Book Report: Making Records By Phil Ramone & Charles L. Granata

making-records-by-phil-ramone-and-charles-l-granataI usually start a post like this commenting on where or when I got the book I’m reading, which is, in this case, Phil Ramone’s Making Records: The Scenes Behind The Music with Charles L. Granata. Honestly? I can’t remember in this case. The book came out in 2007 and I’ve had it in my garage for a while, so maybe it came from the discount area of Barnes & Noble or…who knows? What does matter, is that I moved this to the top of the To Read pile because, well, I wanted to.

I love reading books about music like Sonic Boom or Off My Rocker because everyone who was super into music has wildly unique stories about not just the making of records, but the people they worked with. As it happens, Phil Ramone not only helped revolutionize how records were made, but also worked on records by some of the most iconic and beloved musicians in the history of music including Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, Barbara Streisand, Aretha Franklin, Paul Simon, Paul McCartney, Billy Joel, Elton John and plenty of others.

Continue reading Book Report: Making Records By Phil Ramone & Charles L. Granata

Four Books I Liked By Joe Hill, Erik Larson, Tina Fey & Roger Moore

Like any hopeful reader, I have boxes of books just waiting to be read in my garage and even a fair number waiting in the digital realm. There’s not much rhyme or reason to which ones I choose or why they take me so long to read, but I figured I’d put a few thoughts down about these four books I’ve finished in the relatively recent past including books by Joe Hill, Erik Larson, Tina Fey and Roger Moore. Continue reading Four Books I Liked By Joe Hill, Erik Larson, Tina Fey & Roger Moore

Riding With The King: The Stand (1978)

the-stand-stephen-king-2 You’ve seen my write a million times that I’m a slow reader. Sometimes a book will grab me, though, and I roll right through it, no matter the length. That’s the experience I had reading Stephen King’s Under The Dome and even the much shorter Dolores Claiborne, but nowhere near what happened with The Stand.

Looking back, it took me a while to get through Gerald’s Game and then I started reading this one BACK IN MAY. Sure, it’s an exceptionally long book — up there with Dome as the longest I’ve ever read — but I kept finding myself distracted by comics, TV, movies and a few other books like Clive Barker’s Inhuman Condition and Jason Zinoman’s Shock Value. Continue reading Riding With The King: The Stand (1978)

Halloween Scene: Shock Value By Jason Zinoman

shock-valueIf you’re keeping track, and I’m not sure why you would be at this point, I’m still muddling through Stephen King’s The Stand. And yet, I stray away from time to time to check out other books like Jason Zinoman’s Shock Value, which I stumbled across while looking for various horror films in my library’s database. With a subtitle like How A Few Eccentric Outsiders Gabe Us Nightmares, Conquered Hollywood, And Invented Modern Horror, how could I not bite, especially around Halloween! Continue reading Halloween Scene: Shock Value By Jason Zinoman

Riding With The King: Gerald’s Game (1992)

gerald's gameWhile reading the intro to my copy of Dolores Claiborne, I saw that Gerald’s Game acts as a kind of companion novel. So, being a bit of a completest and possibly a crazy person, I picked up a copy along with Bag Of Bones and Green Mile on eBay.

I’ve got to say, compared to all of the Stephen King books I’ve listened to or read since getting on this kick starting with Joyland, Game proved to be the hardest one to get through. I might not have been the biggest fan of The Gunslinger, but at 250-ish pages, I was still able to knock it out pretty quickly. The same could not be said for Gerald’s Game, but I was very happy I stuck with it. Continue reading Riding With The King: Gerald’s Game (1992)

Riding With The King: Dolores Claiborne (1992)

dolores claiborneRight after not being super into The Gunslinger, I dove into Dolores Claiborne and basically tore through it as quickly as I could. I wasn’t sure if that would be the case when I read a little bit about the book and realized there were exactly no page or chapter breaks because it’s one woman’s account of the tragedies and triumphs of her life. Continue reading Riding With The King: Dolores Claiborne (1992)

Riding With The King: The Dark Tower – The Gunslinger

dark tower my coverI am on a crazy reading kick these days. I don’t think I’ve finished this many novels in such a short period of time since college. The main difference? This time they’re all books I want to read. They also all happen to be written by Mr. Stephen King.

As anyone paying attention to UM will notice, I listened to Joyland and Revival which launched me into reading Mr. Mercedes (mostly on my phone, but I also got a hard copy from the library). After that, I was curious enough to jump into a realm I have very little experience and interest in: fantasy. Yup, I read The Gunslinger.

Going in I knew just a few things about this book. First, it’s the beginning of an epic series King wrote over decades that brings in various characters and ideas from his other books. Second, my buddy Sean didn’t like how it ended. And third, Marvel made a bunch of comics based on the main character, Roland the Gunslinger. It’s about the last Gunslinger chasing the mysterious and supernatural Man in Black across a big desert and presumably someone wants to get to this tower. Continue reading Riding With The King: The Dark Tower – The Gunslinger