Can you remember the year that changed everything in America, England, and around the Western world? A crazy-quilt of events were put in motion in 1963: skirts got shorter, hair got longer; music got louder, dance got freer; art got funkier, models got skinnier. Although they say if you remember the sixties you didn't live the sixties, dozens of movers and shakers beg to differ and have shared their memories of those heady days.
It remains a unique and prophetic coincidence—one that has gone unnoticed for more than fifty years. On January 13, 1963, in Birmingham, England, an attractive young boy band recorded its first appearance on British national television, dazzling viewers with an exuberant tune called "Please Please Me." That same night, viewers found a more cerebral experience on the BBC, then the only other TV channel in Britain, when an unknown, tousle-haired American musician made his broadcast debut by intoning a hymn entitled "Blowin' in the Wind."—1963: The Year of the Revolution by Robin Morgan and Ariel Leve (HarperCollins / It Books, 2013, p. ix)
Neither the Beatles nor Bob Dylan could have known it, but within the year their voices would enthrall millions of ears around the world. The Beatles would become the poster boys for a revolution, and Dylan would be come its prophet.
- Contents of the book: firsthand recollections of musicians, photographers, club owners, authors, fashion designers, filmmakers, and models who were on the forefront of sociocultural change.
- Source of the material: Morgan and Leve taped interviews and then organized and compiled the stories into categories that take us through the months of upheaval (from "Awakenings" to "Aftershocks")
- Who do we hear from? Eric Clapton (guitarist), Vidal Sassoon (hair stylist), Mary Quant (fashion designer), Terry O'Neill (photographer), Graham Nash (musician), Pattie Boyd (model), and many more household names
- Genre: nonfiction, history, memoir, social commentary
- Extras: three sections of period photographs
- My thoughts: fascinating stories and memories of a truly revolutionary time in our recent history; loved remembering the music, art, and fashions of my youth (I had a Sassoon haircut in seventh grade!); loved the photos
- Recommended for: baby boomers; children of baby boomers; lovers of music, fashion, history, sociocultural change, and modern history; note that the book can be read in bits and pieces or all the way through
This is the oral history of that year, told by the men and women who, with guitars, cameras, pens, brushes, scissors—and even mere notoriety—endowed youth with universal and democratic membership in a new meritocracy. In 1963, youth no longer waited, cap in hand, for an invite to the best tables—they simply built their own banquet hall. (p. xv)
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