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Robert Keith

New York, NY USA
  • 8
  • reviews
  • 1
  • helpful vote
  • 11
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  • The Last Jedi

  • Star Wars
  • By: Jason Fry
  • Narrated by: Marc Thompson
  • Length: 11 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,802
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2,598
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,586

Written with input from director Rian Johnson, this official adaptation of Star Wars: The Last Jedi expands on the film to include scenes from alternate versions of the script and other additional content. From the ashes of the Empire has arisen another threat to the galaxy’s freedom: the ruthless First Order. Fortunately, new heroes have emerged to take up arms - and perhaps lay down their lives - for the cause.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • You will love the audio version.

  • By Robert A. Raymond on 03-07-18

1st SW Movie Also Great As A Book

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-12-18

I am NOT fond of SW trolls for this movie. The film was extremely well written, full of surprises - the best film since The Empire Strikes Back. I love the book as well. Lots of great details that expand an already great story. 5 stars! Marc Thompson is brilliant as always.

0 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Beatles

  • Image and the Media
  • By: Michael R. Frontani
  • Narrated by: James Langton
  • Length: 9 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3

The Beatles: Image and the Media charts the transformation of the Beatles from teen idols to leaders of the youth movement and powerful cultural agents. Drawing upon American mainstream print media, broadcasts, albums, films, and videos, the study covers the band's career in the United States. Michael R. Frontani explores how the Beatles' media image evolved and how this transformation related to cultural and historical events.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • An Academic Thesis On Beatles Media With A Re-Tell

  • By Robert Keith on 12-10-17

An Academic Thesis On Beatles Media With A Re-Tell

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 12-10-17

This book is less interesting for the Beatles story, which has been re-told countless times and better served in Tune In by Mark Lewisohn, which was published after this book. What is more interesting are the tidbits of information that we get about how the media culture at the time reacted to the Beatles. Unfortunately, the book is mostly padded with the Beatles story with not enough media reaction. The narration was good, but nothing in the book really grabbed me.

  • Paul McCartney

  • The Life
  • By: Philip Norman
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Keeble
  • Length: 30 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 239
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 222
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 218

Since the age of 21, Paul McCartney has lived one of the ultimate rock 'n' roll lives, played out on the most public of stages. Now Paul's story is told by rock music's foremost biographer, with McCartney's consent and access to family members and close friends who have never spoken on the record before.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Better than average McCartney bio

  • By tru britty on 05-14-16

I prefer the Barry Miles / Tune In bios

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-05-17

This bio is fine and covers some oft-missed career points. If "Tune In" is the new gospel in Beatles lore, a good amount of the early history in this book is inaccurate. The Jane Asher period is better covered in Barry Miles' McCartney bio. The Band on the Run period is better told in Geoff Emerick's book. The best part of this book covers post-Band on the Run Wings through Paul's drug bust in Japan. The drug bust story is very interesting and compelling, and well worth the price of this bio. On the downside, there is a lot of celebrity name dropping throughout the book, especially post-1980, which I find boring. The biggest drag with this Paul bio is the Heather Mills divorce, which seems to gobble up the last 1/3 of the bio. Having been through a divorce myself, I found this part thoroughly depressing, sad and even catty. I felt like I was invading Paul McCartney's private misery for 100+ pages. Poor man. The narration is excellent throughout the audiobook.

  • The Producer

  • John Hammond and the Soul of American Music
  • By: Dunstan Prial
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 12 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 8

The son of a Vanderbilt heiress, John Hammond listened to jazz records with his parents’ servants, went to Harlem as a teenager, and became a regular in clubs where very few white faces ever appeared. Taking a little family money, Hammond went across racial lines in pre-World War II America and came back with recordings of some of the greatest jazz musicians in history. By age twenty-two, he had convinced Benny Goodman to integrate his band and made his first big discovery: Billie Holiday.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • The Straw That Stirred The Drink

  • By Timothy on 03-02-11

A Nicely Written History of a 20th Century Giant

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-16-17

This book is a fascinating study of the eccentric life of John Hammond. Prial is fair about Hammond, noting his strengths and flaws. Overall, the audio narration is excellent, although there are quite a few edits that are jarringly spliced. Towards the end of the book, Prial pontificates about Flock of Seagulls or Duran Duran being artistically invalid compared to Stevie Ray Vaughan. This was Prial's "naughty" Hammond moment that probably should have been cut. Tsk Tsk! This comment aside, the book is well researched and presented. I learned a lot and recommend this one!

