Author: David Detmer
Format: Paperback (21cm x 15cm)
Pages: 144 plus 16 colour
Illustrations: 40 Colour
Renaissance, a much beloved but highly underrated English progressive rock band, began life in 1969 as an offshoot of The Yardbirds. Keith Relf and Jim McCarty, who had recently left that iconic blues‐rock group, decided to put together a new band that would differ from its predecessor by being more influenced by classical and folk music. After releasing two albums in ’69 and ’71, The band then quickly underwent a 100 percent turnover in personnel, resulting in an entirely new Renaissance
The new band was distinguished by the astonishingly beautiful five‐octave range vocals of their lead singer, Annie Haslam; their lengthy, multimovement, classically inspired compositions, and their unusual instrumentation. Renaissance released six classic studio albums, and one live double album, between 1972 and 1978, even scoring a UK hit with ‘Northern Lights’. The late ’70s and early ’80s saw the band commercialise with limited success, before folding.
In the 21st century, with Haslam continuing as the band’s distinctive voice, Renaissance has returned to its orchestral/symphonic rock roots with two studio albums of new material and multiple live releases featuring contemporary treatments of its ’70s classics. This book, the first ever published on Renaissance, assesses their entire career, covering every song on every album. It is the essential guide to the recorded works of a group that deserves to be ranked among the greatest in the progressive rock genre.
About The Author
David Detmer is a Professor of Philosophy at Purdue University Northwest. He is the author of six previous books, the most recent of which are Zinnophobia (about the radical American historian, Howard Zinn) and Simply Sartre (on the French existentialist philosopher and playwright, Jean‐Paul Sartre). An amateur guitarist, his published essays on The Beatles and Pink Floyd have been translated into German, Portuguese, and Korean. He lives in Munster, Indiana, USA.
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