A Bookseller Recommends - Colin - Favorite Music Biographies
Jessica Hopper is my favorite music writer and within minutes of cracking open this book you'll understand why. A deep-dive into all kinds of genres and artists, this book will remind you why you still listen.
A fascinating behind-the-scenes look at one of the most talented songwriters of our time.
An updated and expanded edition of the classic Loretta Lynn autobiography, go ahead and preorder this one, comes out in February 2021.
I'm a huge fan of everything Shea Serrano does, and that all started with this collection of essays about the importance of rap music. Hilarious and insightful.
Both of Peter Guralnick's Elvis books are incredible, this is the first. The story of an absolute legend, the King himself.
Anna Mae Bullock was born in Nutbush, TN, and would become one of the most iconic performers of all time. Her story is tragic and heartbreaking, but her strength and determination make this an ultimately uplifting autobiography.
My favorite music biography I've read, the story of Paul, Tommy, Bob and Chris - four Minneapolis kids who knew nothing as well as they knew how to self-destruct.
Part biography, part memoir, the story of massively-influential Texas troubadour Guy Clark, brilliantly written and beautifully told
This wildly important book shines a light on a true rock-n-roll pioneer, and still so much more than that. Rosetta Tharpe couldn't be defined, couldn't be limited, an intriguing figure far ahead of her time.
Maybe the best jazz biography out there, Robin Kelley opts for the story of Monk the man, eschewing the stuff of legend. An outstanding and moving piece of writing.
The rise and fall of Memphis's own Stax Records, reading this book feels like stepping into a time machine. Reading it feels like you're hanging out with some of the most talented people to ever play music. The history, the passion, the performances, this book captures it all.
Another Peter Guralnick book on the list, but this Sam Cooke biography is a must. The story of Sam Cooke is the story of America in the 50's and 60's and Guralnick does justice to the importance and genius of Sam Cooke.
The hilarious and poignant memoir of a heavy-metal loving kid in South Dakota. With tons of humurous asides and pop-culture critiques, Fargo Rock City is the story about how music can help you survive a place and a navigate a scene where you don't fit in.