Cover Image: Music Is History

Music Is History

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Questlove has written a very interesting book about music history his reflections about his life in Philly and the life and times of each city the good and really the bad. Through music you have shown the struggle the pain if you listen to the words, also love in some. He begins in 1971 and I must say that from the ’70s ’80s and parts of the ’90s this was a walk down memory lane. A lot of the songs he talks about I still listen to and have on vinyl. He begins each chapter with a little overview of events of that year which was interesting as well. Living through those times brought me back to good times and some not-so-good, yet I still had music which was what he was talking about. When he got into the DJ, RAP period though I listen to some of the music it is not until this book that a lot of the words and meanings I can now understand, whether I could not hear them before or I just focused on the beat I don’t know. What I do know is that this is a book that I will read again one because I love music and two I like history and we are repeating a lot of the same ones as if we are going backward instead of learning from the past and that is scary. I was surprised to find that he mentioned Stevie Wonder’s album “Journey through the secret life of plants” he is the only other person besides myself I think that may have bought and liked it. In 1979 my friends thought I was crazy but it was Stevie Wonder who was crazy with what he did on that album it was good to read after all of these someone else enjoyed it. I found this book to be a fascinating read about music and what was going on around us. I received this book from Netgalley.com I gave it 5 stars.
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Questlove's Music is History is an enjoyable mix of history and music (the title explains it all!). Questlove goes through the years of his life, discussing big historical events alongside the music that defined that year for him. The format of going year to year was incredibly engaging. You get to read about Questlove's personal anecdotes, while he places you in a very specific moment in history with memorable events and facts about the artists and songs he discusses. Certain years are accompanied by playlists that always have interesting themes. I listened to the songs mentioned throughout the book as I read and that really added to my overall experience. 

Music is History really highlights how connected everything in life is. You see history's effect on music, music's effect on history, and how all of these things play into Questlove's past. I love books about music, especially when they take on social or cultural history in relation to music so this book was perfect for me.

 I'd recommend this to any music lover!
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Four and a half stars, rounding up to Five.
Really interesting history of music and culture. Questlove, the drummer and bandleader of The Roots, begins the year he was born, and highlights some of the biggest headlines of that year, then relates one or more songs or artists from that year to what was happening in the world and more specifically to Questlove and his life. Reading Music is History felt like having a deep personal conversation with Questlove about family, inspirations, and music. It was a joy to be introduced to music that was new to me, and reintroduced to music I hadn't listened to in years. The little lists of songs sprinkled throughout the book were a treasure! This book would be the perfect gift for anyone who loves music, pop culture or history. The only thing keeping this from a solid five star review is that the last few years got lumped together and didn't get the same individual treatment as the pre-2000s. It felt like a rush job to get the book finished, and I would have liked to read more of Questlove's thoughts.

I am so grateful to Abrams/Abrams Image and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review Music is History.
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Before I talk about today's book, I have to give you some background: I love anything involving music or film history. I like to attribute this to my parents. My dad spent my childhood (and still does) talking about his favorite bands and musicians and interesting tidbits surrounded them. We grew up watching Pop-Up Video on VH1 (I can still hear the little jingle as if it were yesterday). I recently watched "This is Pop" on Netflix and it blew me away. My mom introduced me to classic films which directly led to my obsession with film history and trivia. I took several film classes in college and regularly devour documentaries and biographies on the industry. This all leads to my excitement about this next book: Music is History, by Questlove. 

From Amazon: Focusing on the years 1971 to the present, Questlove finds the hidden connections in the American tapes- try, whether investigating how the blaxploitation era reshaped Black identity or considering the way disco took an assembly-line approach to Black genius. And these critical inquiries are complemented by his own memories as a music fan, and the way his appetite for pop culture taught him about America. A history of the last half-century and an intimate conversation with one of music’s most influential and original voices, Music Is History is a singular look at contemporary America.

The extreme give-me-all-the-details nerd inside of me swooned over this book. Questlove does such a cool thing with this book by connecting music from a certain year with key events from that year. He also ends each chapter with a list of songs/albums that relate to the information in the chapter…and I just LOVE a list. It was fun to look up and listen to the music on those lists after a chapter. I feel like I learned a lot and you can't deny how completely cool Questlove is. I went back and forth between the ebook and the audiobook (narrated by the author) and both were good experiences. It is obvious how much time and thought and research and effort went into this and I love that. Also, I couldn’t help but think what a cool tv series this would make! I would 100% watch it, especially if Questlove was running the show.

I recommend if you are a music/history/trivia fan!
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Such a good read! Love Questlove so much and this book made me love him even more! Highly recommend to all Roots fans out there!!
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A really interesting personal / pop culture / societal history from ?uestlove, drummer and bandleader of the Roots.  the book is structured chronologically for every year of his life (although much of the 21st century gets smooshed together at the end, which is a bit disappointing).  Each chapter begins with some highlights of the year and then dives deep into a particular song (usually) from that year and what it meant to entertainment/musical culture and (more importantly) what it meant to ?uestlove and his life.  

There's a lot of interesting meditations here on the power of music, and influences, and (in the later years) how family and friendship affect you in unexpected ways.  I loved hearing how he approaches creating music wih the roots and sets as a DJ (check out his killer post-Oscars playlist here:  https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0D3lPvcCccDMXE28mILTFk?si=9e02869a614b45c6 ).  and I got exposed to some 70s and 80s soul I didn't know about and was reminded about music I haven't heard in too long (my word was Thriller a great album).  

