Exclaim! Gift Guide: The Best Music Books of 2019

Present ideas for readers, including new memoirs by Tegan and Sara, Debbie Harry, and Liz Phair

BY Exclaim! StaffPublished Nov 25, 2019

One of the best things about the holidays is the chance to put down your phone, step away from the computer and have some quiet relaxation. That precious time away from glowing screens gives you a chance to get some reading done — and thankfully there are some new books for music-lovers to devour. From Tegan and Sara's memoir to Questlove's food book to a tome from Toronto Instagram account @theflyervault, here are some present ideas for readers.

Disgraceland: Musicians Getting Away with Murder and Behaving Very Badly

Jake Brennan, host of "rock'n'roll true-crime podcast" Disgraceland, compiles some of the best (or worst, depending on your perspective) stories from the music industry's seedy underbelly.
Order it here

Liz Phair - Horror Stories

Few records seem as prescient today as Exile in Guyville, Liz Phair's stunning debut. The singer approaches her new memoir with the same candour and eye for detail that she displayed on that, and followup classics, as she traces the critical junctures in her musical and personal life.
Order it here

Debbie Harry - Face It: A Memoir

Debbie Harry has lived quite a life, and a new memoir from the Blondie singer details many of her (mis)adventures coming of age in late '60s and early '70s New York on her way to becoming an international star and fashion icon.
Order it here

Questlove - Mixtape Potluck

Award-winning food writer, one-time restaurateur and Roots drummer Questlove knows his way around a kitchen. Featuring a forward by Martha Stewart and contributions from famous friends like Jimmy Fallon, Natalie Portman and Q-Tip, Quest pairs each recipe with music reflective of "their creative energy."
Order it here

Tegan and Sara - High School

High school sucks, but that hasn't stopped Tegan and Sara from digging into this awkward phase in their new memoir, a companion piece to the duo's new album, Hey, I'm Just Like You.
Order it here

God Save the Queens: The Essential History of Women in Hip-Hop

Ladies first in this long-overdue history of women's important role in hip-hop history. Detailing the contributions of everyone from Roxanne Shante to Missy Elliott, author Kathy Iandoli shines a much-needed spotlight in a genre too often dominated by men.
Order it here

The Flyer Vault: 150 Years of Toronto Concert History

Followers of Daniel Tate's Instagram account have been given a taste of his prodigious collection of show flyers. He's now sharing that passion more formally with this new book, co-written by historian Rob Bowman. The deep dive into the city's musical history is a must for locals and music fans alike.
Order it here

The Hard Times: The First 40 Years

The satirical website celebrates five years of skewering punk and alt music and lifestyle with this new book. Featuring new articles from the "archives," this book celebrates four decades of sticking it to the man.
Order it here

The Song of the Machine: From Disco to DJs to Techno, a Graphic Novel of Electronic Music

Originally published in 2000 in France, this graphic novel, which features a forward from Daft Punk, traces the rise of electronic music and is now available in English for the first time.
Order it here

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