It Happened Right Here
America’s Pop Culture Landmarks
by Chris Epting
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Pub Date 15 Aug 2023 | Archive Date 29 Dec 2023
Author Chris Epting established a new genre in book publishing when a trio of titles in the early 2000s—James Dean Died Here: The Locations of America’s Pop Culture Landmarks, Elvis Presley Passed Here, and Marilyn Monroe Dyed Here—were released to critical acclaim and introduced readers to a groundbreaking travel concept: The pop culture road trip. Epting promptly followed these hugely popular and influential titles with two more legendary books: Led Zeppelin Crashed Here and Roadside Baseball.
A Booksense 76 pick at the time, James Dean Died Here was covered by such major news outlets as NPR’s "All Things Considered," USA Today, Los Angeles Times, and Publishers Weekly. Everyone from Ken Burns to The Sporting News to the New York Post expressed their love for Roadside Baseball, while Led Zeppelin Crashed Here was recommended for all public libraries by Library Journal and outlets from the Associated Press to Newsday encouraged any fan of rock and roll history to buy the book.
Now, in honor of the 20th anniversary of James Dean Died Here, Epting has produced It Happened Right Here: America’s Pop Culture Landmarks, which collects the best of the best from all of Epting’s prior books, and then adds dozens and dozens of new sites, many of them based on the pop culture of the 21st century.
It Happened Right Here once again takes you on a journey across North America to the exact locations where the most significant events in American popular culture took place. It’s a road map for pop culture sites, from Patty Hearst’s bank to the garage where Apple Computer was born. Fully updated, the book includes such new entries as:
• The locations featured in such television series as Stranger Things, Breaking Bad, and Curb Your Enthusiasm
• Locations celebrating the legacy of legendary musician Prince
• The dorm room where Facebook was created
• The location of the opening freeway sequence from La La Land
• The locations featured in the cult film Napoleon Dynamite
• The Jay-Z, Beyonce, Solange elevator incident
• The Jussie Smollett Subway sandwich shop location
• Steve Bartman's seat location at Wrigley Field
• and dozens and dozens of other new sites!
Featuring hundreds of photographs, this fully illustrated, updated, and revised encyclopedic look at the locations of the most famous and infamous pop culture events includes the fascinating history of over a thousand landmarks—as well as their exact location. With up-to-date information for the sites included in Epting’s five original titles, plus dozens and dozens of new additions, It Happened Right Here is an amazing portrait of the bizarre, shocking, weird and wonderful moments that have come to define American popular culture.
A Note From the Publisher
“Quirky travel guide details America’s pop culture landmarks. It’s not the history taught in school. . . . It Happened Right Here offers a whirlwind tour organized by subject. Separate chapters delve into music, crime, and the catchall ‘Americana: The Weird and the Wonderful.’”—New York Daily News
“Whether you’re a pop culture aficionado or a curious traveler seeking offbeat adventures, this book invites you to embark on a riveting pilgrimage—whether by armchair or motor vehicle—to the iconic and hidden landmarks that have been immortalized by noteworthy events. . . . It Happened Right Here is a wonderful guide with surprises and delights on every page. It’s a celebration, a revelation, and most importantly, lasting recognition of the moments and places that have shaped and continue to define American popular culture.”—Roadtrip America
“It Happened Right Here: America’s Pop Culture Locations is a trip!”—Yahoo It List
“A veritable cornucopia of pop culture gotta sees.”—Boyce McClain’s Consumers & Collectors Corner
Past Praise for Chris Epting’s Pop Culture Location Books
“Chris Epting has written a guidebook to a broad range of historic and often hysterical American landmarks—more than 700 in all. James Dean Died Here includes the spot where the young movie icon perished in a car accident, the location of the Brady Bunch house, and the hangar where the final scene of Casablanca may have been shot.” —National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered”
“Who says Americans don’t know much about history?. . . Epting’s quirky factoids are most appealing.” —Publishers Weekly
“This book bulges with facts!” —Los Angeles Times
“James Dean Died Here is an addictively irresistible tour through pop culture past and present.” —Chicago Tribune
“The whereabouts of 600-plus places that have helped shape national identity, from the momentous (site of the world’s first A-bomb explosion) to the ridiculous (where Zsa Zsa slapped that hunky Beverly Hills cop).” —USA Today
“A virtual roadmap of Hollywood and pop culture history.” —ABC News
“Chris Epting has done it again!. . . .From Christopher Columbus and Johnny Appleseed to Michael Jackson and Elizabeth Smart, Marilyn Monroe Dyed Here spans American history. I just wish my high school history text had been half as compelling a read. . . .Epting’s work (and he isn’t done yet—he’s at work on volume three) brings cultural history out of the ether into three dimensions. The events he highlights may have vanished into the past, but the locations are still with us. Thanks to James Dean Died Here and now Marilyn Monroe Dyed Here, they’re as close as your bookshelf.” —Roadtripusa.com
“A guide to not-so-famous cultural landmarks. . . .these off-the-beaten track sites aren’t easy to find, but that’s precisely the point. . . .readers need not be history buffs or frequent flyers in order to appreciate Marilyn Monroe Dyed Here. The trivia behind the trivia can be ingested seriously or casually. . . .Epting has made more than 600 landmarks less elusive.” —National Post
