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Sonic Boom! the History of Northwest Rock, from Louie, Louie to Smells Like Teen Spirit
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Sonic Boom! the History of Northwest Rock, from Louie, Louie to Smells Like Teen Spirit

3.47 of 5 stars 3.47  ·  rating details  ·  34 ratings  ·  9 reviews
The compelling saga of how one backwater music scene could produce such disparate mega talents as the Ventures, Jimi Hendrix, Heart, Robert Cray, Queensryche, Sir Mix a Lot, Nirvana, and the legendary garage stompers, the Sonics.
Paperback, 284 pages
Published March 1st 2009 by Backbeat Books
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Ted
May 07, 2010 Ted rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: music
Peter Blecha (or Backbeat Books) should have put the Sonics, with perhaps a small of inset of Pat O' Day, on the front cover. However, I realize they need to sell the book in 2010 and beyond--hence the Mudhoney photo. I didn't realize the huge impact (some say stranglehold) that Pat O'Day had on Pacific Northwest Rock 'n' Roll in the '60's. Also, amazing that he reappeared during the punk/power pop/new wave movement of the late '70's. The chapters about O'Day's rival Boyd Grafmyer and his merry ...more
Mairin
I bought this book anticipating it to be mostly about the grunge scene, but boy was I surprised. There was only really any mention of the music industry in the Northwest after the 70s in the last chapter of the book. So if you're looking for a book about grunge, don't buy this one. HOWEVER, I thoroughly enjoyed the book anyway. I never knew much about the music scene in the 50s and early 60s, especially in the upper left USA, and found it fascinating. Overall, I would recommend it!
Tiffany
A decent look at the history of Seattle/Northwest music, from WAAAAAAAY before Nirvana broke out (Yes, we had a music scene before then).

I say it's "decent" because there's SO much to cover, you can tell a lot had to be left out to make this a normal-sized book. But for the most part, Blecha got the important stuff, with plenty of juicy parts thrown in.

My one problem is that there seemed to be a lot of issues with grammar, punctuation, sentence structure (including repeating words)... all that
...more
Johanna
This book was a surprisingly fascinating and quick read. I read it as background research for an exhibit I'm working on and found it enlightening, particularly how Blecha documents the musical scenes in 1950s and 1960s Seattle. I did feel that his writing style could at times be a little too conversational and informal, though. It made me wonder if I was really reading something that was well researched and documented, or the ramblings of a rabid fan. At the same time, I'm sure Blecha's tone was ...more
Mike
Very interesting history of the Pacific Northwest music scene by a local author that knows his stuff. Blecha's specialty and main interest, however, seems to be in the region's R&B influenced rock music from the late 1950's and 1960's. The narrative doesn't even move out of the 60's until chapter 29 (out of 36!) and the grunge phenomenon is given less than 30 pages of attention. That said, there probably isn't a better history of the early Seattle/Tacoma/Portland/Vancouver musical climate th ...more
Brandon Burke
I wish i could have finished this book. I really wanted the information in it, but it is so poorly written. I have read other reviews on here and other people seem to really like it, so you should give it a try, but I cant keep going with it.
Jen
A lot of information. A lot. This book is packed with tidbits, but not quite enough "heart" to really make it interesting. I liked reading about the local scene, especially landmarks and clubs, but just didn't grab me.
Andrew
Very good and quite informative. My only beef with it is that anything post 1966 or so seems kind of "tacked-on." I feel like grunge didn't quite get a fair shake.
Al
If I could have only lived in Seattle as a teenager in the early 60's!
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