- Age Range: 6 - 9 years
- Grade Level: 1 - 2
- Hardcover: 40 pages
- Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR); First Edition edition (October 21, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0805094733
- ISBN-13: 978-0805094732
- Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 0.4 x 11.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 24 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #808,627 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Rock and Roll Highway: The Robbie Robertson Story Hardcover – October 21, 2014
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From School Library Journal
Gr 1–4—This attractive picture book biography profiles artist Robbie Robertson, founder of the Band, the group known for backing up Bob Dylan and for the songs "The Weight," "Up on Cripple Creek," and "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down." Written by Robbie Robertson's son, Sebastian, the book takes readers through Robbie's life, starting with his birth, covering his childhood in Toronto, development as a musician, and rise to fame, and ending in the mid-1970s with the Band's final performance. The use of dialogue adds to the appeal, keeping the tone lively and accessible. The tone is enthusiastic, bordering on worshipful at times ("It was now 1961 and people came from far and wide to hear the hottest, youngest guitar player around"). Gustavson's rich, nostalgia-tinged oil paintings will provoke plenty of smiles of recognition from adult rock fans, portraying as they do places such as the Brill Building, where Robbie met songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, and Big Pink, the house in Woodstock, New York, where the Band's most famous album was recorded, as well as artists with whom Robbie interacted, like Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis, and, of course, Dylan. However, these details aren't likely to resonate with the intended audience, for whom the mere mention of Music from Big Pink and "The Last Waltz" won't conjure up beloved memories. Though this is a well-illustrated and nicely told story, the subject matter will limit its appeal.—Mahnaz Dar, School Library Journal
Kids who like dancing around to their parents’ (or grandparents’) LPs may get a kick—and learn something, too—from this insightful picture-book bio of rocker Robbie Robertson, penned by his son. Robbie’s epic journey on the rock and roll highway is just that. Growing up as the child of a Mohawk Indian mother and a Jewish professional gambler, Robbie developed an interest in music that was fueled by reservation storytelling. He became a classic play-till-your-fingers-bleed fanatic, and he was soon drafted to be part of Ronnie Hawkins’ outfit. A fortuitous meeting with Bob Dylan led to the formation of The Band, a folk-infused rock group that so confounded Dylan’s fans that Robbie had to learn to play without looking at his fingers so as to dodge the thrown refuse. Author Robertson hits all the right notes, knowing just when to bend the strings to work in bits of fascinating detail or esoterica. Gustavson’s realistic watercolors have an earthy grit just perfect for this story of the roots of Americana music. Grades 1-4. --Daniel Kraus
Top customer reviews
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I purchased this in the Kindle format, which works very well. If I were still a classroom teacher, however, I would definitely want the hardcover and it would be in my library. The story is well told, the illustrations are beautiful (even on the Kindle), and the content is suitable-- even beneficial-- for children of all ages.
There are many valuable lessons that can be taken from Rock and Roll Highway. Probably the most prominent lesson is that dreams can come true with hard work and taking risks. The value of family and heritage is woven throughout the story. The interview at the end of the book is an especially nice feature. Sebastian Robertson encourages children to interview their own parents and write down their story.
My favorite line of the book comes from Robbie Robertson himself. In the interview, Sebastian asks his dad what some of his favorite books are. Robbie names his favorite authors and then goes on to say that reading helped to expand his vocabulary as well as influenced some of his songs. He finished the interview by saying, "Gotta read to write." As a reader and an author, I absolutely love this!
I recommend this book to parents, grandparents, teachers, and fans of Robbie Robertson.
**After you read it, leave a review... this is very important to any author.**
The story includes Robbie’s early inspirations, influences and motivation into a music career and his persistent work to be excellent. Loved the illustrations, the time line and personal photos, and particularly the interview at the end.
children will easily understand.
The story begins where Robbie says goodbye to The Band and life on the road. The author takes us back to the very beginning of Robbie's journey. You will enjoy learning many interesting facts that even his staunchest fans might not know. Robbie Robertson worked with music's biggest stars and kept pace with all of them. Hard work, dedication and commitment to the
dream you want to attain is the message you will glean from this biography. One look at the beautiful cover tells you it is illustrated by one of the best! The colorful and lively illustrations compliment this story perfectly. I highly recommend this biography to every young person who wants to know what it takes to realize your dreams.
Dreams can be followed and achieved!