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Eminent Hipsters (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 23. Oktober 2014

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"Nerdishly clever, entertainingly original and even a moving reconfiguration of the memoir format." (Bernadette McNulty Sunday Telegraph)

"Fagen, as you might expect, is an elegant and erudite writer." (John Mulvey Uncut)

"If you're a Dan fan you should read this book. If you're not a Dan fan you should read it anyway." (The Afterword)

"Part memoir, part personal dissertation, and it makes for an enjoyable, if brief, read." (Dylan Jones GQ)

"A curious little autobiographical volume by another hero of long ago, Donald Fagen, once and again of Steely Dan." (Spectator)

"Eminent Hipsters is regularly funny and insightful." (Sunderland Echo / Dorset Echo)

"I would like to be given Eminent Hipsters." (Sebastian Faulks Observer)

"An excellent, albeit slim, collection of essays about the Steely Dan singer’s formative teenage influences as "a subterranean in gestation with a real nasty cast of otherness"." (Andy Gill Independent)

"A memoir of inspired essayism and darkly comic recollection which barely touches on Steely Dan yet utterly satisfies." (Mat Snow Mojo)

"This is moaning of the highest order ― jazz moaning, you might call it ― and Fagen keeps it up for 70 brilliant, hilarious pages. For the intelligent, grumpy old music fan, only one of these books needs to be bought as a present this Christmas, and it’s not Morrissey’s." (Markus Berkmann Spectator)

"Eminent Hipsters is regularly funny and insightful…whether you know who Fagen is or not, it’s still worth anyone’s time." (Yorkshire Evening Post)

"The writing is sharp, wry and elegant, without a single wasted word." (Aidan Smith Scotland on Sunday)

"This book is a piece of pure bliss." (Anthony Quinn Guardian)

"An unalloyed joy." (Les Gofton Times Higher Education)

"Constantly surprising, and recalled with great elegance." (Financial Times)

"A terrific and easy read." (Jonathan O'Brien Sunday Business Post)

"Wry, funny and forensically observant." (Saga)

"A terrific music memoir." (Tony Clayton-Lea Irish Times)


The life and times and cultural heroes of the musician and songwriter Donald Fagen, co-founder of Steely Dan

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Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
A highly interesting book by Don the Dan. Not just an autobiography but a well-written work on various aspects of popular music of the 20th and 21st century. The hightlight is Donald's diary of the Dukes of September Tour 2012. No major dude could have told you better than Mr. Fagen what touring is all about
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta) (Kann Kundenrezensionen aus dem "Early Reviewer Rewards"-Programm beinhalten)

Amazon.com: 3.8 von 5 Sternen 170 Rezensionen
28 von 28 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen This book is everything that's good and bad about both 15. Oktober 2014
Von H.C. Carey - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
Always been a big steely dan fan and a fan of Fagen's solo albums. This book is everything that's good and bad about both: smart, sophisticated, mordant: also juvenile, misanthropic and almost entirely lacking in empathy. The first section, Fagen's essays , is really good criticism. The section on his college years is pretty good on that era. The section where he's touring is deeply unappealing: he's whiny, neurotic and spoiled. This is where you can tell he's been wealthy and famous since roughly his early twenties: he hates his audience, and speaks of them with considerable contempt; he has little or no apparent empathy for or interest in his bandmates; there's little or nothing about the experience of playing for people except whining about bad sound. This is the kind of thing you can get away with when Irving Azoff is your agent and people have been blowing smoke up your ass for all your adult life. That he thinks this would be interesting is a sign of a person who has been too cossetted for too long. I mean, nobody is carrying his bags!! This is partly why I've never gone to see Steely Dan--why would I pay hard earned dollars to watch someone who has contempt for me?

But he's got a really interesting harmonic sense and he bring so much more to songwriting than I love you I hate you i want to screw. When he writes about someone other than himself he has good things to say. But he seems to have zero idea how lucky he is. Really, it's like his account of Jean Shepherd: Fagen has curdled in his own gifts. He could go into old ancient with a sense of gratitude, humility and grace, or he could go into it whining that the food the caterers provide is subpar.
20 von 21 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen The cranky old hipster delivers 23. April 2014
Von Jane E. Stoltz - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Donald Fagen is one of the preeminent geniuses of modern music. It's so obvious from his solo stuff and his work as part of Steely Dan that the guy is brilliant. So obviously a book by him would be amazing, right?

Well, it is...but it's a bit of a mixed bag. Some chapters are about his childhood...some chapters are music reviews...and a large part of the book is a sort of journal from a tour a couple years ago with Michael McDonald and Boz Scaggs.

It's here that one realizes that the genius also is an unbelievable grouch. He is so neurotic that he elevates complaining about his surroundings and circumstances on the tour to an absolute art form. You shake your head and think you're glad you don't know the guy in person...and then you read a very sweet tribute to his now-deceased stepson and think that there is a tender heart in there somewhere, buried beneath all that hipster cynicism.

