100 Things Beatles Fans Should Know Before They Die (Triumph Books), by Gillian G. Gaar / Eric Clapton FAQ: All That’s Left to Know About Slowhand (Backbeat Books), By David Bowling
It seems as if every month brings the publication of new fan books about rock stars, especially the great stars of the ‘60s. One new addition to the shelf focuses on the band that changed everything, The Beatles, and the other on one of rock’s great guitarists, Eric Clapton.
Eric Clapton FAQ is a little more detailed than its Fab Four contender, but both authors pursue similar ends along parallel avenues. Neither book is a biography but both contain a good deal of biographical information. Neither can be called a critical study or a cultural history, but both contain some analysis and—of necessity—sketch in the backdrops. These are books that appeal to fans that enjoy a bit of light reading on their favorite artists—compendia of information and fun facts. Wanna know the names of all the Quarrymen? 100 Things will give you that (and more than 99 more).
Clapton FAQ goes deeper into rock critic mode with album-by-album reviews. “There’s One in Every Crowd is one of the most mundane solo records of his career,” the author states. “Sometimes I think I remember the dog on the cover better than I remember the music.” He’s not alone.
If you’re looking for more, both books provide good lists of sources for further reading.