Chuck Eddy “Terminated for Reasons of Taste” (Duke University Press, 2016)
Quick confession time: In what seems like a lifetime ago, I was one of those record store guys. I was a buyer for a big record store (one of the biggest), and I was a DJ waay back in the day of college radio. So I know a lot about music that not many people have actually heard.
I first encountered Chuck Eddy’s writing as I lurked around on ilxor.com (an old school message board that caters to music writers & high level record nerds). In fact portions of this book are reworked from some of his posts there.
Here’s the deal with Eddy: our aesthetics do not overlap. Off the top of my head I really can’t think of just about any contemporary music that we both like. And that’s OK. I still enjoy reading his thoughts on music. That’s the sign of a great music writer – is it enjoyable if you disagree with his taste?
His approach is in many ways similar to Chuck Klosterman. There’s a championing of commercial music from Middle America. If you are a fan of this stuff, or simply a contrarian, you should check this out. You’ll have food for late night arguments for years to come.
Don’t be mistaken & think that I am saying that only those people should read this book. Eddy is a major figure in contemporary music criticism, & needs to be read by anyone seriously interested in the subject. Just don’t make me listen to early Styx albums.