Book Beat is proud to host a book signing for Heaven Was Detroit: From Jazz to Hip Hop and Beyond on Sunday, November 6 from 2:00-4:00PM, featuring editor M.L. Liebler, along with contributing authors W. Kim Herron, Susan Whitall, John Sinclair, Leni Sinclair, Jim Gallert, Bill Harris, Herman Daldin, Joel Martin, Gary Graff, John Rodwan, Jr., R.J. Spangler, Danny Kroha, Jarrett Koral, Willy Wilson, Aaron Anderson and Matthew Smith. Authors will be discussing the history of Detroit music as well as signing copies. Books will be available for sale at the event. For more information, please contact Book Beat (248) 968-1190.
Heaven Was Detroit: From Jazz to Hip Hop and Beyond is the first of its kind to capture the full spectrum of Detroit popular music from the early 1900s to the twenty-first century. Readers will find in this unique and stimulating anthology new essays, and a few classics, by widely known and respected music writers, critics, and recording artists who weigh in on their careers and experiences in the Detroit music scene, from rock to jazz and everything in between. With a foreword by the acclaimed rock writer Dave Marsh and iconic photos by Leni Sinclair, the book features such well-known writers as Greil Marcus, Jaan Uhelszki, Al Young, Susan Whitall, Gary Graff, John Sinclair, and many others.
“An extraordinary music city deserves an epic chronicle… Without directly arguing it, “Heaven Was Detroit” provides insight into why Detroit’s music seems so intrinsic to the city’s identity — more so than many other cities with famous musical exports — and why it inspires so much dot-connecting.” —review Detroit Free Press
Divided into nine sections, the book moves chronologically through the early days of jazz in Detroit, to the rock ’n’ roll of the 1960s, and up to today’s electronica scene, with so many groundbreaking moments in between. This collection of cohesive essays includes Motown’s connection to the Civil Rights Movement and the Black Power Movement through its side label, Black Forum Records; Lester Bangs’s exemplary piece on Alice Cooper; the story behind the emergence of rap legend Eminem; and Craig Maki’s enlightening history on “hillbilly rock” — just to name a few. With a rich musical tradition to rival Nashville, Detroit serves as the inspiration, backdrop, and playground for some of the most influential music artists of the past century.
“M.L. Liebler’s shares his deep insights and passion for Detroit culture in this new anthology that assembles the A-list of music historians and storytellers from the one of the world’s great musical cities. It will help shine the international spotlight on Detroit’s valuable role in shaping some of the most significant music styles of the 20th and 21st centuries from Jazz and Blues to R&B, Rock, Rap and Techno.”
– Judy Adams, musician, composer, musicologist, and WDET program director and prime time host for over 30 years
M. L. Liebler is an award-winning poet, literary arts activist, and professor. He is the author of several books of poetry, including I Want to Be Once (Wayne State University Press, 2016), and an editor of the anthology Working Words: Punching the Clock and Kicking Out the Jams (Coffee House Press, 2010). He is also co-editor of Bob Seger’s House: An Anthology of Michigan Fiction (Wayne State University Press, 2016). He has taught at Wayne State University since 1980.
Al Young, Jim Gallert, Lars Bjorn, Gary Carner, Larry Gabriel, John Sinclair, Bill Harris, W. Kim Heron, R. J. Spangler, Marsha Music Philpot, Robert B. Jones, S. R. Boland, Matthew Smith, Joel Martin, Michael Hurtt, Gary Graff, Herb A. Jordan, Peter Benjaminson, Melba Joyce Boyd, Pat Thomas, Susan Whitall, Mike Dutkewych, John Rodwan Jr., Scott Morgan, Willy Wilson, George Moseman, L.E. Grimshaw, Herman Daldin, Chris Morton, Rick Allen, Lester Bangs, Jaan Uhelszki, Howard A. Dewitt, Ben Blackwell, Danny Kroha, Diane Spodarek, Brian McCollum, Greil Marcus, Bill Holdship, Matt Deapo, Shane M. Liebler, Daniel Jones, Brian Smith, Hobey Echlin, Craig Maki, Rhonda Welsh, Thomas Trimble, Aaron Anderson, Jarrett Koral, Rebecca Derminer, Dan Carlisle, Ben Edmonds and Leni Sinclair. Cover art by Barbara Greene.