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Backbeat Books publishes The Ibanez Electric Guitar Book

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Tony Bacon The Ibanez Electric Guitar Book

Backbeat Books has announced it has published The Ibanez Electric Guitar Book, a complete history of Ibanez electric guitars by Tony Bacon.

Ibanez is arguably the most important Japanese guitar brand, and this new book tells the story of its electric guitars, tracking the fortunes of this impressive brand from its origins to today. The reader is hooked after first paragraph: “How on earth were they going to sell all these mad-looking guitars? Would they prompt Ibanez’s final plunge into guitar-making oblivion?” We all know the story has a different ending, and Tony Bacon tells it in a fascinating and captivating fashion.

The Ibanez Electric Guitar Book leads us from the early years, through the decades and on to today, from the first cheap and basic models, to the copies of leading Gibson instruments, such as the Les Pauls, SGs, and Explorers, to Steve Vai’s impressive and spectacular JEM signature models in the late ‘80s, and on to the international success of Ibanez original designs. Exclusive interviews with Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, George Benson, Mick Thomson, and others illustrate Ibanez’s leading role among guitarists of many styles, from metal to pop to jazz and alternative rock. The book hinges on the game-changing development of Vai’s JEM model and its important related design, the RG, and explains the intriguing ups and downs in the history of this great modern guitar brand.

The Ibanez Electric Guitar Book is a veritable treasure: a thoroughly researched story, exclusive interviews with some of the best guitar players of our time, and a useful reference section detailing production years and specifications of all Ibanez’s electric models. The amazing gallery showing virtually every Ibanez model ever made, as well as vintage posters and pictures of famous players makes this book a must-have for any guitar enthusiast.

The book is available to purchase for $24.99 USD.

More information: Backbeat Books / The Ibanez Electric Guitar Book

Backbeat Books publishes The Keyboard Handbook

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The Keyboard Handbook

Backbeat Books has announced that it has published The Keyboard Handbook, a step-by-step course in keyboard playing for musicians of all levels.

Beginning with the basics of posture and technique, it offers a series of more than 80 specially written exercises and covers a wide variety of classic and contemporary musical styles – from blues to rock, soul to funk, gospel to synth-pop.

The book helps to master even more complex styles, and the authors have built in progressive difficulty through the examples.

The Keyboard Handbook includes

  • a basic guide to reading music
  • more than 80 musical exercises showcasing a wide variety of classic and contemporary musical styles
  • expert tips on music theory, covering rhythm, scales, chords, and more
  • an introduction to MIDI technology and how synthesizers work
  • lay-flat binding for ease of use at the keyboard or with a music stand

The accompanying CD showcases a range of different electric and electronic keyboards, and features audio tracks of all of the examples shown in the book, allowing readers to work their way through each section at their own pace, while the lay-flat binding means the book is easy to use at the keyboard or with a music stand.

The Keyboard Handbook is available to purchase for $29.99 USD.

More information: Backbeat Books / The Keyboard Handbook

Backbeat Books publishes The Epiphone Guitar Book

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Backbeat Books has announced it has published The Epiphone Guitar Book, the inside story of one of the world’s leading guitar makers by Walter Carter.

Backbeat Books The Epiphone Guitar Book

The epic story of Epiphone, one of the world’s oldest and most famous guitar companies, spans three centuries, from its Old World roots in the 19th century to the golden age of American guitar makers in the 20th century and onward into the global market of the new millennium.

Former staff historian Walter Carter recounts the story in The Epiphone Guitar Book, mirroring the story of American business, from an individual luthier to a family business and on to corporate ownership. This is also the story of American popular music, powered by Epiphone guitars, from the big-bodied Emperor that drove the swing bands of the 1930s to the electric hollow-bodies of the 1960s used by the Beatles, to the custom solid-body models preferred by such modern rockers as Noel Gallagher (Oasis) and Frank Iero (My Chemical Romance).

Along the way, Carter considers the effect of new ownership by Gibson, starting in the late 1950s, and the way that Epiphone survived moves to offshore production to take on the strong individual identity it enjoys today. Beautifully illustrated with photographs of all the important Epiphone instruments and the extraordinary musicians who played them, and featuring a collector’s section that provides specifications for every Epiphone guitar made from the 1920s to the present, The Epiphone Guitar Book is the fascinating story of how a name in the world of the guitar became iconic.

