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Great History of Rock and Country Through Hilburn's Eyes
on October 13, 2009
Cornflakes with John Lennon is less a memoir of Robert Hilburn and more a history lesson of Contemporary music through his experiences. Most well known as the Country and Rock music reviewer for The Los Angeles Times, Hilburn gives us a good glimpse into his life experiences that started his passion for R&B and Rock music. He finishes up telling us of his experiences with many musicians he covered and the inside look he had into the music industry and its many changes.
Some of the musicians and bands you will hear the most about include: John Lennon, Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley, Bruce Springsteen, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, The Beatles, Micheal Jackson, Janis Joplin, Elton John, Chuck D, Ice Cube, Jack White, and many more.
The viewpoints on the music industry mostly come from the views of musicians and insiders more than Hilburns personal opinion.
As a fan of rock history, this ranks right up there with the 20th anniversary 2-hour TV special of The Rolling Stones Magazine in 1987, hosted by Dennis Hopper. The insight was wonderful. Hilburn's experiences shares rock 'n roll alongside historical insights from his experiences at the time. It brings depth and meaning into the subject with a personal touch. He shows a willingness to be open minded to genres and types of popular music besides rock and roll. Hilburn goes into detail the lengths he went to to decide the legitimacy of Rap. He also discusses the criticism he received for going against societies views at the time. I greatly respect Hilburn's expectation that music should be more than superficial subjects. That music should at times be deep and give the listener something for it's soul.
As mentioned by Bono in the introduction, when he wanted to get deeper into Hilburn's life, the subject changed. Hilburn does give you bits of his life that relate to his music experiences, but little past that.
Corn Flakes With John Lennon is an excellent look into popular music's past and I highly recommend it.