Breaking Records gives a narrative history of American popular music and the pop music industry. Organized by decade, each chapter gives an overview of the major developments, technologically, commercially, and musically, for all types of popular music making. Technological developments, from the birth of radio and the phonograph to MP3 and burning CDs, are discussed in relation to how they affected musicians and the industry itself. Key performers and their major hits are profiled by decade. This is a compelling story of how business and art have interacted, and sometimes clashed, through a century of new musical developments.

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