It was a very good year

20 07 2019

1971 – Never a Dull Moment: Rock’s Golden Year by David Hepworth

 

The Sixties ended a year late – on New Year’s Eve 1970, when Paul McCartney initiated proceedings to wind up The Beatles. Music would never be the same again.
The next day would see the dawning of a new era. 1971 saw the release of more monumental albums than any year before or since and the establishment of a pantheon of stars to dominate the next forty years – Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Marvin Gaye, Carole King, Joni Mitchell, Rod Stewart, the solo Beatles and more.
January that year fired the gun on an unrepeatable surge of creativity, technological innovation, blissful ignorance, naked ambition and outrageous good fortune. By December rock had exploded into the mainstream.
How did it happen? This book tells you how. It’s the story of 1971, rock’s golden year.

This is the kind of thing David Hepworth does extremely well. His detailed, month by month exposition of all the remarkable musical things which happened in the golden year of 1971 really takes some beating. From the Rolling Stones to Bowie, The Who to the Carpenters and Don McLean to Carole King he covers them all. It’s a decent thesis and the evidence is all pretty powerful just by by the sheer volume and quality of the music but at the end of it, this is really just an arbitrary 12 month period in the great history of music. Still, all the stories are outstanding – well worth a read.

 

four stars

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