On the whole, a really good book that made me think a lot about the power of music in my life.
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Music Is History
Questlove
ABRAMS, Abrams Image

Questlove writes in his own voice, as if having a lively one on one conversation with each reader, in his new book Music is History. The narrative progresses with the sharing of his personal perspectives of music and how it flows in history from 1971 to the present. His enthusiasm and knowledge is compelling, as he traces the role of music as an influence over the decades in terms of diversity, social issues, and historical happenings. I now think deeper about the songs and their influences presented in the book, learning about new ones to me and revisiting some from my past. 
Thank you to Net Galley and ABRAMS, Abrams Image for the advance audiobook and opportunity to provide my unbiased review.
#MusicIsHistory #NetGalley
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'Music Is History,' the latest collab by Questlove and Ben Greenman is a superb/evocative/unique/revelatory take on the last half-century of, y'know, music and history. The best way to bring it all to life: load up every song that's mentioned along the way. You'll hear the familiar tracks in a new light and discover *so* many deep dives from Questlove's treasure chest [love those lists]. Glorious multi-media immersement! Highest recommendation!! Mega-thanks to ABRAMSbooks for the ARC!!!
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I wanted to review the AUDIO VERSION but was not able to get MP3 verson from publisher So I can't review it.

Hardback looks good
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The stories and facts in this book were extremely interesting. The history of so many songs was fascinating but I had a really hard time following. Personally I just felt like the stories would get so off track, I wouldn't remember the point of the chapter. But I highly recommend reading this book, it will open your eyes and your mind!
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Really enjoyed this musical history book.  Would have preferred a physical copy, but the ebook is phenomenal.
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I love Questlove's approach to this book - not as a complete and finalized historical text, but as a conversation-starter, a jumping-off point for all the topics that are interconnected with music. This book also feels very personal to the author given his background and passion for music. Anyone with an interest in music and its greater relevance to society is sure to take something valuable away from this book!
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I love music, and I love history, so this book was my jam. I read it with my music app opened so I could listen to each song as Questlove broke down the song’s impact on history. I am close enough to his age that I identified with some of his memories of how music hit and changed over time, but his encyclopedic knowledge took to me artists and songs that were new to me.
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This was an insightful and interesting read! 
I learned a lot, even though I know quite a bit about music. I loved that. 
Great book!
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My thanks to NetGalley and the publisher Abrams for an advanced copy of this musical history book. 

Music is a reflection of the times. Music also has the ability to be timeless. You truly can't understand an era where momentous events occurred without understanding the culture that both added too and was in turn affected by events.  Ahmir Questlove Thompson in his latest tome Music is History has decided to cover the last 50 or so years of music, covering his time on this planet, one song a year, with many asides with a little history to give the song its place in history. 

Being the same age, and yet culturally removed, I loved this book. I have always loved music, creativity and history, and Questlove has done a wonderful job of mixing all three in his book. Each chapter covers a year, until the 2000's, with a brief list of momentous events, a little biography of Questlove's life at the time, then a discourse on songs, artists, movements genres and more. Grab some paper for you will be writing song titles and band names down. Also included are playlists with various themes, from songs that were close to being perfect to best cover songs and more. 

The writing is clear and concise with research featuring not just the music but what was going on in the world at the time. As a reader I knew that Questlove was enjoying himself as he wrote, and that feeling was infectious. I've been remiss in reading his other books, one that I will have to remedy. Perfect for music lovers of any kind, of for people who need something in these continuing days of COVID to feel better. Great reading. Great tunes. You can't go wrong.
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Questlove's connection to music runs so deep that it's always rewarding to read his writing on the topic. I really enjoyed the chapters covering the '90s since he was in the thick of it by then. I'd recommend it for fans of Questlove's previous books or anyone interested in the last 40 years of popular music.
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Quickly realized this book needs to be enjoyed in its physical form. So much to learn and listen to between these pages. Questlove is a musical guru and I appreciate him sharing his knowledge and love of music.

 A physical copy was requested but I have not heard back. Thank you for the opportunity to review this book.
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I cannot overstate how impressive this book is from beginning to end. Questlove is an amazing musician who has an impressive catalog of music that he has performed and created. I knew this would be interesting but I had no idea how informative it would be. 

The layout of the chapters as a journey through each year of musical history made it easy to follow and easy to relate to as well. I found myself trying to remember where I was and what music was shaping my life during the times that he mentioned. Some of his musical choices were parallel to mine and at other times, I was introduced to artists with whom I was less familiar.

This is an excellent book for anyone with a love and appreciation for the impact that music has on our lives. That is what is most appealing about the book, it is not just a recap of music history. It ties in how music connected with the most important moments in history.
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I absolutely loved this self-reflected look into Culture with Music Is History by Questlove. I absolutely love music, and this is really the best of all worlds.
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Questlove writes about music as a part of American history, world history and his own personal history. In doing so, he brings to life the years of his youth, the music of his life, and the world he has moved through. This book will have you re-thinking how you were taught history, and how you absorb it. As he says, there are many "nonparallel histories, messily intertwined, multiply interdependent, and they remind you that you can't learn one without the other, and also that anything you're seeing is also something you're not seeing."
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