10 Best Music Books of 2016

From the stage to the page: The year's best memoirs, essay collections and more

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'Flyboy 2: The Greg Tate Reader,' by Greg Tate

'Flyboy 2: The Greg Tate Reader,' by Greg Tate

A Rolling Stone contributor, Greg Tate's ferocious, slang-tinged salvos and deep-rooted historical analysis have inspired readers and intimidated colleagues for decades. This sequel to the 1992 collection Flyboy in the Buttermilk felt particularly acute in the context of 2016's nonstop stream of racial horror, whether Tate is delineating visual artist Kara Walker's unflinching slavery-era silhouettes or eulogizing Richard Pryor and Michael Jackson: "The real question of the hour is, How many other Black American men born in Gary in 1958 lived to see their 24th birthday in 1982, the year Thriller broke the world open louder than a cobalt bomb and remade Black American success in Michael's before-and-after image?" M.M.

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