Academic journal article Reference & User Services Quarterly

The 100 Greatest Bands of All Times: A Guide to the Legends Who Rocked the World

Academic journal article Reference & User Services Quarterly

The 100 Greatest Bands of All Times: A Guide to the Legends Who Rocked the World

Article excerpt

The 100 Greatest Bands of All Times: A Guide to the Legends Who Rocked the World. Edited by David V. Moskowitz. Santa Barbara, CA: Greenwood, 2015. 2 vols. acid free $189 (ISBN 978-1-4408-0339-0). Ebook available (978-14408-0340-6), call for pricing.

Pop music is pervasive. We listen ubiquitously, while driving, socializing, and performing countless tasks. The music is a source to which we turn when feeling sad and alone or happy and celebratory. Pop music is an important topic of inquiry because of the roles it plays in people's lives and also because it provides continuous mass cultural exploration of identity, society, and contemporary experience.

David V. Moskowitz, a professor of Music History, amassed 39 contributors from a variety of fields to compile The 100 Greatest Bands of All Times: A Guide to the Legends Who Rocked the World. The title of this ambitious guide is problematic. The introduction does not specify the scope of the bands, although the subtitle implies that it is about rock bands. Nevertheless, the types of bands covered span a wide spectrum of pop music categories, including Reggae, Rap, Punk, and Disco. The criteria used to select the greatest bands is unclear, and there will be strong dispute over the 100 bands chosen. Moskowitz wrote that the bands were chosen based on, "more than one member, record sales, influence, impact, and innovation" (viii). The "more than one member" (viii) criterion may explain why iconic artist David Bowie is excluded, but it seems incomprehensible considering his significant influence throughout decades of pop music making. With few exceptions, the bands are American or British, and male.

Moskowitz wrote ten short opening essays, to provide insight into the world in which pop music is made. The essays that describe the roles played by technologies, record labels, MTV, and YouTube are informative and provide historical perspective; but the essays that treat cultural issues, such as "Rap Crosses Over: Hip-Hop Takes Over the White America," are underdeveloped. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.