I ultimately decided that Fagen is a likable curmudgeon who writes prose as deftly as he writes music. This is a short read, and mostly a fun one...his bitchery is so over-the-top as to make you laugh out loud.
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Could have been so much more 18. Oktober 2014
Von Scott Hedegard - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
I love Steely Dan and Messrs. Fagen and Becker as much as any musicians, ever, including the Beatles. They wrote and continue to compose some of the smartest and captivating music in all rock, using healthy doses of their beloved jazz to create a sound no other band ever achieved.
Add to that they still tour, and while a new Dan album hasn't transpired, several solo albums have, all with that same quality. It was no trick to get me to be interested in "Eminent Hipsters", Fagen's book on his early formative years and a diary of a recent tour with Michael McDonald and Boz Skaggs. While I detest McDonald's voice, the Dukes helped rekindle touring for Steely Dan proper, and I was lucky to see them in great form this summer.
But what a disappointment this book is. The first part is fine. Fagen proves himself to be a keen observer and a very good writer himself. He shares his love of his jazz influences and R & B with the knowledge that ranks up with the most informed jazz critics. But - he then inexplicably skips the entire Steely Dan glory days era, the entire 1970's! Nor does he mention anything about his solo albums except how he got serious writer's block after "The Nightfly", and only mentions "Deacon Blues" because the Dukes happened to have a gig in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
I don't understand his reasoning, and it's possible he had a very good reason to skip over the most important part of his career, but this would be like reading a biography of McCartney that stopped with the Quarrymen and resumed after the Wings folded up.
Fagen isn't the hate filled grump some have taken him to be, though, and what we get is enjoyable. I must agree I'm as disgusted with modern society and its reliance on so much crap, hooked to gadgets, not interested in reading a book printed on an actual paper page, expecting instant shallow gratification for minimal effort and generally losing every sense of individualism and adventure along the way, thanks to mindless media shitstorms that are dumbing us down at an alarming rate. It's not you Fagen is disgusted with - it's the disposable society at large that makes us more and more robotic and unthinking with every new gadget that comes along. History is being ignored and we are utterly dependent on image.
So, for an interesting journal of one of his tours, and the early years, it's a nice quick read, but without Steely Dan, it's very disappointing. Maybe he will do a book on that, the most important part of his life, and I will be very interested. In the meantime, check out the book "Reeling In the Years" for the complete story.
5 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen The Deacon pontificates 10. Februar 2014
Von Kiyoshi - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
For those of us who love Steely Dan, this is a great read. You get to find out more about Fagan's influences and his psyche. As a fan of the Dan, you should expect flippant references to obscure cultural references. He is smart, and acerbic--again no surprises. What is a surprise is how fluent he is as a writer. And of course his wit. The man occasionally nails something in a way both hilarious and true. Take his assessment of Ike Turner:

"Ike’s concept (really a more raw and countrified version of Ray Charles’s act) was simple: the band plays tight; Tina goes berserk."

In the latter half he documents his descent into "ATD"--or "Active Tour Disorder"--characterized by his increasing surliness and frustrations with life on the road. Some of the other readers may take it too seriously. I'm sure he was surly and impatient. But he's funny as hell in his honest retelling. I laughed a lot, but also thought "Cool" a lot. He is the eminent hipster. I hope for more.
51 von 56 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Half of a great book 8. November 2013
Von S. D. Johnson - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verifizierter Kauf
I bought both the audio book and the hardcover book. I listened to the entire audio book, but have not yet started reading the hardcover, which I expect will be the same content. I want to let it settle a bit before re-exploring the story.

I loved the first half of the book. It describes the musical and other cultural influences on Donald's life. It starts with a detailed accounting of the story of the Boswell Sisters, who predated the similar sound of the Andrews Sisters in the 1930s. The book slowly traverses through his life until it reaches what would have been his senior year at Bard College, when he and Walter were arrested on trumped up drug charges by G. Gordon Liddy before he became known as a felon for Nixon.

At this point the story abruptly skips over decades to morph into the tour diary of the Dukes of September with Michael MacDonald and Boz Scaggs. At first it was rather interesting, but it quickly bogged down. He kind of obsesses about different things and seems somewhat neurotic in his fear of dealing with fans or swimming in the hotel pool.

While I appreciate the baring of the soul, it seemed kind of sad. I would have much preferred a continuation of the story in the same vein (somewhat detached) and hear about the forming of Steely Dan, his experiences in writing and working with Walter Becker, etc. It feels very much like Donald got about half-way through his book before losing motivation and then, to finish it up, they just slapped in the tour diary to fill out the minimum required pages.

I love all the music of Donald Fagen and Walter Becker. I'd love to hear more of their story. Hopefully Walter will continue where Donald left off or maybe Donald will write another book with the second half of the story.
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