San Francisco/Berkeley Swag, Pt. One: Books

Yeah, been Out West for almost two weeks. Get with it, NY — these two towns make you seem like a money-mad artist-fan hellhole nowadays. Serious record stores, serious book stores (not nearly as many as in the past, but not teetering on extinction, either), with eager customers dropping cash. Learn. Change. Use Paris as a model if you must.

This is basically in order of purchase:

Everything I Need to Know I Learned from Led Zeppelin by Benjamin Darling. Sure, kinda silly that it’s a riff on those insipid “Golden Books” series, but, you know, Zappa-like sassy. Finest bathroom-book addition in years.

Trust by Jim Marshall . Copped for a knockout low sum at Half Price Books, a hugely recommended spot in Berkeley. Somebody(ies) has a helluva eye for out-of-print and cut-out. Very very little junk. Marshall is fundamentally a B&W guy, but the color shots are key to making this his most overall collection. There’s about a dozen shots in here that are little-known that a serious music fan has to have. (Marshall was in the karma mix in the area. I was shown a wondrous, rare photographer-signed shot of John Lennon backstage at the last concert — Marshall was the only one allowed — and then this book turned up.)

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof by Tennessee Williams (Signet-paperback movie version with eight pages of photos!) I love these cheesy but dreamy old editions. Found at the recommended Alexander Book Company in SF. It’s got class and taste and spirit. But I can remember when indies like this were not so unusual.

[Another Post to Come]

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