  • Love's Forever Changes (33 1/3 Series)

  • By: Andrew Hultkrans
  • Narrated by: Jeremy Beck
  • Length: 2 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 8
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 7
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 7

Forever Changes speaks to the present in ways that, say, a Jefferson Airplane record never could, whatever the parallels between the late '60s and our contemporary morass. For unlike most rock musicians of his time, Arthur Lee was one member of the 60's counterculture who didn't buy flower-power wholesale, who intuitively understood that letting the sunshine in wouldn't instantly vaporize the world's (or his own) dark stuff.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Tangential

  • By Robert Keith on 07-18-17

Tangential

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-18-17

What did you like best about Love's Forever Changes (33 1/3 Series)? What did you like least?

There were a few nuggets in this short book that I was unaware of. It is interesting that Arthur Lee had seen Marat/Sade multiple times and drew inspiration from it. Hulkrans rolls the dice on other possible points of inspiration, including existentialism (heavily), Buddhism (briefly) and the gnostics (a curious tangent). While it's possible that Lee had this depth of academic knowledge when he was composing the lyrics for Forever Changes, the author is indulging in a LOT of guesswork. Granted, Arthur Lee was a mysterious figure who did not yield his secrets easily, so it may have been difficult to find more clues about Lee's direct inspiration. Hulkrans also focuses HEAVILY on the dark side of LA, including mysticism and the Mansons. I understand why Hulkrans would want to allude to Manson and Altamont, demonstrating that Lee was prophetic about human nature and the fall of the hippie, but too much time is spent discussing events that happened years after this album. Also, I hear conflict and, at times, cynicism, in Arthur Lee's lyrics, but Forever Changes is also about hope as well. The optimistic side of Forever Changes does not get an equal airing. The analysis in this book focuses more on the assertion by Alban “Snoopy” Pfisterer that the group should have been called "Hate." Cited information about the actual crafting of the album and the music can probably fill less than 5 pages.

Has Love's Forever Changes (33 1/3 Series) turned you off from other books in this genre?

I like Geeta Dayal's book on Brian Eno's Another Green World. You can't really pass judgment on the entire series, because the quality of each book depends on the bias of the author.

What about Jeremy Beck’s performance did you like?

I thought Beck's performance was good.

Any additional comments?

I will never listen to this book again. Hulkran's take is interesting, but a lot of the information is tangential and probably would have been better suited to an op-ed piece. The book would have benefitted from more straight journalism.

  • A Natural Woman

  • A Memoir
  • By: Carole King
  • Narrated by: Carole King
  • Length: 14 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 277
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 254
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 252

Carole King takes us from her early beginnings in Brooklyn to her remarkable success as one of the world's most acclaimed songwriting and performing talents of all time. A Natural Woman chronicles King's extraordinary life, drawing listeners into her musical world, including her phenomenally successful number-one album Tapestry, and into her journey as a performer, mother, wife, and present-day activist.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • The Baby Boom Generation's Big Sister

  • By Thomas A. Morgan on 04-17-12

I wish there was more about the songwriter & songs

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-23-17

Would you try another book from Carole King and/or Carole King?

It took me several tries to mine through this one. The book seems like it was written as a memoir for Carole's future great great grandchildren. For example, she spends pages explaining what a 45 rpm record is compared to other formats and how things have changed thanks to iTunes. Frankly, I found passages like this utterly bewildering. I was hoping that she would spend more time talking about the fantastic songs that she wrote. If you want to get to know Carole the songwriter, look elsewhere. If you want a very basic outline of what she has been doing, who she has worked with and where she has been, this book may appeal.

Would you ever listen to anything by Carole King again?

If she wrote a book about songwriting? Yes. Another memoir? No.

What does Carole King bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Carole's narration is very good and has a sweetness that no one else could match.

