PRE-ORDER: An Ideal For Living- A Celebration of the E.P. (Extended Play) BOOK – by Corey du Browa & friends


200+ pages, softcover
ISBN: 979-8-9881170-4-9
1st edition of 600

The extended play recording. Not quite an album. More than a single. And not only an artifact of the vinyl era, — the EP has survived and even thrived at every turn of the music industry’s evolution, from vinyl to tape to CD to stream. This definitive book unearths the EP’s origins, history and cultural impact and enlists nearly 50 music-industry veterans (musicians, scribes, producers, executives, superfans) to create a list of the 200 Best EPs ever recorded and shapes these opinions into a book that seeks to trace the arc of the EP’s development and, in so doing, chart the history of the music industry writ large.

SKU: HZB-023 Category: Tags: ,


Hozac Books is proud to present An Ideal For Living- A Celebration of the E.P. (Extended Play) by Corey du Browa & friends. An impressive first overview & history of the often-neglected E.P. format, whether a 6-track 3” CD, a 4-track 7”, a 5-track 10”, or a 6-track 12”, the E.P. is the sweet spot between a “single” and an album/LP and it’s time you recognized how many great specimens there truly are. From Dangerhouse to Touch & Go to Sub Pop to Flying Nun, and all roads in between, savvy labels have used the E.P. to great effect and its been the way to introduce bands in a less risky mid-sized format for decades. This super-interesting guide shows how the format developed and how it took on a life of its own, from early jazz & rock’n roll through the beat & psychedelic rock era, right on through punk, new wave, and post-punk, and into the alternative/indie rock era, right up to the modern age. This rousing guide through the mid-sized mindset features a huge swath of guest writers galore, each offering up their enthusiastic opinions on which E.P.s deserve your attention, divided by decade, along with all of their details on long-forgotten B-sides and extras that couldn’t fit on the 7” version, yet easily pad out a 12”.

…In simplest terms: an EP is a sound recording that contains more tracks/recorded time than a single but fewer than an album or LP (Long Play) record. The first EPs were typically seven-inch records with more tracks than a typical single (usually, four to eight). Although these releases shared a size and speed with 45 RPM singles, they were a recognizably different format than the seven-inch single – and often given a different title than just the “lead track” or hit that might be included. The Beatles’ The Beatles’ Hits EP from 1963 (which included “Please Please Me” and “Love Me Do”) and the Kinks’ Kinksize Hits from 1965 (“You Really Got Me,” “All Day and All of the Night”) are examples of this, collecting previously released tracks and radio/chart hits in a single economical package.

Playing time of most EPs has generally been between 10 to 30 minutes of recorded sound, and early on, these releases came in cardboard picture sleeves at a time when singles were usually issued only in paper-thin record label company logo sleeves. As form factors changed over the years, 10 and 12-inch vinyl discs, cassettes, compact discs (CDs) and digital downloads and streams would all assume EP-length dimensions, which came to be defined less as a strict number of tracks or playing time vs. four or more tracks of equal importance, as opposed to a four-track single with an obvious “A-side” and numerous other “B’s” worth of filler.

Beyond this narrow and somewhat amorphous explainer, a history of the EP seems to be in order, as a way to both understand where the origins of the EP lay and how we got to the present day, where EPs have become as valid a commercial and artistic release platform as an LP, single or any other format in a streaming/less-object-oriented environment.

Featuring contributions from Camilla Aisa, A.D. Amorosi, Rick Anguilla, Andrew Beaujon, Jonathan Blunk, Tim Bugbee, M.J. Call, Jason Cohen, Byron Coley, Britt Daniel, Joe Ehrbar, Rob Elba, Neil Ferguson, Jeff Gold, Glenn Francis Griffith, Matt Hickey, Tim Hinely, Jon D. Hurwitz, Steve Klinge, Joseph Kyle, David Menconi, Steve Michener, Eric T. Miller, Nathan Misner, Kevin Moyer, Tom Murphy, Molly Neuman, Al Quint, Jim Riswold, Nickolas Rossi, Jason Roth, Matt Ryan, Chris Slusarenko, David Smay, Tim Stegall, Kevin Stewart-Panko, Matt Teper, Pat Thomas, Eric Waggoner, Henry Wimmer, Annie Zaleski, & Scott Zuppardo

Foreword by Britt Daniel (Spoon) / Epilogue by Chris Slusarenko (Sprinkler, Guided By Voices, Boston Spaceships, Eyelids)

Corey duBrowa has been a freelance contributing editor and music journalist for more than two decades, penning more than 1200 bylines in publications such as Rolling Stone, GQ, MAGNET Magazine, Paste, No Depression, Village Voice, Seattle Weekly, the Stranger, the Oregonian, Willamette Week, and the sorely-missed Seattle weekly the Rocket (R.I.P.).

Additional information

Weight 14 oz

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