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MC5 An Oral Biography of Rock's Most Revolutionary Band by Brad Tolinski, Jaan Uhelszki and Ben Edmonds for Omnibus Press at Oi Oi The Shop

MC5: An Oral Biography of Rock's Most Revolutionary Band

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PRE-ORDER: A riveting oral biography of the proto-punk Detroit rockers MC5, based on original interviews with the band and key members of their inner circle

Though there’s long been a connection between music politics, few bands have dared to ignite a revolution through their fusion of activism and art like the MC5. The fiery progenitors of Detroit punk, didn’t just straddle the line - they bulldozed through it. Managed by the charismatic Sixties radical and hippie spokesman, John Sinclair, MC5 wasn’t just a band; they were a thunderous proclamation of dissent, amplifying the voices of the marginalised long before it was fashionable. From championing Black Lives Matter to rallying for cannabis legalisation, they fearlessly thrust their beliefs onto the world stage fifty years before those topics became part of the mainstream discussion. And for their efforts, the rabble-rousing musical arm of the White Panther Party, the scourge of J. Edgar Hoover's FBI and other defenders of public decency, were often beaten with clubs, threatened at gunpoint, and tossed into jail. The police regularly raided MC5 shows, record stores were busted for selling their albums, and the group was unceremoniously dumped by its record company, even as their record was storming up the charts - all this transpiring while the Sex Pistols were still on training wheels.

What has been lost amidst this notoriety is MC5 itself, a band worth remembering not because they were bad boys, but because they were so damn good.

In MC5: An Oral Biography of Rock’s Most Revolutionary Band​, music journalists Brad Tolinski and Jaan Uhelszki invite readers to reconsider this legendary band in a new light. Centred around a series of interviews with MC5 and their inner circle - many of whom are no longer with us - that Tolinski and Uhelszki inherited from Creem Magazine founding staffer and Mojo's US editor Bed Edmonds prior to his death, this book presents a genuinely candid, funny, and moving portrait of rock’s most uncompromising and articulate band. In addition to new insights on the band members and their manager, MC5 also features a virtual who’s who of Sixties rock musicians, including Iggy and the Stooges, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, promoter Bill Graham, John Lennon, the Jefferson Airplane, and political firebrands like Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, Tom Hayden, and Black Panther Eldridge Cleaver.

As innovative, insightful, and inspiring as the band itself, MC5 is a fitting testament to the legacy of these iconic rock pioneers - told in their very own words.


If other items are purchased in the same order they will all be shipped once the book is released. If you need the other items sooner, please place a separate order.


About the Authors

Brad Tolinski was editor-in-chief of Guitar World magazine for over 25 years. He is also the author of Eruption: Conversations with Eddie van Halen and other books.

Jaan Uhelszki is a respected music journalist and co-founder of the music magazine Creem.

Authors: Brad Tolinski, Jaan Uhelszki and Ben Edmonds
Publisher: Omnibus Press
Release date: 10 October 2024
Format: Hardback, 304 pages
Language: English

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