  • Dark Disciple: Star Wars

  • By: Christie Golden, Katie Lucas (Foreword)
  • Narrated by: Marc Thompson
  • Length: 11 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,911
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 5,530
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,516

In the war for control of the galaxy between the armies of the dark side and the Republic, former Jedi Master turned ruthless Sith Lord Count Dooku has grown ever more brutal in his tactics. Despite the powers of the Jedi and the military prowess of their clone army, the sheer number of fatalities is taking a terrible toll. And when Dooku orders the massacre of a flotilla of helpless refugees, the Jedi Council feels it has no choice but to take drastic action: targeting the man responsible for so many war atrocities, Count Dooku himself.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Clone Wars Continues

  • By Troy on 07-07-15

Great Asajj Ventress, OK Quinlan Vos

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-29-16

Would you consider the audio edition of Dark Disciple: Star Wars to be better than the print version?

I did not read the print version. The audio version was well recorded and wonderfully acted by Marc Thompson, as usual. Why he isn't doing voice characters on any of the animated series is beyond me!

Would you be willing to try another book from Christie Golden and Katie Lucas (Foreword) ? Why or why not?

I liked the story, although the Ventress story was far better than the Vos one. Christie Golden nailed the characterization of Asajj Ventress. Ventress, one of the best and most complex characters in the SW canon is satisfying, both in detail and emotional resonance. The story of Quinlan Vos was distracting. Vos, a Jedi Master, was too willing to embrace the dark side to complete this mission. I didn't feel that his motivations were adequately explained. If the Jedi are known for one thing, it is understanding and resisting the dark side. No Jedi, and especially a Jedi Master, should be so willing to sell out his principles without serious backstory and justification. Ventress was given pride of place and Vos simply helped drive the story.

What does Marc Thompson bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Marc Thompson is awesome. He elevates any material that he reads.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The Ventress story made the book with reading, regardless of my scruples over Vos. I am glad that I read this book.

  • Where the Heart Beats

  • John Cage, Zen Buddhism, and the Inner Life of Artists
  • By: Kay Larson
  • Narrated by: Jason Wineinger
  • Length: 15 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 35
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 32
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 32

Composer John Cage sought the silence of a mind at peace with itself - and found it in Zen Buddhism, a spiritual path that changed both his music and his view of the universe. "Remarkably researched, exquisitely written", Where the Heart Beats weaves together "a great many threads of cultural history" (Maria Popova, Brain Pickings) to illuminate Cage’s struggle to accept himself and his relationship with choreographer Merce Cunningham. Freed to be his own man, Cage originated exciting experiments that set him at the epicenter of a new avant-garde forming in the 1950s.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Mind Expansion

  • By Robert Keith on 04-04-15

Mind Expansion

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-04-15

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This was a thrilling trip through the 20th Century of conceptual art and music. The book is primarily about Cage and his ideas, but also touches on those who influenced him, like the Dadaists, Duchamp and Suzuki, the major artists that he influenced ( primarily those he met before he became famous in the late 1950s).

What was one of the most memorable moments of Where the Heart Beats?

For artists and people interested in art, and especially ideas that challenge convention, this book is ideal.

Which character – as performed by Jason Wineinger – was your favorite?

The narrator did a nice job, with a few odd pronounciations here and there. His impression of Cage was spot on.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

It is a book that I would want to listen to again. It is packed with ideas.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Tune In

  • The Beatles: All These Years
  • By: Mark Lewisohn
  • Narrated by: Clive Mantle
  • Length: 43 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 872
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 814
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 817

Tune In is the first volume of All These Years - a highly-anticipated, groundbreaking biographical trilogy by the world's leading Beatles historian. Mark Lewisohn uses his unprecedented archival access and hundreds of new interviews to construct the full story of the lives and work of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Insanely great

  • By Tad Davis on 12-17-13

Incredible. Nearly 44 Hours Long.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-06-15

If you could sum up Tune In in three words, what would they be?

Incredible. Essential. Fanatstic.

What other book might you compare Tune In to and why?

It is similar to the Bob Spitz Beatles biography. Lewisohn really tried to get back to square one and get the facts straight. There is some amazing new information included with objective honesty.

What about Clive Mantle’s performance did you like?

Clive Mantle was great. A few of the pronunciations were odd, like Astrid's last name. His impression of Little Richard was downright weird, but I loved it. He did an awesome job and his Paul McCartney is dead on.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Being 44 hours long, I'd have to take a lot of Prellies to do it in one shot, so no. I loved every second of it, though.

Any additional comments?

The best value I've had on Audible so far.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful