Incoming: New Power Pop Book from Ken Sharp

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Huge volume incudes over 90 minutes’ worth of music as well.

By Blurt Staff

Power pop aficionados in the know will recognize the name Ken Sharp: he’s one of the longest-running chroniclers of (and flagwavers for) the beloved rock ‘n’ roll subgenre, authoring treatises on everyone from Small Faces and Cheap Trick to the Raspberries and Jellyfish. Now comes Play On! Power Pop Heroes: Volume Two (Jetfighter), the just-released second installment of a three-volume series, in which Sharp honors the musical innovators who built the genre’s foundation.

According to Sharp,” From the ’60s to present day, power pop music has gone on to mean different things to different people. For some, the term conjures the guitar crunch of Badfinger and Cheap Trick; for some, it’s the intricate orchestrated melodicism of the Beach Boys, the Zombies or Jellyfish; while for others it epitomizes the quirky jagged pop tread by acts like Squeeze, XTC and Fountains of Wayne. But the stylistic glue that welds it all together into one thrilling two-to-three-minute musical joyride is a collective reverence for a picture-perfect melody that will take your breath away and a supersonic hook, the size of the Empire State Building, that’s near impossible to forget.”

Below you can view a list of all the artists interviewed and reviewed in the massive, 765-page volume, which features a foreword by Rick Springfield and afterword by Cyril Jordan of the Flamin’ Groovies. Also included: over 90 tracks of rare, unreleased and live music from Jellyfish, Tommy Keene, Hawks, Rick Springfield, Glenn Tilbrook (Squeeze), Chris Difford (Squeeze), The Babys, Dwight Twilley, The Flamin’ Groovies, Shoes, Artful Dodger, Blue Ash, Piper, The Rubinoos, The Records, The Hudson Brothers, Duncan Faure (Bay City Rollers), Kasim Sulton (Utopia), The A’s, Ian Lloyd (Stories), The Toms, The Flashcubes and Richie Fontana (Piper).

Acts featured:

Flamin’ Groovies

Rick Springfield

Blue Ash

Stories

The Hudson Brothers

Cheap Trick

Pezband

Sweet

Shoes

Dwight Twilley

Bay City Rollers

The Ramones

The Rubinoos

Utopia

The Babys

Piper

Artful Dodger

XTC

Squeeze

The Records

The A’s

The Toms

The Flashcubes

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