and yet I never put it together!

Until now that is! Yeah, boy, this book rocks. It's not just about rock bands either. There's soul, hip-hop, blues, jazz, country & western and more -- and the organization is pretty cool, too. Instead of the same old same old, it takes bands that were named from similar themes and throws them together so you get to see how many bands were named after sex organs, which bands were named after book titles and why some bands which seem to have nonsensical names actually have nonsensical names. You still need the index though because once in a while you'll wake up in a cold sweat and say, "Hendrix!" and the index is the best way to find it and then go back to sleep.

Actually, some bands aren't listed but there are plenty of bands to get the dirt on. There's also a fair amount of English band trivia sprinkled throughout so those of you that know the Flowerpot Men, Pink Fairies or Blancmange shall not go wanting.

Overall, "Rock Formations" is a well-written, easy reading book. It's definitely a nice companion for the afternoon DJ who needs to stump the listeners once in a while or for the guy who needs to fill every last brain cranny with even more rock trivia. After reading this book my brain is certainly running low on crannies and there aren't many nooks left, either.

A great book and the price is reasonable. I give it a hearty thumbs up, and now I need to look up again which band formed from the backing members of the Beach Boys....."Sweet!"
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A Great Gift for the Music Enthusiast 9 Aug. 2005
By Mi Young Song - Published on
Format: Paperback
I bought this book for my brother who is a music buff and an amateur musician. He was thrilled with the gift and proceeded to read the book in its entirety in a matter of days. Of course I was pleased he enjoyed the book and thought enough of it to put it on his coffee table for guests to peruse.

Since we live close to one another I would start thumbing through the book whenever I would come over to watch sports or to babysit his kids. What I liked most about it is that it is organized in such a way that makes it a fun and easy read. Other books of this kind read more like a dictionary with a slew of entries one after another that don't share anything in common. For example, in Rock Formations there is a chapter called "Early Impressions" that covers bands that took their names from incidents in their childhood pasts like Lynyrd Skynyrd (I always thought it had something to with flying, which made the name cruelly ironic). I actually started reading in one of the middle chapters and jumped around to different chapters until I had read the entire book.

As a non-musician and an average music fan, I liked the fact that the entries were worded like stories and didn't use a lot of musical jargon. I'm a big fan of 80's music so there were a lot of entries that I really enjoyed such as Foreigner, The Police, Talking Heads, Tears For Fears, etc. I believe the author is British, which explains the coverage of British groups that were popular in the 80's. My brother has more eclectic taste in music so he appreciated the "non-Rock" entries (i.e. Reggae, Rap, R&B).

I would definitely recommend this book for any music fan. It's a fun book to read and you'll probably yourself jumping around chapters as I did. I've also won a few friendly wagers with some friends that have heard myths and rumors about band names, although I'm not recommending this book as an instrument for gambling!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Fun Read 31 May 2005
By John R. Bolton - Published on
Format: Paperback
Rock Formations

As someone whose main reading material are biographies of musicians and books associated with music, I was curious about this book.

The author has done a vast amount of research for this book and it is really entertaining and convenient to have all this information in one place. I could not find any errors and the only thing I had a problem with was a comment made about a soccer team in the entry for the band Geordie, you would have to be a soccer fan to understand.

There were a lot of entries that I was familiar with but had not stored the information so it was fun to read all this information in one place. Some of the entries were new to me, I never could figure out The Jesus and Mary Chain for instance, but all that and a lot more is here.

It is not one of those books that you can read in one sitting but it makes a nice coffee break read for the rock fan.

All in all a fine book lots of interesting trivia and very well researched and presented.

Maybe there will be a volume 2 as the are a lot of band names to draw upon, even an entry for Doll By Doll next time.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Time to Add This One to Your Rock Library 6 July 2005
By J. D. Plotner - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book "Rock Formations" is an excellent example of something that should be out there in the literal world and is put together with the fan in mind to boot. There is information on "The Beatles" formation and what other famous band influenced them to create their name. You can find out which one of the "The Beach Boys" helped give a certain duo their name. If there is ever an example of an item to put on a Christmas list of "Things the Music Fan Might Enjoy" this is it! This book is a great insight to the way the creative minds of these artists think. It made me think.

If you ever wondered where a band like "Led Zeppelin" got their name from and what member of "THE WHO" helped to define it, well it's all here, from "Air Supply" to "Frank Zappa" This is one of those books you'll find yourself referencing for years to come. Where did "2PAC" get that name from? You'll have to read this book to find out. There are new artists appearing all the time. I hope there are many revisions to come. In three words "It Totally Rocks!" and is a "Must Have"!
Warning/Disclaimer: A Book For All Seasons! 3 Jan. 2007
By Bill Bailey - Published on
Format: Paperback
I was fortunate enough to obtain a signed edition of the book. Such graciousness only hints at the wealth of information Wilson provides to music lovers of all stripes. From genre expert to casual listener, from rock aficionado to generalist, this book provides for hours of reading and an equal amount of chat with friends. After testing your own knowledge, Rock Formations provides a launching pad for a good night of trivia.

The great strength of this book is that it is a casual read; as Wilson notes in the somewhat dauntingly titled "Warning/Disclaimer": "the purpose of this book is to inform and entertain." On both counts it succeeds. It covers such a range of bands, and does so in such an engaging way, that readers are rewarded on first and subsequent readings. And the writing style is succinct without being dry. Sprinkled throughout are revelations that mix reflection with a smile.

Wilson clearly labored for close to a decade on this work. And his interest is our reward. Affordably priced and nicely presented, one hopes that Wilson's book inspires a follow-up. I will leave the `moniker' and focus of that text to the author. He seems full well capable of dealing with both exigencies.
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