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When Stars Were In Reach: The Who at Union Catholic High School - November 29, 1967 (Black and White Version) Paperback – February 10, 2013
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About the Author
The author, a fifty-nine year old pension consultant in his day job, is intimately familiar with the book's milieu. Michael Rosenbloom’s extended adolescence included a seven year period (1968-1975) during which he traveled the length of the eastern seaboard of North America from Montreal, to Tuscaloosa, Alabama attending thirty-five Who concerts, meeting Pete Townshend on two occasions, John Entwistle once and collecting Who vinyl, posters and memorabilia. After four decades or so, the author has finally decided to tie a ribbon on that period of his life by recreating a scene not unlike those of his misspent youth.
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"When Stars Were in Reach - The Who at Union Catholic High School - November 29, 1967" chronicles a night when an 'on-the-rise-to-stardom' rock band played a rock and roll concert in a suburban New Jersey high school gym all because of a group of determined students to make their wishes come true!
The author, Michael Rosenbloom, whom spent several years painstakingly researching the events that lead up to the concert , conveys a very intriguing and fun account of the experiences of every rock fan's dream come true, and the intense impact of music on lives of the teens of the late 1960's era.
He tracked down many students and administrators that made it happen, those that were there, and even the ones that took photographs of the show and also of The Who backstage! If there was ever a movie made based on this book it would be even better document of what The Who were all about than their 1979 documentary, 'The Kids Are Alright'. Why? Because a fans account is what was missing in that film which even legendary fan Irish Jack alluded to at one time.
How did Michael Rosenbloom come about the idea to go with this particular story? Let him explain himself.
"I stumbled onto the story. I had come to the conclusion that at age 56 and with my wife or kids not interested in or knowledgeable about my music or my memorabilia collection, it was time to start selling some Who posters on ebay. Once I was "gone," they wouldn't know they had anything of value so why not start "cashing in some chips" while I can still enjoy the benefits. The guy to whom I sold two posters sent me an e-mail containing some New York City area Who concert posters from his collection, simply for my viewing enjoyment. Lo and behold, I saw the poster of the Union Catholic show that adorns the front cover of "When Stars Were in Reach." I was smitten and immediately drawn back in. I said: "Wow, The Who performing in a high school, in a Catholic high school no less! I realized that given the huge role The Who played in my youth, it was time to pay tribute to the band by writing about them in some bite-sized fashion. Certainly a lot more fitting than selling my Who collection! And the concert at Union Catholic would be the perfect vehicle for this. November of 1967 was the period during which I was getting into them. So I relished the opportunity to take on this project."
The writing isn't the best. The author "recreates" conversations that must have taken place among the various friends and students at the school, and his dialogs are a bit stilted.
But I recommend the book for anyone interested in the 60's and the Who.
Still an OK book. I just want to hear something more about the kids and the school that booked The Who and Cream.