Moguls and Madmen: The Pursuit of Power in Popular Music

Front Cover
Simon & Schuster, 1994 - Music - 319 pages
1 Review
Rock and roll started as a devil's dance and a shout of ecstasy, and ever since it has carved its path between those who want to control it and those who want to push it to the edge - or over the edge. A blend of profile, criticism, investigative reporting, and history, Moguls and Madmen is a compelling look at today's often explosive, at times out-of-control, music industry. It's a collection of stories from the culture's shadow world - tales of guns and gangs, sex and drugs, greed and lawsuits - told through the eyes of both the moguls seeking power and money and the artists seeking fame and fortune. Jory Farr, a Pulitzer Prize nominee for his popular-music criticism, presents a haunting, behind-the-scenes view of some of the most influential and controversial people in this strange world. In Moguls and Madmen, you'll meet Geffen Records A&R hotshot Tom Zutaut, the man who signed Guns N' Roses and tried to turn Nymphs lead singer and she-demon Inger Lorre into the next star of grunge rock - but found he got more than he bargained for. And you'll enter the hostile world of Jerry Heller and Eazy-E, two gansta-rap moguls - one white, the other black - who sell misogyny and violence to the youth of America. You'll get to know Jonny Zazula, a stormy ex-hippie turned impresario, as he and his wife try to manage Al Jourgensen and Ministry on a drugged-out ascent to fame. You'll travel south, where Nashville kingpin and egomaniac Jimmy Bowen, the man who took the honk out of country music, sells the slick new sound to mainstream America. And you'll step into the dark kingdom of Rick Rubin, who founded Def Jam Records in his college dorm room and signed Public Enemy, L.L. Cool J, the GetoBoys, and Slayer, turning his passion for rap and metal into a multimillion-dollar empire. Dark, funny, outrageous, and far-reaching, Moguls and Madmen gives an unprecedented glimpse into the secret world of the people who run the business, manipulating music, mythology, and image for their own ends.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

Moguls and madmen: the pursuit of power in popular music

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

In this examination of the unsavory characters working behind the record-industry scenes, Farr explores ground similar to that covered by Fredric Dannen in Hit Men (Vintage, 1991). Farr has smaller ... Read full review


Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 4

3 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

Bibliographic information