- Taschenbuch: 226 Seiten
- Verlag: Backbeat Books (1. April 2004)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 0879307927
- ISBN-13: 978-0879307929
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 15,2 x 1,3 x 23,5 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: Schreiben Sie die erste Bewertung
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 659.796 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
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Taboo Tunes: A History of Banned Bands and Censored Songs (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 1. April 2004
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Music has always been a source of controversy, from "Puff the Magic Dragon" to "Cop Killer," Elvis to Eminem, Dylan to the Dixie Chicks, and Madonna to Marilyn Manson. Filled with several centuries' worth of raunchy sex ditties, morbid murder bailads, blasphemous satanic songs, paeans to intoxicating substances, and outrageous political antics, this unique compendium uncovers the stories of censors' efforts to squelch these acts of expression. It examines the various societal forces - such as repressive governments, busybody community organisations, and self-appointed moral guardians - that have worked to limit how artists are allowed to express themselves, and makes clearer what censorship means for all. Milestones include: The U.S. government's troubling anti-music moves since the 9/11 terrorist incidents; An early-'60s campaign to outlaw electric guitars; The proposed 1933 congressional bill that would have mandated the incarceration of fans "intoxicated" by jazz - a plan echoed in '98 when various law enforcement organisations proposed forced hospitalisation for fans of the popular Shock-Rock band, Marilyn Manson; And, the ancient Roman law of 451 BC that defined the singing of bawdy songs as "a disruption of public order" - an infraction punishable by death.
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The book breezes through the intro and the first chapter setting up the rock era, 1955+ --knock off a star--, but in fairness, pre-WWII era music censorship and the narrower morals' mindset in popular music ("Does Jazz Put the Sin in Syncopation" from 1921's LADY'S HOME JOURNAL, oh, that evil jazz!; wailing Lombardo alto saxes! Flappers corrupting young boys!) is something murky and requiring some degree of academic archaeology, which is beyond the scope of this intro. If you have any shellac collector friends or tend to dig back through obscure jazz recordings to hear drug, sex, and racial issues before the '50s, you have some idea how daunting a task it is to unearth those old bones in sheet music and shellac 78s' recordings that were considered too "low" for polite society.
The second chapter kicks in about the viseral reaction to the second coming of jazz (the Swing era was beaten down and capped off by gas rationing, among other things) as THE popular music when white pop labels exploited blues/r&b as a short-term money-making fad in 1955, then Pat Boone and Georgia Gibbs inadvertently obliterated the careers of 1947-55 vocalists. The third chapter, though finally kicks in, "The Devil In Disguise." Thereafter, it's an endless recycling of the same voodoo: trying keep the lid on open class warfare. New code words, same story: jungle music, rock music is the devil's music, filthy lyrics, backward masking, illuminati, protest songs, communist folkies, wholesome family entertainment, "good" music, just self-righteous weirdos worrying that someone, somewhere, might be enjoying themselves on hi-fi speakers/headphones. The whitebread pop reactionary attempts with business- and state-sponsored censorship reads like PC ("political correctness") in raging full-blown reverse.
The book reads like an alternate mirror image of those Bob Larson Satanism-Rock and Dan/Steve Peters brother's EEEvil monster-under-your-bed books (Ozzy is fumbling around down there looking for bats). Peter Blecha has a center-leftist or liberal slant to this work, especially the last several chapters, but he does make entertaining barbs very readable. Make sure to get yourself a stack of Pastor Bob Larson, Dan & Steve Peters, Lynn Bryson, Frank Garlock, Lex De Azevedo, David Noebel, Jacob Aranza, and especially JEFF GODWIN -- best read at 3AM with a flashlight under your bed covers--, and scare yourself that civilization will collapse because, as we all know, Pat Boone sang "Tutti Frutti" and made it all respectable.
There's too much sarcasm among the reporting, not to mention too many forced italics, which makes it feel like the author is ramming their opinion down your throat rather than respecting your ability to understand his narrative (rather ironic in a book about free speech). And even though exhaustive research has gone into this book, the awkwardly structured Notes and Sources appendix makes it difficult to track down the sources (why not use footnotes?). While sometimes there's too much information in lengthy lists, there are a few vague references to events or artists that lack detail, leaving you to wonder, say, who that artist is, what they did, or how their battle against the establishment turned out. The author knows his stuff; he just doesn't show his work very efficiently.
Ultimately, it's tough to claim the moral high ground against the right when you sink to their same name-calling tactics. The battle against music censorship is a noble topic worth getting angry about, and Taboo Tunes offers valuable, passionately written content, but the underlying political agenda could have been delivered with a lighter and less whiny tone and therefore be less distracting -- let the atrocities stand for themselves. After all, even a protest song benefits from a sweet melody.