- Series: Rock of Ages
- Hardcover: 192 pages
- Publisher: Rodale Books (November 28, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1594863695
- ISBN-13: 978-1594863691
- Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.7 x 7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 19 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,897,531 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs by Derek and the Dominos (Rock of Ages) Hardcover – November 28, 2006
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Thank god for Bobby Whitlock. The keyboard player, second lead singer, and song coauthor of the short-lived, fondly remembered Derek and the Dominos comes from a long line of, as he says, "river rats, whores, and moonshiners," and as Reid's principal informant for this jolly rock-album history, he's a gold mine. He was raffish to the max, and his band mates weren't stiffs, either. Drummer Jim Gordon was already on the road to homicidal dementia, bassist Carl Radle was gigging with all the rising stars of southern rock, of whom guitarist Duane Allman was indisputably the biggest and brightest. And then there was the group's raison d'etre, archetypal rock guitar god Eric Clapton, sodden in love with best friend George Harrison's wife but at the top of his game on his ax. There isn't all that much about actually making the great record here, but the horror show of substance abuse and poor impulse control that Reid shows began, for most of the band's members, before they were born, is appallingly amusing. Ray Olson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
About the Author
JAN REID is the author or coauthor of eight books, including The Improbable Rise of Redneck Rock and The Bullet Meant for Me. He is a founding contributor and writer-at-large for Texas Monthly and has also written for Esquire, the New York Times, GQ, and Men's Journal. He lives in Austin, Texas.
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Reid relies heavily on Bobby Whitlock's recollections. As with any storyteller who is involved in a story, the narrative is shaped by their recollection and how they want to appear in the story. Yet the story is extremely valuable for showing the path each of the other members of the band took on their journey to Criteria Studios in the Fall of 1970. Of special interest to me was some of the story about Duane Allman's father that I had not known and the stories about Delaney and Bonnie Bramlett. Of interest is the way he speaks extensively about the relationship between Eric and Delaney, but he avoids mention of Bonnie as much as possible. In addition he-like everyone else has been unable or unwilling to untangle the reasons the friendship came apart.
The book is great on the interpersonal angles, but weak on any kind of analysis of the recordings themselves and the process. This is an especially tragic omission since Tom Dowd has passed and can no longer fill in the details. In addition, the aborted sessions for the second record are given a quick brush and put away.
I recommend the book as a great read. I wish Whitlock would write his book
I don't doubt that there are minor errors in a book of this type. In spite of that, I found it extremely interesting and a valuable tool in helping to understand why the music of that era was so incredibly good.
It also was a great, concise guide to available recordings that feature these performers - for example, the epic Hip-O-Select "Mad Dogs and Englishmen" box set.
In addition, this book has led me on a quest for recordings featuring the now unmistakeable talents of Jim Gordon.
I highly recommend this book as a starting point for expanding your appreciation of music.
There's a lot of emphasis on the tabloid friendly tale of stealing a friend's wife. But it doesn't really talk alot about the music in anything other than passing. The music is always the punch line to the motivation for creating it. Fair enough, as this is a result of life in the world of a musician.
There ae several small gaffs (Duane Allman is credited with using a plastic medicine bottle for slide when it was a glass bottle. Plastic is not a good choice.) But none of these are really too bad.
The one thing missing is any kind of pure critical analysis of the music itself. Also missing is any real telling of how the record was technically made. So don't look for a scholarly look at the record itself. This you'll have to find elsewhere.
Don't let these misgivings stop you from buying the book. It's a quick and enjoyable read, if somewhat superficial in places.
It took the author more than 100 pages to come to the point; Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs. On it's way to it Reid scatters erroneous facts about well known artists. Has Reid any knowledge of what was going on during this chapter in Clapton's live? No way!
At the moment a young English bloke is writing a biography about the band. Tom Caswell started writing in 2014 and is allready sharing wonderful material on his Facebookpage. Caswell shows that you have to do your research and that it takes time. I bet this book will shatter Reid's