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Canyon of Dreams: The Magic and the Music of Laurel Canyon
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Canyon of Dreams: The Magic and the Music of Laurel Canyon

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  117 ratings  ·  24 reviews
A lavishly illustrated insider’s look at 80 years of music and culture in Laurel Canyon.

Laurel Canyon is a zip code with its own play list: to name just a few, Sonny & Cher, The Doors, The Turtles, Canned Heat, Monkees, Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne; Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young; Eagles, and Carole King all cultivated their immortal soun
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published October 6th 2009 by Sterling
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Jim Cherry
The Canyon of Dreams, the Magic and Music of Laurel Canyon is an amazing history of Laurel Canyon that sits in the Hollywood Hills right above Sunset Boulevard and since the beginning of Hollywood, starting with The Garden of Allah, a hotel opened by one of the wives of Rudolph Valentino, it quickly garnered a reputation as a place for a hideaway for movie stars, musicians, and artists. Errol Flynn had trysts there, jazz musicians came there to score opium, big band leaders Tommy Dorsey and Kay ...more
Honestly, I can't say I read the whole book. The narrative voice was just too trying! Either it was devoted to linking short quotes by musicians (mostly name dropping) or it focused on giving you a sense of the setting using really stilted hip-in-the-sixties speech, man. I liked looking at the pictures and getting a sense of the scene, however. The book itself was beautifully bound and the page layout was very attractive. Nice matte paper.
This book is aptly named, ever since I can remember I have loved the music that has emanated from California, I was just seven when I first got into the Beach Boys and of course the love of them sent me down a wonderful road that has as I have often said been the wonderful soundtrack to my life. I also believe that the music you love influences you as a person, this book is a testament to that as the people within the pages lives were changed by the music they heard.

The books I have read have al
Timothy Finnegan
This is a beautiful, deeply satisfying book. It is a coffee-table book filled with pictures and oral history about the Los Angeles music scene in the 60's and 70's. Laurel Canyon is the mountainous area just above West Hollywood, a 5 minute drive from the Sunset Strip, an easy commute from where proto-hippies lived, created music, made popular history at the various clubs and recording studios. Let’s see: Frank Zappa, Brian Wilson, The Doors, the Monkees, Love, The Byrds, Crosby Stills and Nash, ...more
Canyon of Dreams provides a good sense of the community that created so much great music. The book itself is attractive, with thick matte pages and tons of photos. Unfortunately, the cover came unglued the second or third time I opened the book, destroying my first impression that this was a beautiful, well-made book. Still, I enjoyed it, and it enhances the experience of listening to those great musicians.
This is not a book to read from front to back ... this is a book to get lost in ... to dream about and pour over. To long for. Just looking at the cover art gentles me ... and I can barely keep myself from bursting into song!

Beautifully presented and spanning some eighty years, there is something for everyone tucked inside it's pages! A coffee table book that will spark conversations and imaginations, memories and dreams! The photos alone are worth the price tag and if I could give more stars,
Luann Yetter
Great illustrations and insight from lots of good sources. But Kubernik errs on the side of over-writing. He makes the rookie journalist's mistake of inserting a variety of attributions when "said" would do the job and stay out of the way of the quote. Why didn't an editor catch this?
This is not a book you can stamp with "read" on it. It is a book you are always reading, always go back to.
A beautiful layout, big size, totally engrossing edition of a great era in music.
Simon Sonnak
Fascinating time and place, this is big well illustrated book about a Freaky/Creepy-Crawly place. So much information from it's host of characters.
Robyn Obermeyer
Awesome coffee table book! Borrowed it from library during snowstorms in 2015!
The photos are nice, but the book is basically a to-hell-with-the-facts series of memoirs and old stories that most music fans will already have heard before. Large sections were devoted to Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt, and the Eagles...but one of the most important and interesting figures from the 70's L.A. music scene, Warren Zevon, was left out of the book entirely! Additionally, don't look to this book for accurate facts: one chapter mentions that Jim Morrison died the summer before Hendri ...more
Lee Anne
Just skimmed this, but it's full of great pictures of the scenesters of Laurel Canyon in the sixties. Frank Zappa, David Crosby, Cass Elliot, Joni Mitchell, Linda Ronstadt, and Charles Manson make appearances. I was mainly looking at it for the Monkees stuff, as Peter Tork and, even more so, Micky Dolenz were important characters in this story. Michael Nesmith is given a few shoutouts, too, and mention is made of his influence (as much as Gram Parsons or the Byrds, but less recognized) as a coun ...more
Enjoyed the trip to Laurel Canyon from beginning to end. Learned a lot about musicians/bands I've been listening to for years and something about a few I've never known much about.

Like rock? Read it.
Sue Campbell
Good for hat I was looking for...not an everyday read
Julie Brock
Great photos - and this book should have stopped right there. Author is annoying, very impressed with himself. Chapters are arranged by musician or band, and there is so much cross-referencing between musicians (because they were all playing at each others' homes or studios) that the book doesn't flow well.
terribly chosen large-type blurbs abound - leading me to think (upon first flip-through) that the book would be yet another poorly written tome about something i love - but, in fact, it turned out to be rather well-written & filled with charming bits. good enough for the 1 chapter before bed each night read.
Interesting, but ultimately a triumph of style over content. Lovely to look at and browse through, but the writing was mainly verbatim anecdotes, and just didn't flow or provide much in the way of a narrative. And quite shallow in the way it treated each of its subjects. Disappointing, really.
Mar 03, 2011 J. rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: canadians
This book is about the photos primarily. A nostalgic look at the countercultural camelot that settled in just above L.A. for awhile, in the late sixties and early seventies. Bittersweet look back at the Ladies Of The Canyon and their gentlemen friends.
Cooper Renner
A fun and mostly interesting look at the large number of musicians who have lived and worked in the Laurel Canyon neighborhood of LA. Mostly folks from the '60s.
Sharon Zito
This was fun to read, looking back at the story of the music and the artists that was, and still is a big part of my life.
Chris Miles
More like a work of art... Stories, pictures, clippings. A quick perusal takes you right into those heady days in California
BeautIful collage of photos, momentos and chapters on all who made Laurel Canyon what it was and is.
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
Aug 21, 2011 Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides marked it as decided-not-to-read
Shelves: music, coffee-table
I was hoping for something that was more local history and less music history/coffee table book.
Packed full of interviews and photos
Andrew WAlkey
Andrew WAlkey marked it as to-read
Oct 09, 2015
Faun marked it as to-read
Oct 09, 2015
Zichrini marked it as to-read
Oct 09, 2015
Mary Spain
Mary Spain marked it as to-read
Oct 07, 2015
Kate marked it as to-read
Oct 05, 2015
Mark Russell
Mark Russell marked it as to-read
Oct 03, 2015
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Harvey Kubernik, a lifelong resident of Los Angeles, is a veteran music journalist whose work has been published nationally in Melody Maker, The Los Angeles Free Press, Crawdaddy, Musician, Goldmine, MIX, The Los Angeles Times, and MOJO, among other publications. As a West Hollywood and Laurel Canyon insider, he has unparalleled access to the sources, personalities, and even those who are still ba ...more
More about Harvey Kubernik...
Leonard Cohen: Everybody Knows Turn Up the Radio!: Rock, Pop, and Roll in Los Angeles 1956–1972 A Perfect Haze: The Illustrated History of the Monterey International Pop Festival Hollywood Shack Job: Rock Music in Film and on Your Screen This Is Rebel Music: The Harvey Kubernik Innerviews

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