The book is available to purchase for $24.99 USD.

More information: Backbeat Books / The Epiphone Guitar Book

Backbeat Books publishes Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyric Book

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Backbeat Books has announced Jimi Hendrix The Ultimate Lyric Book, a collection featuring never-before-seen songs, photos, and handwritten lyrics.

Jimi Hendrix The Ultimate Lyric Book

Jimi Hendrix was such an extraordinary guitarist, it is easy to forget that just as much passion, soul, and precision went into his lyrics. Inspired by Bob Dylan, Hendrix was a fearless lyrical innovator, willing to let his imagination guide him to uncharted landscapes within the pop music realm. From the existential euphoria of “I Don’t Live Today” to the elusive beauty of “Little Wing” to the psychedelic blues of “My Friend” to the otherworldly “1983 (A Merman I Should Turn to Be),” his lyrics remain among the greatest in the pantheon of rock, infused with the same inventiveness, virtuosity, and courage that informed his guitar playing.

Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyric Book contains all the words to the Hendrix classics fans have rocked along to for years, as well as unpublished songs from “Valley of Neptune” and other previously undiscovered sources. Compiled by Jimi’s sister, Janie L. Hendrix, Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyric Book is extraordinarily personal, and includes numerous examples of Jimi’s handwritten lyrics, often scribbled on hotel stationery, as well as photos of him that accompany every song.

Much of the material has never been seen before. “When I was a child, I was always fascinated by my brother Jimi’s handwriting,” recalled Janie Hendrix, who compiled this collection. “It was an art form in and of itself. I remember the feeling of being captivated the first time I saw his handwritten lyrics, thinking how beautiful, how complicated both the writing and the words were on paper. Even now they offer such an insight into who my brother was and is.”

Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyric Book will give fans a glimpse of the lyricist behind the songs, a songwriter whose words were just as searing as his solos.

The book is available to purchase for $40 USD.

More information: Backbeat Books / Jimi Hendrix The Ultimate Lyric Book

Electronic Musician Presents The Recording Secrets Behind 50 Great Albums

The Recording Secrets Behind 50 Great Albums

Backbeat Books has published Electronic Musician Presents The Recording Secrets Behind 50 Great Albums edited by Kylee Swenson Gordon.

Culled from 10 years of the Electronic Musician, Remix, and EQ magazines’ archives, the articles in The Recording Secrets Behind 50 Great Albums will enlighten readers about the recording and songwriting techniques that helped create 50 great albums, spanning as far back as 1967 and as recent as 2011, revealing the methodology of numerous talented artists, producers, and engineers.

Ranging from such seminal classics as Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours, Aerosmith’s Toys in the Attic, and the Who’s Quadrophenia to recently recorded works by Danger Mouse, Foo Fighters, and Phoenix, this compilation of articles taps into the inner studio realm of a wide range of artists, crossing boundaries of era, genre, geography, and recording style. But what these articles have in common is a wealth of behind-the-scenes secrets that inform how many amazing sounds and songs were captured and constructed. Musicians craving great tips and advice to pursue their own musical dreams – as well as fans interested in how their favorite artists made their music – will find a treasure trove of stories from the long-respected music-production magazines that dug deep to capture all of the juicy recording details.

The book is available to purchase for $16.99 USD.

More information: Backbeat Books

Backbeat Books publishes The Home Recording Handbook

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Backbeat Books has released The Home Recording Handbook, a real-world guide to recording at home by Dave Hunter.

The Home Recording Handbook

Gone are the days when home recording was limited to four tracks of tape hiss on a cassette porta-studio. Now, limitless digital multitrack recording and a vast array of outboard effects and processors are available to anyone with a computer. Add a few other essentials such as a microphone, some headphones and monitors, and anyone can have a home studio capable of making professional recordings worthy of airplay and release. What one might not have is the know-how to harness all that vast potential, which is where The Home Recording Handbook comes in.

In this latest entry in Backbeat’s best-selling handbook series, author Dave Hunter shows readers how to make pro-sounding recordings without pro budgets and expensive studios, and get great results with the gear they have. He takes readers through tracking, mixing, and mastering, showing how to make each effective with minimal gear. He includes tips for drums, bass, guitar, keyboard, vocals and more.

