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Rhapsody in Black
The Life and Music of Roy Orbison
Series: Book
Publisher: Backbeat Books
Format: Softcover
Author: John Kruth
Roy Orbison emerged as an artist alongside his Sun Records contemporaries in the early days of rock 'n' roll. He did not possess the good looks of Elvis Presley or the everyman toughness of Johnny Cash, nor did he conduct wild-child stage antics like Jerry Lee Lewis. But he did possess a magnetic mystique that would captivate fans around the world and inspire countless musicians.

A quiet man, who k.d. lang would refer to as “Buddha,” Orbison was more interested in building model airplanes, watching films, and reading books in his den than talking about himself or partying hard. Yet he was nothing shy of a superstar – determined to succeed, driven by a relentless love for music that started in childhood, and blessed with some of the best pipes in the business. Standing still onstage, hidden behind his perpetual Ray-Bans, Orbison delivered his melodious songs with haunting emotional depth. His artful recordings, mysterious image, and angelic voice have left an indelible mark on popular music.

In Rhapsody in Black, John Kruth tells the story of Roy Orbison in prose as musical as the artist's melodies and does not shy away from or trivialize the personal pain, alienation, and tragic events that shaped Orbison's singular personality and music. Featuring interviews with people who worked closely with Orbison, career-spanning photos, a select discography, and a new afterward for the paperback edition, Rhapsody in Black is both celebratory and touching. It delves into the behind-the-music details of Orbison's collaborations, recording sessions, tours, and business affairs, as well as his personal life – his roots, his marriages and his children – to present a telescopic view of his legacy.
$24.99 (US)
Inventory #HL 00242538
ISBN: 9781540000460
UPC: 888680704506
Width: 6.0"
Length: 9.0"
264 pages
“Kruth's sense of humor doesn't conceal his sympathy for his subject or eclipse his exhaustive research. He talked to anyone still alive who knew Orbison, the greatest introvert to achieve rock stardom. Originally published in 2013, the new edition includes notes on recent reissues and documentaries.” – Shepherd Express
“While very highly recommended, especially for community and academic library 20th Century American Biography collections in general, and Roy Orbison supplemental studies lists in particular, Rhapsody in Black is a must for the legions of Roy Orbison fans.” – Midwest Book Review
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