WEST POINT – After two and a half years and countless interviews with rock musicians around the country, West Point author and music critic Pete Crigler's second book is available online.
"Majorlabelland and Assorted Oddities," published by the independent publishing house, iUniverse, is a follow-up to Crigler's 2010 debut, "Keeping It Tight in the Old Dominion: A History of Virginia Rock Music," which detailed the rich history of rock 'n' roll music throughout Virginia.
"Majorlabelland" is comprised of an extra-long essay about rock bands spanning from the late 80s to the early 2000s and their experiences with major labels.
According to Crigler, a music journalist and blogger for the past five years, the book explores both the positive and negative aspects of working with a major label. Some bands, he said, had their records shelved and never released.
Crigler, like those he interviewed, is admittedly candid in his writing style.
"It's very, very open, brash and honest," Crigler said. "I've had people ask me about using curse words, but when I am quoting someone, I use them because it's more authentic."
Many of the musicians Crigler grew up idolizing, such as former Squirrel Nut Zippers vocalist Tom Maxwell, are now people he considers friends and musical sages.
"I have loved music from birth. When I was younger, I would look at heavy metal magazines because I couldn't read yet," Crigler said. "I started subscribing to Rolling Stone magazine when I was six years-old.
Crigler gained entertainment wisdom while working on "Majorlabelland."
"A lot of people in the industry said that if you are in a rock band, you should be in control of your career," Crigler said.
One example, Crigler said, is Uncle Green, a band out of Georgia, who took their old master tapes and remixed them. The new product received critical acclaim from record producers and fans.
As well as working full-time at Wyatt-Ogg Radio Shack in West Point, Crigler works for online magazines Perfect Sound Forever and Lithium Magazine. When he isn't writing, Crigler is building his vast collection of music DVDs, CDs, vinyl, and books.
Both of Crigler's books, "Majorlabelland and Assorted Oddities" and "Keeping It Tight in the Old Dominion: A History of Virginia Rock Music," are available at amazon.com.
Martin can be reached by phone at 804-885-0040.