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The Sound of Our Town

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  54 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
From the G Clefs of the mid-1950s to the Dresden Dolls of today, from the down & dirty to the royalty of rock, here's what's been rockin' Boston for the past fifty years.
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published September 15th 2007 by Commonwealth Editions (first published September 1st 2007)
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Brian DiMattia
Jun 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I can't give you an unbiased review of this book. It isn't five stars for the writing, although Milano does some solid research, reporting, and reminiscing, and he tries to give each generation their fair share of space. My favorite anecdote was the revelation that surf rock legend Dick Dale, a Quincy native, developed his signature style after a childhood of listening to his Lebanese father's records of Middle Eastern folk music. Now go listen to "Misirlou" again and it'll be a totally differen ...more
Oct 03, 2007 rated it really liked it
His topic is too broad. Covering the Boston Rock scene over the last fifty years is so big that he can devote a max of three pages for the greats and less than a paragraph for the run of the mill band. It was a trip down memory lane reading the section on the 90's scene (that was when I spent most of my time in the Boston club scene). A lot of bands mentioned that I hadn't thought of for a while. Everyone has a favorite band that didn't make the cut.

If you were in/around the Boston scene in the
Mar 16, 2009 rated it really liked it
I lived and breathed the Boston music scene during the 1980's and continue to support when I visit Beantown. Brett is to be commended for his time and effort in putting this wonderful book together.
Andre Diehl
Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Most of the writing is meh, I would've been happier with an annotated timeline.

Things I learned:
Bullet LaVolta > fugazi.
Freddy Cannon is amazing
Rob Zombie is from Haverhill
I would be completely happy never having to hear/think about the Dresden Dolls ever again.
Jan 12, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: music fans
Brett Milano's History of of Boston Rock music is largely focused on punk, post punk, and early alt-rock. It starts Roxbury's soulful quartets of the 50s before covering the 60s, and early 70s arena rock bands but the book does seem to carry a bit of a bias towards the scene from roughly 1980-2000. Interestingly the beginning of this range coincides with the author's move to Boston.

It's a ook that makes me want to buy music, and that's great but it's not as inspiring as I'd hoped. It would have
Oct 15, 2007 rated it liked it
where this book is great is in its middle chapters. here light is shed on some of the lesser known (nationally) groups such as willie alexander, the nervous eaters, and the neighborhoods. its the seedy side of a city always trying to cover up its seedy sides. the rest of the book, not so interesting. we all know the j geils story. the mission of burma story. the aerosmith story. but for those middle chapters, well worth checking out.
Oct 16, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Emily
A great history of the Boston rock & roll scene from the doo-wop '50s through the Bosstown '60s, the Rat '70s-'80s to the present day. The author (who I actually met at the Brian Wilson Smile show in Boston several years ago) does a great job relating the story of bands such as Aerosmith, the Cars, the Remains & the Dresden Dolls, among others.
Ray Charbonneau
Sep 16, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction, music
A quick overview of 50 years of Boston rockish music. On the one hand, I was there for a chunk of the time, so it was nice to revisit familiar territory. On the other, there wasn't much depth anywhere, so I didn't learn that much that was new. The writing was serviceable, but not as exciting as the music. Use the book as a record guide, and go find the music!
Marilyn Mccarthy
Nov 20, 2007 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this because I was into the Boston music scene during the late 70s and I read about a lot of the bands I knew and used to go see all the time. It was a fun time.
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