“There’s something intriguing about visiting a place where a historical moment occurred. Of course, one’s definition of history varies. If you’re Chris Epting, you’re obsessed with uncovering the strange, weird and wonderful moments that constitute American pop culture history. Epting has unearthed a ton of information here, dividing this fun and irresistible guide into palatable pop culture chunks: history and tragedy, crime, murder and assassination, celebrity deaths, movies, music and literary stuff. This book will keep you entertained for hours.” —Chicago Tribune
“You might think, after amassing two other seemingly comprehensive tomes about the places where something interesting happened, that the indefatigable Chris Epting might start running out of material. Nothing could be further from the truth, however, for a couple of good reasons. One is that American history still contains many rich lodes just waiting for someone like Epting to mine them. The other is that pop culture is not like fossil fuel— it’s a renewable resource. . . . Epting’s other two books in this series, James Dean Died Here and Marilyn Monroe Dyed Here, have spawned a movement among people who, like the author, like to go and stand on a spot where an event of cultural significance occurred. For these fans, Elvis Presley Passed Here will provide many months and untold miles of fascinating exploration. But the great thing about this book is that physical travel is optional. The book is a journey in itself, a sort of hop-scotch game through American culture that leaves the reader with an overview utterly unlike a standard history narrative. . . . A delight for aficionados of the random-page approach to reading, it’s just as good as a linear experience. Cover to cover, Chris Epting has most definitely done it again.” —RoadTripAmerica.com
“You’ve done Graceland, Dollywood and toured the stars’ homes. But have you been to Maria’s Hair Design in Aberdeen, Wash.? Owned by the mother of Nirvana drummer Krist Novoselic, it’s where the famous ’90s grunge act practiced in their fledgling days. And what about the Aquarium and Pet Center in Santa Monica, Calif., where Britney Spears bought her dog Bit Bit? If you’ve never heard of these offbeat attractions, or don’t know where to find them, check out Elvis Presley Passed Here, a book by Chris Epting that lists info about these and hundreds of other nearly unknown pop culture locales.” —New York Daily News
“I don’t know how good Chris Epting is at crossword puzzles, but this intrepid pop culture expert sure knows how to crisscross the country, filling in the blanks in search of the ‘exact locations where rock and roll history was made.’ Epting, who’s been doing these entertaining, eccentric compilations for several years now, offers about 600 entries here. Take the location of Bob Dylan’s fateful 1966 motorcycle accident off Highway 212 in Woodstock, or Bob Dylan Drive, the name on the street sign on the block in Hibbing, Minn., where the bard grew up. Certainly, future generations of Americans will be grateful for Epting’s pop peregrinations. One of my favorite selections shows how the gravestones of Dee Dee, Joey and Johnny Ramone differ dramatically (as well as geographically). As for the title of this volume, it refers to the Edgewater Inn in Seattle, where, in 1969, the hard-rockin’ British band partook in some ‘unseemly behavior’ (Epting’s quotes) in room 242.” —New York Newsday
“For rock ’n’ roll fans who like to travel, there’s a new guide from Santa Monica Press: Led Zeppelin Crashed Here, by Chris Epting. In fact, the book is fun to leaf through even if you don’t plan on hitting the road any time soon. It’s packed with tidbits about larger-than-life music legends from the past 50 years and beyond, from places where they grew up and went to school, to venues where they performed and recorded their music, to sites that mark their sometimes tragic endings. You’ll be humming old Bruce Springsteen songs as you read about his youthful performances in New Jersey, and trying to remember the lyrics to the Rolling Stones’ “Have You Seen Your Mother Baby” as you gaze upon a photo of a Manhattan building featured in a promotion for the song in which the band appeared in drag.” —Associated Press/Yahoo News
“Epting manages to pay tribute to the major players without marginalizing the minor ones, choosing moments in musical history that cover a broad range of styles and generations. Recommended for all public libraries.” —Library Journal
“What a wonderful book. All the ‘stations of the cross’ of our national pastime are here, big and small, telling and frivolous. I can imagine this book in the glove compartment of every true fan’s car, a handy reference to this beloved game no matter where in the country you are.” —Ken Burns, filmmaker and baseball historian
“This one-of-a-kind road atlas takes baseball fans across the United States to out-of-the-way spots and near-forgotten sandlots, where the remnants of baseball history still endure: where a plaque marks the spot of Babe Ruth’s first professional home run, where the lights that once illuminated Ebbets Field now shine on Downing Stadium, where the crumbling bleachers of Cleveland’s old League Park still stand as a Greek ruins of baseball.” —The Sporting News
“If you’re tired of talking about labor strife, injuries and launch angles and just want to enjoy baseball’s basic qualities that bind generations, Roadside Baseball is for you.” —New York Post
“For the fan, this is the ultimate road trip. Chris Epting is the perfect traveling secretary to lead you to all these great baseball stops.” —Joe Garagiola, announcer and former major-league baseball player
“Reading Roadside Baseball is like spending an afternoon rummaging around in baseball’s attic.” —Jim Bouton, author and former major-league baseball player
Average rating from 25 members
Entertaining and educational! Had no idea about some of the history of the places listed in the book. Very cool to read and learn about!