Detroit 67: The Year That Changed Soul Kindle Edition
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About the Author
Stuart Cosgrove is a professional journalist and commentator living in Perth, Scotland. He currently serves as an executive for the television station Channel 4 and presents Scotland’s most successful radio show, Off the Ball.
Cosgrove’s previous experience includes working as a staff writer and media editor for UK music paper NME.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
- File size : 19043 KB
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Publication date : February 19, 2015
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Publisher : Clayton Media and Publishing (February 19, 2015)
- Print length : 575 pages
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- ASIN : B00TTBKCNQ
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,734,452 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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The recent Kathryn Bigelow film about the “Algiers Motel Incident” covers some of this ground, rather controversially, but without the music in the foreground. Cosgrove risks ridicule by proposing in page after page that the firing of Florence Ballard from the Supremes parallels what was happening in the USA during 1967, but his general thesis is convincing enough, that the Detroit riots, and the gradual professionalization of Motown, split the city and the music industry into ranks of caste and social class, so that Berry Gordy and Diana Ross wound up leaving Detroit behind for the greener pastures of LA. Stuart Cosgrove has a firm grasp on the history and politics of Detroit, and he loves him his Motown, but at some points one has to wonder if a black journalist might not have been able to serve this material better, just as Bigelow’s film might have been better with a black director? But he can certainly spin many narrative lines at once! For the first time I was able to put it together about the many deaths that plagued Motown during this tumultuous year, and the tragedies such as Tammi Terrell’s onstage collapse.
How is it I never knew that Marvin Gaye began writing his landmark 1971 LP “What’s Going On?” in 1967? (Berry Gordy, his brother in law, tried to dissuade him, telling him he was a pop singer and people didn’t want pop singers jawing about such hot topics as police brutality.) At the back of all the stories we hear not only about racism and economic violence, but we hear always the echoes of VietNam and the protests against an unjust war.
Cosgrove breaks this down month by month, and goes even further by assigning a general topic, sometimes an impressionistic one, to each chapter: August is “Ordeal,” and September is “Surveillance,” for example. This novelistic method works best as a way to tell the story of oversized people, like Gladys Knight, or weird Gothic urban tales like the Algiers Motel murders. Oddly enough, there isn’t enough about the music here. What was it that made Motown so infectious? It’s almost as if Cosgrove avoids employing much critical vocabulary in order to avoid the fanboy drivel that plagues so many 33 1/3 books, but he goes too far in the opposite direction. And he overuses a couple of favorite adjectives, especially “towering.” They’re all of them divas in this book—not only Diana and Martha Reeves, but people like Aretha Franklin and Leni Sinclair. Cosgrove shows how, as the year progresses, anger and despair gave rise at Motown to a new, rockier sound, one with psychedelic edges, and here his hero proves to be the songwriter/producer Norman Whitfield. But in every chapter there are a few Motown singles which you and I have never heard of and he describes them with enough grace to make you want to find them instantly. So I had quite an education reading this book.
Top reviews from other countries
I was also a bit irritated by the many typographical errors in this kindle edition.