We’re happy to announce three forthcoming Mainspring Press books for the first half of 2016, reflecting our new focus on jazz and blues–related texts:
Race Records and the American Recording Industry (1919–1945):
An Illustrated History — Allan Sutton
Robert Johnson’s real devil was a record company, not some supernatural being he supposedly met at a crossroads. Black Swan failed not because of an imagined white conspiracy, but because Harry Pace was an inexpert businessman who got entangled with one of the recording industry’s chronic losers and regularly deceived his customers and investors. And as for those claims that “Crazy Blues” sold millions of copies, well….
Race Records offers a fresh, no-nonsense examination of recordings in all genres — not just the blues — that were intended for African-American record buyers in the pre-R&B years, focusing on the making, marketing, and consumption of those records within the context of the American recording and entertainment industries. (Approx. 320 pages, 160 illustrations)
Paramount Book of Blues: The Elusive Recording Artists on Paramount’s
Race Records — Alex van der Tuuk
Alex van der Tuuk returns with the first in-depth, properly documented biographical encylcopedia of Paramount blues recording artists. Far surpassing the recycled anecdotal work we’re accustomed to seeing in blues histories, Alex has undertaken substantial original research for this volume, digging deep to find the missing pieces and sort out fact from fiction. (Page count TBA; illustrated)
Orlando Marsh and the Marsh Laboratories: An Illustrated History
and Discography (working title) — Richard Raichelson
American music scholar Richard Raichelson goes beyond the ordinary discography to examine the individual recordings within their historical and musical contexts, and ties them to the remarkable story of Orlando Marsh and his legendary Chicago studio. (Page count TBA; illustrated)
ABOUT THE AUTHORS:
ALLAN SUTTON is the founder of Mainspring Press and author or co-author of more than fifteen books on early sound recordings, including Recording the ‘Twenties and A Phonograph in Every Home. He is the the recipient of the Association for Recorded Sound Collections‘ 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award.
.ALEX VAN TUUK is the author of Paramount’s Rise and Fall (now in its second edition) and has contributed to many other important works, including Third Man – Revenant Records’ groundbreaking Paramount reissue project. A widely traveled expert on early blues artists and recordings, he resides in the Netherlands.
RICHARD RAICHELSON received a Ph.D. in folklore / anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania. Well known for his research into early blues traditions, and especially the music and social history of the Memphis area, he is the author of Beale Street Talks and Memphis Innovations, as well as a contributor to numerous other works.