Sex, Hope, & Rock ‘n’ Roll: The Writings of Ellen Willis

Earlier today I was looking for a music topic to write about for my blog. I happened upon an article on npr.org that caught my interest. Being a devout fan of music books and music writers, I thankfully stumbled across an important new book I want to share with you.

The book is entitled Out of the Vinyl Deeps, Ellen Willis on Rock MusicThe book is an anthology of Ellen Willis’s writings cultivated by her daughter, Nona Willis Aronowitz, Editor.

One of my all time favorite music critics is Ellen Willis. I found her writings and musings  fresh, intellectual, articulate, and simpatico with the rock music scene as it was unfolding unto our ears in the late 60s and early 70s.

Ellen Willis was The New Yorker‘s first pop critic from 1968 to 1975, and her essays made the connection between music, pleasure and politics. I associate Ellen Willis’s writing more with Rolling Stone Magazine than I do with The New Yorker. I read with intense passion, Ellen’s interpretation of musicians and the sociological-cultural impact on our generation maturation

A unique music conference was held at NYU on April 30th, it was called “Sex, Hope and Rock ‘n’ Roll: The Writings of Ellen Willis”. The conference was designed to honor, remember, and critically situate the acclaimed New York writer Ellen Willis (1941-2006) and her work across politics, gender, and popular culture, with a special attention to her unique contribution to intellectual history within the fields of music journalism and feminist cultural criticism.

I urge you to read more about the literary and cultural event that I so wished I attended here and here.

I’m adding this book to my Amazon Wish List and looking forward to the time after I complete graduate school to catch up on my music book reading.

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