Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968

Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968

A mind-expanding dive into a lost chapter of 1968, featuring the famous and forgotten: Van Morrison, folkie-turned-cult-leader Mel Lyman, Timothy Leary, James Brown, and many more Van Morrison's Astral Weeks is an iconic rock album shrouded in legend, a masterpiece that has touched generations of listeners and influenced everyone from Bruce Springsteen to Martin Scorsese A mind-expanding dive into a lost chapter of 1968, featuring the famous and forgotten: Van Morrison, folkie-turned-...

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Title:Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968
Author:Ryan H. Walsh
Rating:
Genres:Music
ISBN:0735221340
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:368 pages pages

Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968 Reviews

  • Tad Richards
    Mar 18, 2018
    You might expect a book that takes Van Morrison?s legendary album title for its own, and suggests that it will be about Morrison?s time in Boston creating this breakthrough music, to actually be about that. The bad news is that if that?s what the book is supposed to be about, ...
  • Matt
    Mar 09, 2018
    My friend just wrote this one up: http://artsfuse.org/168480/book-music... And so did I, for The Baffler (!!!): https://thebaffler.com/latest/lost-in... ...
  • Casey
    Apr 22, 2018
    Should really be more clear up front that it is more about the Boston scene in 68 than anything else. Super misleading. ...
  • Eric
    Apr 20, 2018
    Originally a smaller piece on Van Morrison & his time in Boston during the summer of 1968 leading to his recording in the fall, in New York City, the landmark record album of the title. Those stories are fantastic & thrilling to read, evoking a Boston & Cambridge from anoth...
  • Whitney
    Apr 08, 2018
    This book talked about a LOT of things I love. I did want to hear a little more about the general population and their experience of Boston in 1968 in contrast to the hippies and cult members and musicians he talks about here. The chapter on movies and the Boston strangler was my favor...
  • Jay Gabler
    Mar 21, 2018
    Not for the casual fan of Van the Man, but people who love Astral Weeks (the album) or follow the Boston music scene will appreciate this detailed history. I reviewed Astral Weeks (the book) for The Current. ...
  • Richard
    Mar 11, 2018
    This was a truly absorbing read. A model of blending cultural & music history. ...
  • Larry
    Mar 15, 2018
    This was really awesome. (it happens to be about one of my top 5 albums and a place I've lived so the subject matter was a sure hit but it surpassed my expectations) ...
  • Jason Rabin
    Apr 07, 2018
    Not just a deep dive into the Boston origins of Van Morrison's Astral Weeks, but a mosaic of the music and cultural scene surrounding them--centered in 1968, with flashbacks, flash forwards and on-theme digressions. As a participant in the local music scene who wasn't yet born in 1968 ...
  • Christine
    Jan 20, 2018
    I received a free copy of this book from Goodreads Giveaways. There were so many interesting stories and back stories in this book, that it either needed to be longer or to shorten its scope. The Fort Hill Community alone could have taken up the entire book, as could Van Morrison a...
  • Alan
    May 05, 2018
    This was one of the most fascinating and interesting books I have read in a long time. It's a snapshot of music and cultural history in Boston in the late 1960s. Yet it was a part of its history that until now I was totally unaware. It seems Van Morrison wrote and performed one of ...
  • Sarah
    Apr 14, 2018
    Just what I needed to read. Sometimes to0 much detail - for me, as I was hoping for more of the mystical and less of the commune & such details, but overall, very good. Yay, Boston. And so interesting a concept, using Van Morrison as a nexus. ...
  • Martin
    Apr 29, 2018
    I enjoyed the book but the title is a misnomer. It is a collection of chapters on the various counterculture happenings in Boston in 1968. It spends a lot more time on the Mel Lyman cult than it does on Astral Weeks but it is never less than interesting. ...
  • John Heiskell
    May 06, 2018
    Whenever I ponder my favorite albums, Astral Weeks has consistently been near the top. I really wanted to like this book but it was not exactly what I expected. I thought it would be more mostly about Van Morrison, his career at that point, and the recording sessions for the album. ...
