When it comes to great rock writers with the engaging talent of bringing history to life, Oxford-educated Barney Hoskyns is second perhaps only to Peter Guralnick.
Hoskyns’ bibliography already boasts the definitive takes on the history of L.A. music (Waiting for the Sun), Tom Waits (Lowside of the Road), and Steely Dan (Major Dudes), among others. Now he has taken on the mystical, magical town of Woodstock, N.Y. in Small Town Talk: Bob Dylan, The Band, Van Morrison, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix and Friends in the Wild Years of Woodstock, a riveting read, even if you aren’t a hippie and didn’t happen to, you know, be there.
Hoskyns has been in Our Town for the last few weeks, researching the history of Chess Records. And on Thursday, he’ll talk about and sign what he calls his “Woodstock/Bearsville/Albert Grossman chronicle” at the Book Cellar, 4736 N. Lincoln. This don’t-miss event for fans of great rock writing is free, and more info can be found here.