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Cleveland Speakers

Rock and Roll Memories
by Carlo Wolff

Perhaps the subtitle defines this book best: True and Tall Tales of the Glory Days, Told by Musicians, DJs, Promoters, and Fans Who Made the Scene in the '60s, '70s, and '80s.

If you are of that age where phrases such as World Series of Rock, Coffee Break Concerts, Music Grotto and Record Rendevous trigger a possibly hazy, yet still pleasant, memory, this book is for you.

This 130 page book contains over 200 black and white photos of concerts, venues, fans and musicians. Reading this book is like sitting down with a bag of peanuts. You keep digging in for just one more story. The book is a collection of stories from fans, musicians, concert promoters, DJs and others who were involved.

You will read fond memories from musicians such as Eric Carmen, Michael Stanley, Sonny Geraci, Marc Cohn, Wally Bryson, Eddie and Gerald Levert and Mr. Stress.

And from DJs and promoters such as Matt the Catt, Larry Morrow, Billy Bass, Denny Sanders, Jane Scott, Hank LoConti, Jules Belkin and dozens more.

Depending on your age and experience, certain parts of the book will jump out at you. Maybe it was the Beatles at Public Hall or the Stadium or Cyrus Erie at the Mentor Hullabaloo or the James Gang and Led Zeppelin at Musicarnival.

For me, it was the amazing lineup at the old Agora on 24th Street including the classic Bruce (Bruuuuuuuce!) Springsteen concerts there. And the World Series of Rock concerts at the old Cleveland Municipal Stadium that hosted everyone from CSN&Y to the Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, Pink Floyd and dozens more.

Some of the memories are a little hazy (hey, those were partying times!) or contradictory or even wrong (The Wild Horses hit was Funky Poodle) but they are a blast to read and rekindle your own hazy memories.

Don't be surprised that, just like with that bag of peanuts, you suddenly reach the book's end and wonder where the time went and wish you had just one more.

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