"Will I like this book?" asked Deborah Harry, the still sultry lead singer of Blondie, when recently presented with an advance copy. She definitely will, and so will you!
Blondie, From Punk to the Present: A Pictorial History is the first new book on Blondie in two decades. Over three years in the making, this unique and distinctive 8 1/2" x 11" softbound book contains 514 pages of articles, essays, and photographs.
Blondie took the music world by storm in the late '70s and early '80s, and the influence of this band and its lead singer Deborah Harry is still being felt today and increasingly recognized with the passage of time. Blondie reunited in the late 1990s, produced a new album, No Exit, in 1999, and another album is due in 2003. In the meantime, we all await with anticipation as to what Blondie holds in store for us in the future.
New York City-based Blondie was formed in 1974, honing its musical skills at the famous punk rock club, CBGBs, and eventually emerging on top of the new wave scene and then crossing over to the pop music mainstream. Their self-titled first album, Blondie, reflected a punk ethos and 1960s girl group sensibilities or, the Ramones meets the Ronettes, as one music critic opined. Blondie made six albums from 1976 to 1982, the most successful being Parallel Lines, considered by many music critics to be one of the best rock albums of all time. Within this time span, from the late seventies to the early eighties, Blondie constituted a major force on the rock/pop scene, producing a string of hit singles internationally. The most well-known of these singles are the reggae-inspired "The Tide Is High," the rap song "Rapture," and the disco-flavored "Heart of Glass" and "Call Me." More recently, in 1999, the single, "Maria," debuted at number one in the United Kingdom, making this song the sixth number one single for the group there. With this hit single, Blondie reached yet another milestonethe first band to have had a number one single in each of the last three decades in the United Kingdom. So Blondie continues to make music history and the band's legacy grows. The members of Blondie are true pioneers in every sense of the word.
This comprehensive compendium is more than the usual anthology since it contains essays from such well-known insiders as Chris Stein, Blondie's co-creator, and Victor Bockris, respected music journalist and critic.
The text is divided into chronological sections covering the early days of Blondie, punk rock and new wave music a quarter of a century ago, through Deborah Harrys solo career, the bands reunion, and into the new millennium.
In addition to the comprehensive text, the book is about one-fifth photographic content, and is divided into three sections covering the band's early years, Debbie's solo period, and the band's reunion.
The large photo sections present the fine work of such internationally acclaimed rock photographers and photo documentarians as Roberta Bayley, Bob Gruen, Stephanie Chernikowski, Marcia Resnick, Tina Paul, Mick Rock, Ebet Roberts, Joe Ryan, Pete Still, Mike Morton, Sylvie Ball, Teresa Hale, and many more.
The volume is rounded out by a series of selections in an Appendices section, an extensive Bibliography, and seven indexes. The book constitutes a valuable reference resource, and encompasses the more general subject of American popular culture.