Shout!: The Beatles in Their Generation Paperback – Feb 15 2005
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"The best, most detailed, and most serious biography of the Beatles and their time."
-- Chicago Sun-Times
"Nothing less than thrilling...the definitive biography."
-- The New York Times
About the Author
Philip Norman is a journalist and a novelist who in 1968 was assigned to cover the Beatles’ own business utopia, Apple Corps, from the inside. He is the author of Rave On: The Biography of Buddy Holly and many other books.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
First : you wouldn't believe how good and precise is the account of the Beatles beginnings. A good part of the book takes place before the big hit Love me do, so if you really are interested in how did it all started, this book is a must-read.
Second : this book gives A LOT of details about the managing of the Beatles, from the very beginning to the Apple corporation and to the breakup. Lot's of contracts are clearly described, numbers are showed, every businessman who came close to the Beatles has his biography in the book. Actually, the way Norman puts his energy in describing the whole management thing seems to make him forget about saying anything about the music...
If you are a longtime fan of the Beatles and know their history, you can read this book for extra details you won't find in other books. P.Norman's research is quite thorough, and will please someone who wants to know more about Brian Epstein, for example, or about Apple.
If you're looking for a really good book about the music of the Beatles, you're wasting your time with "Shout!". Your best bet would then be "The Art of the Beatles". THIS book is terrific.
into my cranium, I read Philip Norman's biography of the
The story of the Beatles is known worldwide and I'll not
repeat any of it here, except to say that Norman gives
each phase of the group's life and career equal time and
equal detail. Showbiz bios too often linger on an act's
childhood and background (to prove that they've researched
extensively?) or are simply a cash-in on current success
and add nothing to the story that one couldn't get from
People Magazine (see bios of Selena, etc.).
If the book has a fault, it is that Norman has obviously joined the "John was the real leader and only decent songwriter" camp and takes swipes at McCartney's personality and music early and often. This is another subject that has been covered ad infinitum, and I will add only that this bias detracts my overall rating of this otherwise excellent and detailed work.
I enjoyed how Norman breathed life into the years when the Beatles were touring and recording. You can almost hear the banter down in Studio One at Abbey Road, or the arguments at Apple, or the wind-bitten playing at the rooftop gig. The subtitle, "The Beatles in Their Generation", is an apt description of the world described in this book. Whether it's a particular street in London, a cheap dive in Hamburg, or the sumptuous apartment of some pop star, you understand the Fab Four's presence and influence throughout. Norman describes the events of the Sixties through the lens of the Beatles' collectively brilliant existence - so brilliantly described that, even today, I cannot think about the Sixties without some reference to the Beatles. Every turn in those eight years leads, inexorably, to the townhouse studio at Abbey Road.
Written soon after Lennon's murder in 1980, the book is something of a tribute to him. Norman doesn't spare criticism of any of the Fab Four as frail human beings, but as failings go, it seems like Lennon's more bone-headed moves (his "Jesus" remarks in 1966, the weirdness in which he and Yoko Ono indulged for years - not to mention the drunken episodes in Hamburg) deserve more understanding than McCartney's taste for musical sentimentality and social acquisitiveness.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Even though I knew how the story ended, it really shook me when it reached its ineveitable conclusion. Read morePublished on Aug. 16 2001 by Magic Mike
This book is a wonderful veiw into the Beatles lives. It starts right at the begining with Johns birth and goes all the way to their final break up. Read morePublished on Jan. 19 2001 by Natasha
this is a good book, but norman really drags it out! no offence to any one (belive me i am CRAZY about the beatles! ) but this book is just plain boring! Read morePublished on March 30 2000 by laurel
This is an excellent book for both die hard Beatles fans and those who are simply interested in the phenomenon that swept the world in the 60s and still continues to exert... Read morePublished on March 22 2000 by Lesley West
Norman did a good job with this concise, basic biography. He tends to dwell a bit much on bit players and business deals, but he's certainly done his homework. Read morePublished on July 15 1999
There are probably factual errors in here, there are books which examine the Beatles in more detail, there are other points of view. Read morePublished on June 17 1999
Not only is this thoroughly researched biography a thorough portrayal of the personalities of perhaps the most musically and culturally pop phenomena of the latter 20th century, it... Read morePublished on April 13 1999
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