The Words and Music of Van Morrison

The Words and Music of Van Morrison

The Words and Music of Van Morrison

The Words and Music of Van Morrison


Van Morrison is primal but sophisticated; he's accessible but inscrutable; he's a complex songwriter and a raw blues shouter; he's a steady influence on the musical scene but wildly unpredictable as well, and it's these complex and often conflicting qualities that make him such a compelling subject for the Singer-Songwriter series. Journalist Erik Hage here eschews a cold, empirical study of structures and influence, and seeks instead more natural and intuitive means of appreciating all that is unique, eclectic, and surprising about Van Morrison's impressive output. In addition to covering almost all of Van Morrison's musical work and offering new readings of many iconic songs, Hage also provides a biographical introduction and a complete discography that can help listeners find new perspective on Morrison's body of work.


Although the term, singer-songwriter, might most frequently be associated with a cadre of musicians of the early 1970s such as Paul Simon, James Taylor, Carly Simon, Joni Mitchell, Cat Stevens, and Carole King, the Praeger Singer-Songwriter Collection defines singer-songwriters more broadly, both in terms of style and time period. the series includes volumes on musicians who have been active from approximately the 1960s through the present. Musicians who write and record in folk, rock, soul, hip-hop, country, and various hybrids of these styles are represented. Therefore, some of the early 1970s introspective singer-songwriters named here will be included, but not exclusively.

What do the individuals included in this series have in common? Some have never collaborated as writers, whereas others have, but all have written and recorded commercially successful and/or historically important music and lyrics at some point in their careers.

The authors who contribute to the series also exhibit diversity. Some are scholars who are trained primarily as musicians, whereas others have such areas of specialization as American studies, history, sociology, popular culture studies, literature, and rhetoric. the authors share a high level of scholarship, accessibility in their writing, and a true insight into the work of the artists they study. the authors are also focused on the output of their subjects and how it relates to their subject’s biography and the society around them; however, biography in and of itself is not a major focus of the books in this series.

Given the diversity of the musicians who are the subject of books in this series, and given the diversity of viewpoint of the authors, volumes in the . . .

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