  • Django Laić
    Apr 24, 2018
    Ryan H. Walsh ?Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968? ? dogodilo se u Bostonu Knjiga novinara i glazbenika Ryana H. Walsha vodi nas pedeset godina u pro?lost na ulice Bostona i detaljno i s puno ?ara opisuje mjesto i turbulento vrijeme u kojem su se zbivale razne ludosti, a...
  • Dachokie
    Mar 25, 2018
    You Had to Have Been There ? This book was reviewed as part of Amazon's Vine program which included a free copy of the book. When I think of the counter-culture in the late 1960s, the city of Boston doesn?t come to mind, but Ryan Walsh?s book, ASTRAL WEEKS, proves Boston ha...
  • Andrea
    Mar 30, 2018
    I did not expect it to be so beautifully written. Background: I graduated HS in the summer of 1968 in a town nearby to Boston and hid in my room and lived thru my radio. I visualized a lot of this since I could not get to Boston then. The story is really more about Boston popular...
  • Mike Murray
    May 03, 2018
    The Van stuff was great, but the Boston stuff wasn't as interesting. ...
  • Sumeet
    Apr 29, 2018
    This book a treat to read if you're a 60s head and have seen a lot of films and documentaries about Woodstock, Leary and the usual subjects. This book uses these usual 60s references as time markers to tell you deeper, lesser known facts. It is a kaleidoscope of recollections fro...
  • Brad
    Apr 03, 2018
    The best kind of history book - one that begins as a focus on a specific topic and uses it to tell a broader story of the world of its time. ...
  • Jeff
    Mar 25, 2018
    A mistake Should have read the description more carefully. If you care about Van Morrison or folk music scene in Boston in 1968, it's probably good. I'm not at all interested in either. ...
  • Glenn
    Apr 12, 2018
    This is a (too?) detailed account of events that occurred in Boston/Cambridge in 1968. A chapter is devoted to each of: the end of the folk scene, Van Morrison's band, the groundbreaking TV show "What's Happening Mr. Silver?", the opening of the Boston Tea Party, the start of WBCN, the...
  • Ed Mckeon
    Mar 21, 2018
    I was 15 in 1968. I remember attending a union gathering with my parents and wandering around the streets in my paisley shirt, dodging in and out of head shops, record stores and hippie boutiques only now realizing that the tiny bit of Bosstown that I experienced was like a turntable s...
  • Faith
    Mar 31, 2018
    I don't know for whom this book is intended. The title is clearly designed to lure fans of Van Morrison, and the lure worked on me. However, there is actually very little about Morrison and his work in this book. Instead there is a lot of random information about people and events in B...
  • Tina Ambury
    Apr 07, 2018
    Weirdly informative. ...
  • Ian Hamilton
    Mar 22, 2018
    Walsh doesn't really succeed at formulating an effective overarching thesis. There are too many disparate ideas that make the read a little disjointed. Too much emphasis is placed on the Fort Hill Community; I think there's a good reason why this group has been largely forgotten by his...
  • John Spiller
    Apr 30, 2018
    Before purchasing "Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968" by Ryan Walsh, you need to know a few things. (Don't worry, there's no spoilers.) First, it is not one of those book length explorations of the making of a classic rock album in the style of the 33 1/3 Series. Yes, Walsh explor...
  • Jack Saltzberg
    Apr 05, 2018
    What do The Jim Kweskin Jug Band, The Velvet Underground, Van Morrison, the Mob, The Bosstown sound, and an LSD based cult have in common? They were all active in Boston in 1968. I, like many others, read this because I thought it was going to be about the making of the album Astral ...
  • Ted Myers
    Apr 29, 2018
    Maybe its because I was part of the Boston rock scene in the mid-sixties and knew or knew of many of the characters and events in this book, but this is one of the most engrossing works of nonfiction I have ever read. Ryan Walsh does a masterful job of weaving together many seemingly u...
  • Steve Sanders
    Mar 26, 2018
    In Astral Weeks, Ryan Walsh gives us parallel portraits of two gifted musicians ?Van Morrison and Mel Lyman?and the divergent ways in which they responded to what Philip Roth called ?indigenous American berserk.? Lyman channeled the rhetoric of utopia and transcendence into the...