‘Anthems We Love’ book dives into 29 classic songs


by Best Classic Bands Staff



A new book to be released this fall examines 29 classic songs by Jefferson Airplane, The Doors, the Beach Boys, Carly Simon and more and explains how they achieved anthem status. The title, Anthems we lovefrom music journalist Steve Baltin, arrives October 25, 2022 in the US (and November 10 in the UK) via Harper Horizon.

Cameron Crowe, who wrote the foreword, calls it “a handbook for artists and fans. There is no formula. Just those heartwarming stories and Steve Baltin’s sparkling portraits of those artists who leaned into their souls and often accidentally created indelible songs for all time.

These “indelible songs”, which Baltin delves into through interviews with artists about their creative process, include Aerosmith’s “Walk This Way”, Toto’s “Africa”, Hall & Oates’ “Sara Smile”, “White Rabbit” from The Airplane and “September” from Earth, Wind & Fire.

Excerpt from the publisher’s announcement: Which Beach Boys song makes Paul McCartney cry? What makes “Light My Fire” a rite of passage song for teenagers of all generations, according to Doors guitarist Robby Krieger?

Whether you heard KISS’ “Rock and Roll All Nite” at a party in 1975 or 2015, Anthems we love features all-new storytelling and nostalgia on songs that transcend generations, like the perennial favorite wedding song “My Girl,” by The Temptations. As the book’s author notes, “I’ve had the good fortune of speaking to many of the greatest living songwriters – from Willie Nelson, Neil Young and Stevie Wonder to Dolly Parton, Stevie Nicks and Alicia Keys – and they say all the same thing: that once they have brought a song into the world, it no longer belongs to them.

Southern California-based author and journalist baltine turned his teenage passion for music into a career as a writer for rolling stone, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Grandstand, Playboyand many more, plus host of the “My Turning Point” podcast and Amazon Prime/Hulu streaming series riffing with.

Related: Lists for hundreds of classic rock tours

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Grace D. Erickson