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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AN UNDERRATED GENRE, 13 July 2009
This review is from: A House on Fire: The Rise and Fall of Philadelphia Soul (Hardcover)
The subject of soul music from Philadelphia is one that has received little interest from music writers. I've owned and treasured Tony Cummings "The Sound Of Philadelphia" for over 30 years, so when I saw John A. Jackson's book I bought it immediately. I have to say I haven't been disappointed. Jackson's book covers the behind the scenes battles and resentments of many of the players in the story, and it explains how justified many of them are in their bitterness at being denied credit/fair payment.
Because the book was published in 2004 it covers the death of the "The Sound Of Philadelphia" right to the very end and to be honest, there isn't much new information to add in the last 5 years. I think he treats the all powerful triumvirate of Kenny Gamble/Leon Huff/Thom Bell fairly and he's interviewed many important lower profile figures who come across as refreshingly candid.
In conclusion, if you've loved the golden period of Philadelphia soul, you've got to read this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read, 12 Jun. 2011
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This review is from: A House on Fire: The Rise and Fall of Philadelphia Soul (Hardcover)
Loved this book. Well researched and very well written. A total joy from start to finish. Reading it made me want to play all the albums and tracks mentioned. In some ways a sad story but the fact that the Philadelphia sound ever happened in the first place is something to be treasured. I wish we had more music histories of this standard.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Gamble, Huff and Bell, 11 Oct. 2013
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This review is from: A House on Fire: The Rise and Fall of Philadelphia Soul (Hardcover)
Right at the start the author explains his attempts to interview Kenny Gamble, despite being told by others that he wouldn't get an one. He eventually gave up. So many of the quotes within the book are from third party sources. Having said that all of the sources are provided in extensive notes which accompany each chapter.
I found the first couple of chapters heavy going but after that the remainder of the book is extremely readable, never mind a fascinating read. The extensive notes really need to be read as you are directed to them so a bookmark is recommded in order that you can move back and forth.
I hadn't realised until I received it but this is a hardback book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars An insight into the legendary sound of Philadelphia soul, 8 May 2013
Good read with a lot of info and facts about the history of soul in Philadelphia from the early 60's through to demise of the legendary Philadelphia international records
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A House on Fire: The Rise and Fall of Philadelphia Soul
A House on Fire: The Rise and Fall of Philadelphia Soul by John A. Jackson (Hardcover - 1 Oct. 2004)
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