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Winner of the Oregon Book Award for General Nonfiction and Los Angeles Times bestseller "It makes good music sound better."-Janet Maslin in The New York Times "A fascinating look into the West Coast recording studio scene of the '60s and the inside story of the music you heard on the radio. If you always assumed the musicians you listened to were the same people you saw onstage, you are in for a big surprise!"-Dusty Street, host of Classic Vinyl on Sirius XM Satellite Radio If you were a fan of popular music in the 1960s and early '70s, you were a fan of the Wrecking Crew-whether you knew it or not. On hit record after hit record by everyone from the Byrds, the Beach Boys, and the Monkees to the Grass Roots, the 5th Dimension, Sonny & Cher, and Simon & Garfunkel, this collection of West Coast studio musicians from diverse backgrounds established themselves in Los Angeles, California as the driving sound of pop music-sometimes over the objection of actual band members forced to make way for Wrecking Crew members. Industry insider Kent Hartman tells the dramatic, definitive story of the musicians who forged a reputation throughout the business as the secret weapons behind the top recording stars. Mining invaluable interviews, the author follows the careers of such session masters as drummer Hal Blaine and keyboardist Larry Knechtel, as well as trailblazing bassist Carol Kaye-the only female in the bunch-who went on to play in thousands of recording sessions in this rock history. Readers will discover the Wrecking Crew members who would forge careers in their own right, including Glen Campbell and Leon Russell, and learn of the relationship between the Crew and such legends as Phil Spector and Jimmy Webb. Hartman also takes us inside the studio for the legendary sessions that gave us Pet Sounds, Bridge Over Troubled Water, and the rock classic "Layla," which Wrecking Crew drummer Jim Gordon cowrote with Eric Clapton for Derek and the Dominos. And the author recounts priceless scenes such as Mike Nesmith of the Monkees facing off with studio head Don Kirshner, Grass Roots lead guitarist (and future star of The Office) Creed Bratton getting fired from the group, and Michel Rubini unseating Frank Sinatra's pianist for the session in which the iconic singer improvised the hit-making ending to "Strangers in the Night." The Wrecking Crew tells the collective, behind-the-scenes stories of the artists who dominated Top 40 radio during the most exciting time in American popular culture.
(Book). Ever wonder what it would be like to be the most recorded musician in popular music? This updated bestselling autobiography spotlights Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee and drummer extraordinaire Hal Blaine and his remarkable life experiences. From the Sinatras to the Beach Boys, Blaine drumrolled through the'50s, '60s and '70s, driving over 40 songs to the Number One slot. His works with Phil Spector and the Wrecking Crew sessions, his touring experiences and other hitmaking pressure sessions are amusingly revealed in this rare glimpse into a golden age of music. Exclusive scrapbook photos round out this biography to provide an entertaining and educating book for musicians and fans alike. The update brings his life into the 21st century, including info on his inductions into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Musicians Hall of Fame in Nashville, dealing with Spector's infamous trials, and recently, the renewed interest in his golden era of recording with the documentary film on the Wrecking Crew and all the new wave of accocalades that followed.
The incredible details of the bold, near-disastrous first Allied airborne commando raid. Audacious to the extreme, Operation Colossus was a raid in the early, dark days of the Second World War, when Britain stood seemingly alone. After the country's defeats in western Europe in 1940, Prime Minister Winston Churchill insisted on an aggressive raiding campaign. Conducted on February 10, 1941, Operation Colossus was one such raid, meant to steal back the initiative and create as much chaos for the Axis powers as possible. However, bad luck stalked the mission, as one mishap after another seemed to foredoom the operation. In the aftermath, there were recriminations as well as accolades. Few military operations have proven as controversial.
"You never know what's going to save you." After years of dingy nightclubs and drug addiction, John Albert and his hard-luck friends certainly never expected their salvation to arrive in the form of a pastime most often associated with Mom, God, and apple pie. Wrecking Crew -- a highly unusual chronicle of recovery and redemption -- documents the transformation of a group of musicians, struggling screenwriters, and wannabe actors into a competitive band of hardballers. For over a decade, it seemed to be enough: the narcotics, gambling, whores, and aimless rebellion. But as they stumbled into their thirties, the blithe pursuit of self-destruction had simply become exhausting to these battle-scarred denizens of the L.A. counterculture. The romantic squalor of being perpetually broken-down, periodically drug-addled, and irresponsible began to lose its charm. The idea of fielding a baseball team to compete in a hard-knocks amateur league seemed merely the latest in a string of half-hearted stabs at restoring order to their ragged lives. But this escapade was different. When these men donned their team uniforms, the old obsessions started to fade and something incredible began to happen. This is the unforgettable story of the Griffith Park Pirates.
A brand-new edition of the classic thriller. Matt Helm, newly reinstated counter-agent, has a mission. He must travel to the wastes of northern Sweden and dispose of Caselius, a wraith-like operator with a genius for destruction. But amid a bewildering web of deceit woven by the enemy agent, his only ally deceased and help a thousand miles away, Helm soon realises he must track down his deadly prey alone.
From the author of the landmark bestseller What's the Matter with Kansas?, a jaw-dropping investigation of the decades of deliberate—and lucrative—conservative misrule In his previous book, Thomas Frank explained why working America votes for politicians who reserve their favors for the rich. Now, in The Wrecking Crew, Frank examines the blundering and corrupt Washington those politicians have given us. Casting his eyes from the Bush administration's final months of plunder to the earliest days of the Republican revolution, Frank describes the rise of a ruling coalition dedicated to dismantling government. But rather than cutting down the big government they claim to hate, conservatives have simply sold it off, deregulating some industries, defunding others, but always turning public policy into a private-sector bidding war. Washington itself has been remade into a golden landscape of super-wealthy suburbs and gleaming lobbyist headquarters—the wages of government-by-entrepreneurship practiced so outrageously by figures such as Jack Abramoff. It is no coincidence, Frank argues, that the same politicians who guffaw at the idea of effective government have installed a regime in which incompetence is the rule. Nor will the country easily shake off the consequences of deliberate misgovernment through the usual election remedies. Obsessed with achieving a lasting victory, conservatives have taken pains to enshrine the free market as the permanent creed of state. Stamped with Thomas Frank's audacity, analytic brilliance, and wit, The Wrecking Crew is his most revelatory work yet—and his most important.
The 388th was an all-combat crew of aerial warlords. They became military legend, scoring ruthlessly against desperate MiGs in major flight operations for seven years. Wrecking Crew is the real story of the men who fought the savage air war over Vietnam--and dared to win.

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