Music is something that is so personal and public at the same time. We look to music to recover from heartache. We look to music to pump us up before a big night. We look to music to isolate us and connect us and fill in the gaps. These two books revolve around music and its ability to do all these things and more.
Love is a Mix Tape by Rob Sheffield
Man-o-man, I miss the days of a good mix tape. I think that there’s something so precious about someone laboring over the perfect group of songs to communicate a mood and then delivering that package of emotion to someone else. Seriously. Even mixed CDs seem to be a dying art. So, Rob Sheffield’s Love is a Mix Tape is a perfect convergence of my two favorite things: a great song mix and a great story.
Sheffield’s memoir is told in a series of mix tapes. The book reads in a way that feels like going through your high school bestfriend’s mixed cd’s and reminiscing. “Oh my god, this song,” one of you will say. The lyrics come back to you. You collapse in giggles and start talking about some half-remembered school dance. Without giving much of his story away, this book feels just like that. Except, this man’s life is far more interesting than most (Did I mention that Mr. Sheffield writes for Rolling Stone?). Sheffield chronicles the ups and downs of a very memorable and tragic point in his life through the music that surrounded him. And, this story will having you itching to go download some new-old music.
You’ll enjoy this if: you love a good dose of music history and want to combine it with an artfully told story.
Quote: “What is love? Great minds have been grappling with this question through the ages, and in the modern era they have come up with many different answers…Love hurts. Love stinks. Love bites, love bleeds, love is the drug. The troubadours of our times all agree: They want to know what love is, and they want you to show them. But the answer is simple. Love is a mix tape”