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PostPosted: 09 May 2006 10:48    Post subject: Laurel Canyon-The Inside Story of Rock and Rollís Legendary Neighborhood Reply with quote

Title: Laurel Canyon-The Inside Story of Rock and Roll's Legendary Neighborhood
Author: Michael Walker
Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Faber & Faber (May 16, 2006)
Language: English
ISBN: 0571211496

So you think you know about the history of rock and roll? I would consider myself very
knowledgeable with the exception of an entire block of time in the 60s that was essential
in the development of music.

Laurel Canyon-The Inside Story of Rock and Roll's Legendary Neighborhood fills in
the gaps for those of us that think San Francisco and the Haight-Ashbury scene got things
started. Granted the SF element was a key factor that was very important, but 396 miles
down the coast there was a parallel universe taking shape that was of equal importance.

My interest in this book and the subject matter happened because of my fascination with
the story of Crosby, Stills and Nash, Jackson Browne, and The Eagles. All three were a big
part of this bubbling counterculture stuck in a canyon just outside one of the world
centers for entertainment, Los Angeles.

Author Michael Walker does a nice job of taking you back to when it all began with an in
depth look at the stars that made this place so unique and legendary. There was a lot more
to Laurel Canyon than Joni Mitchell, Mama Cass Elliot, and CSN; there were the first
groupies, producers, moviemakers, and many others that had their own stories to tell. The
one all time rock great that was probably the most important piece of this puzzle besides
Cass was Frank Zappa. Zappa and his wife hosted one of the first ever rock communes. In
this day, a SWAT team would be there burning it down to ashes.

I consumed this book like a child hungry for knowledge. It provided me with an education
and enlightenment into the music business, as I never had before. I find it amazing that
some of the people that were part of that whole period are still around today to tell the
tale. I felt as if I was right there front row and center watching it all unfold before
me. Even though there were strange happenings and drugs involved there was innocence about
the entire thing. Of course, that all changed once cocaine made its introduction then
people started getting too weird and everything got scary, hence Laurel Canyon was never
the same. The rock 'n' roll nirvana did not last, alas, it never does. There is so much
more in between all of that, it all comes together just as a storybook should. The fact
that this book is all based on true events and accounts from the people that were there
making it happen and witnessing it, makes that much more enthralling of read.

I highly recommend this book for anyone that has an attraction to what goes on behind the
music. Michael Walker has written the bible of LA music. From cover to cover, it is an
absorbing and fascinating read, unforgettable.

Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck

May 8, 2006



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