Minnesota Historical Society- Music Lover Books

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Prince: Before the Rain- Photography: Allen Beaulieu

Prince: Before the Rain paints another important picture in the mythology of the celebrated, influential, and endlessly invigorating performer while providing an intimate portrait of the Minnesota artist about to take over the world.

Hardcover, 224 pages, 9x10 inches, 250 Color and B&W Photos


First Avenue- Chris Riemenschneider

Where Prince and Minnesota made rock 'n' roll history - a glorious look at one of rock's most storied clubs and the hundreds of musicians who took the stage there

Hardback, 264 pages, 320 color and 100 b&w photos, 9.25x10.625 inches


Complicated Fun

The Birth of Minneapolis Punk and Indie Rock, 1974-1984 --- An Oral History

The origins of Minneapolis’s legendary indie rock scene, as told by the people who were there and made it happen.
Paperback, 392 pages, 80 b&w photos and illustrations, 6x9 inches
Heyday  -35 Years of Music in Minneapolis

Photography by Daniel Corrigan, with text by Danny Sigelman

A look back at more than three decades of music in Minneapolis through the lens of one of the most prolific and renowned photographers on the scene.
Paperback, 224 pages, 483 Color and B&W Photos, 10x10 inches
Loud Fast Words  -Soul Asylum Collected Lyrics

Author Dave Pirner

The collected lyrics of one of the most beloved alternative rockers of the past thirty years, with insights into the creative process behind the songs.
Paperback, 320 pages, 30 b&w photos, 6 x 9 inches
I Live Inside

Babes in Toyland burst onto the Minneapolis music scene in the late 1980s and quickly established itself at the forefront of punk/alternative rock. The all-female trio featured a shy, seventeen-year-old Jewish teen from the suburbs on bass guitar—an instrument she had never played before joining the band. 

Over the next few years, Michelle Leon lived the rock-and-roll lifestyle—playing live concerts, recording in studios, touring across the United States and Europe, and spending endless hours in stuffy vans, staying in two-star motels, and sleeping on strangers’ couches in town after town. The grind and drama of life in the band gradually wore on Leon, however, and a heartbreaking tragedy led her to rethink her commitment to the band and the music scene. 

Leon’s sensitive, sensory prose puts readers right on stage with Babes in Toyland while also conveying the uncertainty, vulnerability, and courage needed by a girl who never felt like she fit in to somehow find her place in the world.


Hijinx and Hearsay: Scenster Stories from Minnesota's Pop Life

A look back at famous and infamous artists, musicians, and entertainers who came through Minnesota, viewed through stellar photos and engaging stories from two guys who were there on the scene.

In the summer of 1979, while disco was dying and new wave and punk were rising from the underground, two twenty-something guys were thrown together on a new music monthly ignobly called Sweet Potato. One had a Canon camera, the other a thirty-six-pound Royal typewriter. Over the next several years, the two chronicled the Minneapolis scene and the cultural landscape of the Twin Cities, covering some of the most influential artists, musicians, writers, comedians, and entertainers of the past forty years. They profiled legendary musicians from across the globe and across musical genres—Paul and Linda McCartney, Bob Marley, U2, James Brown, John Lee Hooker, Devo, and more—as well as homegrown talents ranging from Dylan and Prince to the Replacements and Hüsker Dü. They covered such disparate writers as William Burroughs and Dr. Seuss, and young, up-and-coming comedians like Jerry Seinfeld, Louie Anderson, and Lizz Winstead.​

In Hijinx and Hearsay, writer Martin Keller and photographer Greg Helgeson are at it again, offering a delectable, fun, and fresh perspective through Helgeson's photography (much of it never seen before) and new stories and insights by Keller that shed fascinating light on a singular, influential era in popular culture in Minnesota.