Packed with tips and techniques, The Home Recording Handbook is designed to open flat for use as an easy reference guide and is supported by specially recorded audio tracks on the accompanying CD. This is an essential volume for the working musician.

The Home Recording Handbook is available to purchase for $29.99 USD.

More information: The Home Recording Handbook

Backbeat Books publishes The Blues Guitar Handbook

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The Blues Guitar Handbook

Backbeat Books has published The Blues Guitar Handbook, by leading guitar authority Adam St. James.

This comprehensive book and CD package provides everything a guitarist needs in order to understand and master finger style acoustic blues, bottleneck, post-war electric blues, jazz blues, and modern blues-rock.

“The Blues Guitar Handbook will help players quickly make more sense of the blues and realize there is so much more to the blues than most players think. It isn’t all just 12-bar, I-IV-V chords or minor pentatonic scales”, said St. James. “In writing the book, I really wanted to help players have more fun with their guitar, and gain confidence that they can become the ‘hot’ blues player in their neck of the woods!”

This latest entry in Backbeat’s bestselling handbook series starts by exploring the humble beginnings of blues guitar through the early decades of the 20th century, moves into the ’40s and ’50s, then it’s the blues-rockers of the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s before the story comes up to date, with today’s blues flame-keepers. Profiles of such players as Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, B.B. King, Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Keb Mo’ highly the evolution the this great American art form.

The Blues Guitar Handbook contains a comprehensive section for mastering electric and acoustic blues from the very basics and leading into more advanced rhythm and lead techniques before examining four key styles: acoustic blues, classic electric blues, blues rock, and jazz blues.

The Blues Guitar Handbook features

  • A step-by-step course in playing the blues, from 12-bar to advanced soloing.
  • Advice on guitars, strings, picks, and amps.
  • Practical guidance on reading both TAB and traditional notation.
  • Essential theory for blues guitar.
  • Instruction on bends, harmonics, tremolo, and tapping.
  • Extensive chord and scale diagrams.
  • Complete songs to listen to and play.
  • A CD of the books key examples and exercises.
  • An encyclopedic history of blues guitar and its players.

The many exercises in the book are supported by specially recorded audio tracks on the accompanying CD.

The Blues Guitar Handbook is available to purchase for $29.99 USD.

More information: The Blues Guitar Handbook

Backbeat Books introduces Flying V, Explorer, Firebird

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Backbeat Books, publisher of books for performers and fans who are passionate about music, has published Flying V, Explorer, Firebird.

Backbeat Books Flying V, Explorer, Firebird

In this new book, venerable music author Tony Bacon shows how a trio of radical guitar designs triumphed over commercial failure to inspire a new generation of makers and players to become the look of choice for the modern metal guitarist.

Until the launch of the Flying V and Explorer in 1958, electric guitars were supposed to look like…guitars. Suddenly, Gibson turned conventional design upside down, almost literally, by using straight lines and angular body shapes, changing the way electrics could look and, in the process, creating a set of rare future collectables.

Flying V, Explorer, Firebird tells the story of those first peculiar instruments and goes on to describe Gibson’s second attempt at nonstandard designs with the Firebird of the early ’60s. The book shows how most of these were a commercial failure at first and goes on to detail the influence of the designs on guitar-makers such as Hamer, Jackson, Dean, Ibanez, and BC Rich, all of whom embraced Gibson’s original weird-is-good design ethic. In parallel with the story of the makers is an absorbing account of the players who discovered these odd-shaped instruments, including Zakk Wylde (Black Label Society), Edge (U2), and Rick Nielsen (Cheap Trick).

Exclusive interviews with players like Billy Gibbons, Michael Schenker, K.K. Downing, Johnny Winter and more illuminate the story of this fascinating assortment of electric guitar innovations, alongside specially commissioned images of every key model and brand and an enviable collection of guitar memorabilia, plus a gallery of leading guitarists photographed in action with their instruments. If it’s weird and has strings, it’s in Flying V, Explorer, Firebird.

Flying V, Explorer, Firebird is available to purchase from Hal Leonard Books, priced at $24.99 USD.

More information: Hal Leonard Books