Reading Lyrics: More Than 1,000 of the Century's Finest Lyrics--a Celebration of Our Greatest Songwriters, a Rediscovery of Forgotten Masters, and an Appreciation of an
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Reading Lyrics: More Than 1,000 of the Century's Finest Lyrics--a Celebration of Our Greatest Songwriters, a Rediscovery of Forgotten Masters, and an Appreciation of an

4.33 of 5 stars 4.33  ·  rating details  ·  18 ratings  ·  7 reviews
A vast anthology bringing together more than one thousand of the best American and English lyrics of the twentieth century, this is an extraordinary celebration of a unique art form.

Reading Lyrics begins with the first masters of the colloquial phrase, including George M. Cohan (“Give My Regards to Broadway”), P. G. Wodehouse (“Till the Clouds Roll By”), and Irving Berlin,...more
Hardcover, 736 pages
Published November 21st 2000 by Pantheon
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Paul
Before the Beatles, British people gaped in awe at the outpouring of pop songs from America. We all thought you HAD to be American or be Noel Coward to write a song, there was some kind of law. But very occasionally, a British song, one that wasn't by Noel Coward, crept out into the limelight. This is my favourite pre-Beatles British song, a song regretting the end of an affair, which as someone wrote was "the kind we would all like to be regretting".

THESE FOOLISH THINGS (1936)

Oh will you never...more
Bruce
Apr 16, 2009 Bruce rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone without an internet connection... in which case, how did you get to Goodreads?
Reading Lyrics is just an outrageously disappointing book, principally in that the only editorial activity involved here seems to have been selection. The title is horribly misleading as there is no critical assessment of lyrical art or the works contained herein, nor are the selected works representative of the 20th Century as a whole, nor are they presented in chronological order, nor is any real maturation or evolution presented. What we have here is rather a book of arbitrarily-selected lyri...more
Joy H.
TITLE: Reading Lyrics: More Than 1,000 of the Century's Finest Lyrics--a Celebration of Our Greatest Songwriters, a Rediscovery of Forgotten Masters, and an Appreciation of an Extraordinary, Popular Art Form
by Robert Gottlieb [2000] (Hardcover)
Added 4/29/11
I treasure this book. The title above explains all.
I purchased it soon after it was published in the year 2000.
I grew up in an era which appreciated the songs in the book. I enjoy browsing through the pages. I appreciate the cleverness of th...more
Amy
Dec 10, 2007 Amy marked it as to-read
This sounds wonderful! I was just today admiring Cole Porter's lyrics for "You're the Top":

You're the top!
You're the Coliseum
You're the top!
You're the Louvre Museum.
You're a melody from a symphony by Strauss
You're a Bendel bonnet
A Shakespeare sonnet,
You're Mickey Mouse!
Lee Anne
I've had this book for years, I just wanted to add it so I could point out how handy it is if you need to sing "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off" to your contrarian three year old.
Atla
Excellent resource! This book really helps vocalists and instrumentalists understand a lyricist through their body of work.
Greg
Jan 05, 2010 Greg added it
Shelves: did-not-read
I actually thought I would read this. Then I checked it out and saw it was 1000 pages or whatever. Riiiiiight.
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Robert Gottlieb has been the editor in chief of Alfred A. Knopf and The New Yorker. He is the author of Sarah: The Life of Sarah Bernhard, George Balanchine: The Ballet Maker, Lives and Letters (FSG, 2011), and Great Expectations and is the dance critic for The New York Observer.

http://us.macmillan.com/author/robert...
More about Robert Gottlieb...
Great Expectations: The Sons and Daughters of Charles Dickens Sarah: The Life of Sarah Bernhardt Food Justice George Balanchine: The Ballet Maker Reading Jazz: A Gathering of Autobiography, Reportage, and Criticism from 1919 to Now

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