Friday, October 9, 2009

Let It Bleed / A Review

Author: Ethan A. Russell, Gerard Van Der Leun
Photographed by: Ethan Rusell
Format: Hardcover: 256 pages.
Springboard Pr (11/02/2009)

Book Description:

LET IT BLEED takes you where no Rolling Stones book has before. Author and photographer Ethan Russell was one of only sixteen people--including the Rolling Stones--who made up the 1969 tour. He was with them in their hotel rooms, at rehearsals, and on stage. He tells the story of this monumental and historic tour firsthand, including recollections from band members, crew, security, and other sixties icons--like Abbie Hoffman and Little Richard--they met along the way. And he also includes amazing photos of the performers who toured with the Stones that year: the legendary Tina Turner and B. B. King. Through vivid quotes taken from his interviews with the band and crew, and through more than 220 revealing photographs, Russell takes you behind the scenes for an uncensored look inside the Rolling Stones' world at the end of the sixties. It was an idealistic time, with an overarching belief that music could bring us all together. But the events that led to the terrible violence and stabbing death at Altamont would change rock and roll forever.

About the Author:
Ethan Russell is a multi-Grammy nominated photographer and director. He is the only photographer to have shot album covers of The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and The Who. Ethan produced music videos with Emmylou Harris, Joni Mitchell, Paul Simon, kd lang, Rosanne Cash, Hank Williams, Jr. and Randy Travis, among others. He is also an award winning creative director and the author of Dear Mr. Fantasy (Houghton Mifflin 1985).

My Review:

Let It Bleed (The Rolling Stones, Altamont, and the End of the Sixties) is a comprehensive look at the remarkable 1969 Rolling Stones tour. Photographer, Ethan Russell, has documented with intimate, detailed photographs and interviews, the story few people have seen or have known before now. He takes the reader behind the scenes and gives them a firsthand look into the lives and journey of one of the most legendary bands to ever perform on any stage.

The infamous Altamont rock concert at the Altamont Speedway in northern California, held on December 6, 1969, is also featured in this large "coffee-table" style book. Headlining that night was The Rolling Stones, and several other famous bands, with the Rolling Stones taking the stage as the final act. Violence erupted during the concert, leaving several dead, including one fatal stabbing. Many had thought this 300,000 fan event would be another Woodstock, but instead, became a tragic experience for both the fans and for The Rolling Stones.

I am amazed at the numerous (on almost every page) personal, and many times intense photographs. I loved this fantastic pictorial documentary and will leave it on a table in my home for other fans to enjoy. I would definitely recommend it.

(Thank you to Hachette Book Group for my review copy.)

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