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Editor's Choice: The Essential Ellen Willis

By Jeff Simon
The Buffalo News

Willis_Essential coverAmong the revolutionary, quasi-revolutionary and merely new things that happened to the world during the late-’60s and early-’70s was an entirely new species of brilliantly disheveled American writer: the rock writer. We’d never really had them before. And then, suddenly it seemed, we had Lester Bangs, Richard Meltzer, Peter Guralnick, Robert Christgau, Nick Tosches, Greil Marcus, Dave Marsh, Robert Palmer, all manner of writers who took rock seriously enough to – in many cases – concoct life and prose styles completely congruent with its energies. Even if you couldn’t share their musical fanaticism, you could be overjoyed at something new in American prose that was being born in front of our eyes.

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The Essential Ellen Willis