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The Tastemaker: My Life with the Legends and Geniuses of Rock Music

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Monster pieces calling for multiple soloists, a lusty chorus and an orchestra almost toppling off the stage have become one of the specialities of the London Philharmonic Orchestra under Edward Gardner, its principal conductor. One month ago their concert account of Tippett’s opera The Midsummer Marriage... ★★★★☆ However, the very best parts of The Tastemaker detail his adventures in New York as an out gay man employed by RCA Records to proselytise disco as it boomed. It was a hedonistic hoot, but there was a price to pay and, when King grieves over friends lost as Aids took hold and articulates the fears every gay man had, he is genuinely affecting, even before he tells of laying on a bed, holding the dying Freddie Mercury’s hand. “He was stone cold”. Readers will especially enjoy King's tales about promoting the industry's superstars, including the likes of John Lennon, Elton John, the Rolling Stones and Queen, among others. Beatles fans will relish the opportunity to experience King's insider's view of Lennon's Thanksgiving 1974 performance with John at Madison Square Garden. Save for an April 1975 TV special in honor of Sir Lew Grade, it would mark the last time the Beatle played a live show.

The Tastemaker: My Life with the Legends and Geniuses o…

King worked for Hall for three years before being poached by Andrew Loog Oldham, who at the time was managing The Rolling Stones and was even younger than King. This was when Swinging London started to move through the gears and when suddenly teenagers were in positions of genuine power. i remember descriptions of tony from elton john's autobiography, and it was immediatelly clear how immersed he was in the scene. tony was a guest on probably the best beatles podcast there is (something about the beatles), where he promoted the book and i knew it is a must-read for me. Marc writes (main picture): I specifically focused on the South Africa captain Siya Kolisi, far left, as he sung the national anthem, Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika, as he sings with so much passion and emotion.The Washington-born, Baltimore-based pianist Lafayette Gilchrist treads a very personal path, combining the stride and blues styles of the old school with the hip-hop and go-go funk rhythms of his youth. It’s a powerful blend, especially on this densely arranged sextet album of originals. Solid... Lafayette Gilchrist

The Tastemaker: My Life with the Legends and Geniuses of Rock The Tastemaker: My Life with the Legends and Geniuses of Rock

It was all going swimmingly for these two and then last weekend, to put it bluntly, Sale and Gloucester got slapped. Let’s start with Sale. The 2023 runners-up put in one of their worst performances in recent memory as they were battered by Exeter Chiefs 43-0 — the first time Sale have been left pointless since a defeat... Sale Sharks v Gloucester Tony eventually repairs to America where he works with John Lennon and Ringo Starr on their solo work. He recovered and ended his career working with Elton John, overseeing his album sleeves and working on the staging of his Las Vegas show and ongoing farewell tour. Now retired, he says that writing The Tastemaker was a strange experience, tinged with sadness and regret: many of the characters in it are gone; it ends with the death of Charlie Watts. Then again, King achieved what he set out to do.

Later that summer, as King prepared Lennon's new album for the pop music marketplace, he proposed the concept of a Thanksgiving gig to the former Beatle. "So he says to me," King recalled, "'I'll tell you what, if the record gets to number one, I'll do it.' Of course, he was never thinking it was going to get to number one." Propelled by a deft marketing campaign — and aided, no doubt, by Elton's superstardom during that era — "Whatever Gets You Thru the Night" topped the U.S. charts.

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