Beat HappeningBeat Happening by Bryan C. Parker
empowerment through the nation’s cultural
underground. In 1985, Olympia, Washington band
Beat Happening released their eponymous debut of
lo-fi pop songs on K Records and challenged every
conception held about music. At the center of the
group was the enigmatic Calvin Johnson and his revolutionary vision of
artistic creation. His foresight and industriousness allowed him to recruit
to the K Records roster other free-spirited artists like Beck, Modest
Mouse, and Built to Spill long before they gained widespread acclaim.
This book, structured in abecedarian fashion, breaks down the
fundamental components that defined Beat Happening’s self-titled
album. Organized in a light-hearted yet incisive format, each of the
book’s chapters details one particular facet of the record—band
members, historic shows, recording sessions, songs, and ideologies.
Open to any page, read a chapter or two; the individual parts and
episodes of the album exist as reflections of the album as a whole.
Here is the story of a band that popularized do-it-yourself projects and
home recording with four-track tape machines decades before the
digital revolution would extend an open hand to garage bands
everywhere. This is the story of musical pioneers. This is Beat
160 pages, paperback.