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The Poetry of Pop Kindle Edition
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There are many perceptions into lyrics that probably have not occurred to the reader and listener.
At the end are almost 80 pages of notes and appendix to the book.
This is a study of language and music that all who listen might enjoy.
In addition, the author muses about in general: are lyrics poetry? Are they comparable in value to words of Shakespeare and others? How do words and music interact to produce an effect? and so on. Sometimes this gets a bit repetitious, but the questions are valuable ones. Bradley refers to music from the past as well as more current music, citing a wide variety of songwriters and performers.
This is not a quick read, but there is much information packed into 300 or so pages. I found his writings about lyrics (particularly about the use of rhyme) more compelling than those about music. Perhaps this reflects his background and expertise as a professor of English.
All in all, this is an impressive and interesting work for those wishing to go deeply into the subject. Recommended to readers with a far reaching interest in this subject.
This book has several sections called chapters (sorry could not resist for you musical non-book people) and they cover:
**** Lyric and song
**** Figurative Language
A lot of research went into this book. The Appendix is 60 pages long. What would really make this book astounding, would be to have this as an ebook with links to play the music the author discusses. So much of the songs were familiar, but a few were not, so some was lost on me. I can’t imagine however that royalties would be substantial, if that was the case. Oh well.
I’ve learned new words (assonance, plangent, eidetic) and note this book is not for the person who skims through a book. The author clearly knows his stuff and in the sections on Lyric, Reading and Listening he approaches this like an English major talking about all the poetic & non-poetic aspects of songs and how they are reinforced and influenced by the music.
This book is “learned” and not for those that don’t want to learn something new. At points the author dissects a song as to what works and what doesn’t and if you are like me and don’t know the song, you scoot to itunes and play a few bars, just so you know what you are missing. I also found myself buying some music as well.
As a non-music person and a technical person, I found this book captivating. If you are not technical or not musical this book may not be for you. This is not a quick read, but one to savor and a book that will take you awhile to read and absorb.