Title: Steel Drumming At the Apollo
Author: Trish Marx and Elen B. Senisi
Who Should Read It? This book is a necessity in libraries in schools in more difficult areas. I think it is a great read for anyone interested in inspirational stories of musicians.
What I Have to Say:
This book was accompanied by a CD that I listened to before actually reading the book. As such, I went in to the book already impressed. These steel drummers are COOL! And talented. Even if the kind of music they make isn't your cup of tea, it's impossible not to notice that they're good at what they do, not to occasionally find yourself caught up in the beats.
I think it was probably smart for me to do it in this order, CD then book. The book starts off with a brief biography of each boy in the steel drum band. Their stories are interesting, but if I hadn't listened to the CD first, it might have been a bit like reading the biography of the singer of a band I'd never heard of. Potentially interesting in general, but without much personal interest for me.
After that, the story of these musicians on their quest to Showtime at the Apollo was absolutely FASCINATING and refreshing. I love stories about passionate people, especially when their passion helps them to break free from negative circumstances. And that describes the story perfectly.
As such, I think that this book is a necessity in libraries in schools in more difficult areas. And if those schools happen to have music classes, this book is a perfect pick for music teachers to read with their students. It is inspiring and influential.
Each page is accompanied by beautiful, glossy color photos that really give the story of this Steel Drumming group a 3D element, and help you really feel as if you are getting to know the band. I would recommend this to everyone, not just students.
Summary: A photo-essay following the members of a high school band through several rounds of Amateur Night competitions at the Apollo Theater in New York City. Includes a CD of the band playing their competition song, plus original compositions.
Cover Story: It's the perfect cover! It's a great picture of the Steel Drum band, and I find the design quite appealing. Fabulousness!!
Disclosure: This book was sent to me by the publisher for review.