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Updated by Kendra Brea Cooper on Jun 22, 2014
Headline for Music’s Next Chapter: 6 Fascinating Books about Music
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Music’s Next Chapter: 6 Fascinating Books about Music

Music has a hold on us in every part of the world. It’s like the never ending love of humanity, and so it deserves to be thought about and talked about. Here are 6 books that do just that:

1

This is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession by Daniel J. Levitin

This is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession by Daniel J. Levitin

This book dives into the profound connection humanity has with music. Using neuroscience and evolutionary psychology, Levitin dissects music’s power over us and our emotional lives. It’s written for the every reader so you don’t need a science degree to love this amazing ode to our love of the tune.

2

All You Need is Love:The Story of Popular Music by Tony Palmer

All You Need is Love:The Story of Popular Music by Tony Palmer

This book thoroughly digs up the history of popular music. Palmer lays out an interesting read about origins and connections. This music often gets pushed aside in the intellectual world because of its commercialism, mass consumption, and profit drive. While consumption and profit might be a part of it, popular music is still a space where stories of culture are told. Cultural theorist Stuart Hall stated that the popular is a place where hegemony and resistance play a tug-of-war.

3

Main Lines, Blood Feasts, and Bad Taste: A Lester Bangs Reader

Main Lines, Blood Feasts, and Bad Taste: A Lester Bangs Reader

Lester Bangs was one of the most influential music critics of his time. His irreverence and blunt interviewing style had a way of ripping rock music wide open with the blade of its own ego. What was left in the aftermath were the spilled guts in the form of words for all to see.

4

The Rest is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century by Alex Ross

The Rest is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century by Alex Ross

Alex Ross takes the reader through a historical journey by tying worlds of music together and making sense of it all. It’s an incredibly comprehensive book that looks at how music shaped the major events in history and our views of the world.

5

How Music Works by David Byrne

How Music Works by David Byrne

Talking Heads frontman, David Byrne, meshes a musical autobiography with theory and anthropology in this well written book. One of the many topics he takes on is how technology has shifted how we create and listen to music. This is a very important and thought provoking discussion in the digital age.

6

The Instinct: How Music Works and why we can’t do without it by Philip Ball Music

The Instinct: How Music Works and why we can’t do without it by Philip Ball Music

Philip Ball addresses how music seems to be one of the bases of creative humanity. It appears in all cultures, while shaping certain aspects of them, and leaving marks in our histories. Ball touches on that special and mysterious quality music has by using theory, philosophy, and psychology.