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Publisher's Summary

In 1974, at the age of 17, author Glenn Berger served as "schlepper" and apprentice to the legendary recording engineer Phil Ramone at New York City's A&R Studios, and was witness to music history on an almost daily and nightly basis as pop and rock icons such as Paul Simon, Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger, Frank Sinatra, Burt Bacharach, Bette Midler, and James Brown performed their hit-making magic, honed their sound, strutted their stuff, bared their souls, and threw epic tantrums. In this memoir, full of revelatory and previously unknown anecdotal observations of these musical giants, Berger recounts how he quickly learned the ropes to move up from schlepperhood to assistant to the tyrannical Ramone, and eventually, to become a recording engineer superstar himself. Not only is Never Say No to a Rock Star a fascinating, hilarious, and poignant behind-the-scenes look of this musical Mecca, but Berger, now a prominent psychologist, looking back through the prism of his youthful experience and his years working as a counselor and therapist, provides a telling and honest examination of the nature of fame and success and the corollaries between creativity, madness, and self-destruction.

©2016 Glenn Berger (P)2017 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"With humor and self-deprecation, Berger shares a glimpse of life behind the scenes with artists including the New York Dolls and Solomon Burke." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

terrific and compelling look behind the soundboard

this is a very very complaint for me, but I wish it was longer. I can only imagine he has hundreds more of these stories. initially, I wondered why it took him 40 years to tell his story. it was published in 2017, but the bulk of the action tales place in early 70s

However, that time have him the gift of reflection and insight he now has as a professional therapist. looking back at those halcyon days of the early 70s, I can only think those artists needed a good therapist as mich as they needed a great engineer.

quick clarification for those who don't know the business. The engineer, which Berger was, works the board... He comes with the studio. a producer is one who works the songs, like "that intro was great. let's add 8 more bars to it. take the third verse and let's swap it with them second verse right before the chorus"

don't worry, it's. it a technical tale of faders and equalizers. it is, of course, about the people. He got to mentor under one of the greatest engineers of all time, Phil Ramone. his memory is keen, and he doesn't hold back his feelings of contempt or appreciation. sure, we expected Dylan to be stand-offish ... but his Paul Simon stories were the most compelling to me.

Lastly, the book has one of the most important things you can possibly get in an audiobook: it is read by the author himself. with this, you get the inflection and pathos you won't necessarily get with a professional narrator.

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Interesting and entertaining

A pure pleasure to listen to, well written with an honest portrayal of of some of the biggest names in the music business. A teeneager living out his dream, sometimes his worst nightmare, during a time when recording was an art form. This inside look at the different artists, and the authors opinions of many, is enlightening, from start to finish. An obvious groundwork for the life and future of the author. Carrying myself back to the era when life was so much different than it is today.

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pretty good

pretty good. story and reader pretty good. a little rock world. a little life advice.