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March 03 , 2010

Please Please Me: Sixties British Pop, Inside Out


The Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Kinks, the Who, and numerous other groups put Britain at the center of the modern musical map. Please Please Me offers an insiders view of the British pop-music recording industry during the seminal period of 1956 to 1968, based on personal recollections, contemporary accounts, and all relevant data that situate this scene in the economic, political, and social context of postwar Britain. Author Gordon Thompson weaves issues of class, age, professional status, gender, and ethnicity into his narrative, beginning with the rise of British beat groups and the emergence of teenagers as consumers in postwar Britain, and moving into the competition between performers and the recording industry for control over the music. He interviews musicians, songwriters, music directors, and producers and engineers who worked with the best-known performers of the era. Drawing his interpretation of the processes at work during this musical revolution into a wider context, Thompson unravels the musical change and innovation of the time with an eye on understanding what traces individuals leave in the musical and recording process.

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