is an American
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...
music critic, writer on music, and historian of US American popular music, who is also active as an author and screenwriter. He has been married for over 45 years to Alexandra. He has a son and daughter, Jacob and Nina.
Guralnick's first two books, Almost Grown
(1964) and Mister Downchild
(1967), were short story collections published by Larry Stark
Larry Stark is an American journalist and reviewer best known for his in-depth coverage of the Boston theater scene at his website, Theater Mirror. In newspapers and online, Stark has written hundreds of reviews of local productions and Broadway tryouts from 1962 to the present...
, whose small press in Cambridge
Cambridge is a city in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States, in the Greater Boston area. It was named in honor of the University of Cambridge in England, an important center of the Puritan theology embraced by the town's founders. Cambridge is home to two of the world's most prominent...
, Larry Stark Press, was devoted to stories and poems. Mona Dickson, writing in MIT's The Tech
(May 13, 1964) gave Almost Grown
a favorable review. http://tech.mit.edu/archives/VOL_084/TECH_V084_S0180_P009.pdf
After Guralnick graduated from Boston University
Boston University is a private research university located in Boston, Massachusetts. With more than 4,000 faculty members and more than 31,000 students, Boston University is one of the largest private universities in the United States and one of Boston's largest employers...
in 1971 with a master's degree
A master's is an academic degree granted to individuals who have undergone study demonstrating a mastery or high-order overview of a specific field of study or area of professional practice...
in creative writing, he began writing books chronicling the history of blues, country
Country music is a popular American musical style that began in the rural Southern United States in the 1920s. It takes its roots from Western cowboy and folk music...
, rock and roll
Rock and roll is a genre of popular music that originated and evolved in the United States during the late 1940s and early 1950s, primarily from a combination of African American blues, country, jazz, and gospel music...
Soul music is a music genre originating in the United States combining elements of gospel music and rhythm and blues. According to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, soul is "music that arose out of the black experience in America through the transmutation of gospel and rhythm & blues into a form of...
His two-volume biography of Elvis Presley
Elvis Aaron Presley was one of the most popular American singers of the 20th century. A cultural icon, he is widely known by the single name Elvis. He is often referred to as the "King of Rock and Roll" or simply "the King"....
, Last Train to Memphis
in 1994, followed by Careless Love
in 1999, placed the story of Presley's career into a rise and fall arc. Encompassing more than 1,300 pages (including 1,150 pages of text), the work countered earlier biographies such as Albert Goldman's
Albert Harry Goldman was an American professor and author.Born in Dormont, Pennsylvania, Albert Goldman wrote about the culture and personalities of the American music industry both in books and as a contributor to magazines...
from 1981 with an in-depth, scholarly examination of Presley's life and music. Guralnick had previously written on Presley in the The Rolling Stone Illustrated History of Rock & Roll
, starting with the first edition in 1976, said article having been reprinted for each subsequent edition. He also contributed the complete text for the 240-page hardcover book featured in the 2010 30-disc CD boxed set, "The Complete Elvis Presley Masters".
In contrast to contemporaries such as Lester Bangs
Leslie Conway "Lester" Bangs was an American music journalist, author and musician. He wrote for Creem and Rolling Stone magazines, and was known for his leading influence in rock 'n' roll criticism....
, Ian Penman
Ian Penman is a British writer and, latterly, blogger. He began writing for the NME in the autumn of 1977, later contributing to various publications including Uncut, Arena, The Wire, The Face, The Guardian, The Times, The Sunday Times, The Independent, Screen and German Vogue.Many of Penman's...
and Nick Tosches
Nick Tosches is an American journalist, novelist, biographer, and poet of Albanian and Italian descent.- Life :After different odd-jobs, Tosches started writing with poetry and rock-'n'-roll magazines, including Creem, Fusion, and Rolling Stone.Tosches' second book, a biography of Jerry Lee Lewis...
, whose music writings are marked by idiosyncratic, self-referential and highly personal styles, Guralnick's writing is characterized by a colloquial approach that is clean and understated by comparison. In his best passages, he has an ability to simultaneously empathize and remain objective. Writing as a music fan, his enthusiasm powers his writing but doesn't overpower it.
Guralnick wrote the script for A&E
The A&E Network is a United States-based cable and satellite television network with headquarters in New York City and offices in Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, London, Los Angeles and Stamford. A&E also airs in Canada and Latin America. Initially named the Arts & Entertainment Network, A&E launched...
's documentary, Sam Phillips
Samuel Cornelius Phillips , better known as Sam Phillips, was an American businessman, record executive, record producer and DJ who played an important role in the emergence of rock and roll as the major form of popular music in the 1950s...
: The Man Who Invented Rock 'n' Roll
, narrated by Billy Bob Thornton
Billy Bob Thornton is an American actor, screenwriter, director and musician. Thornton gained early recognition as a cast member on the CBS sitcom Hearts Afire and in several early 1990s films including On Deadly Ground and Tombstone...
, and he also scripted Sam Cooke
Samuel Cook, , better known under the stage name Sam Cooke, was an American gospel, R&B, soul, and pop singer, songwriter, and entrepreneur. He is considered to be one of the pioneers and founders of soul music. He is commonly known as the King of Soul for his distinctive vocal abilities and...
narrated by Jeffrey Wright.
In 1971, he succeeded his grandfather as director of an athletic camp for boys, Camp Alton. It was located on Lake Winnipesaukee
Lake Winnipesaukee is the largest lake in the U.S. state of New Hampshire. It is approximately long and from wide , covering — when Paugus Bay is included—with a maximum depth of ....
in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire
Wolfeboro is a town in Carroll County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 6,269 at the 2010 census. A venerable resort area situated beside Lake Winnipesaukee, Wolfeboro includes the village of Wolfeboro Falls...
. The camp closed in 1992.
- Peter Guralnick (1964). Almost Grown. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Larry Stark Press.
- Peter Guralnick (1967). Mister Downchild. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Larry Stark Press. Reprinted 1999. ISBN 0316332720
- Peter Guralnick (1982). The Listener's Guide to The Blues. New York: Facts on File, Inc.
- "An Interview with Peter Guralnick" by Griffin Ondaatje and Craig Proctor, Brick: A Literary Journal, Issue 62, Spring 1999.
- "Caught in a Trap". Peter S. Sholtes interviews Peter Guralnick. City Pages Media, January 13, 1999. Archived from the original, 2001-05-26.
- For Guralnick, birthday bash starts the Elvis bandwagon rolling By Clarissa Sansone, March 2002. Country Standard Time
Country Standard Time is a website dedicated to country music and related genres such as Bluegrass and Rockabilly. It provides news and musical reviews pertaining to the genre. It was established in 1992 by Jeffrey B. Remz as a print magazine, which was first published only in New England but went...
. Guralnick at SXSW.
- Authors: Peter Guralnick. Time Warner
Time Warner is one of the world's largest media companies, headquartered in the Time Warner Center in New York City. Formerly two separate companies, Warner Communications, Inc...
Bookmark. Archived from the original 2002-02-12.
- "Elvis Presley: Baby What You Want Me To Do". By Robert Baird, May 2000. Stereophile
Stereophile is a monthly magazine that focuses on high end audio equipment, such as loudspeakers and amplifiers, and audio-related news, such as online audio streaming. It was founded in 1962 by J. Gordon Holt....
- Camp Alton - Official website