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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Mark A. Moore

New Biography Examines the Tragic Life of Jan Berry, a Pioneering Record Producer whose Music with Jan & Dean helped Establish the West Coast Sound in the late 1950s and Early 1960s.

RALEIGH, NC – Summer 2021 – A new book from an award-winning author chronicles the highs and lows of the hard-driving, fast-living Jan Berry. From the birth of Rock ‘n’ Roll to major chart success while still in high school, from the peak of fame with “Surf City” to the prophetic nightmare of “Dead Man’s Curve,” Jan’s life story is compelling and brutal.

In Dead Man’s Curve: The Rock ‘n’ Roll Life of Jan Berry ($49.95/$29.95 McFarland & Co., Summer 2021), author Mark A. Moore taps his years of research to illuminate the complexities of Jan’s dual life—from grueling hours in Hollywood’s finest recording studios, road gigs, and personal appearances to navigating his way through college at UCLA and medical school at the California College of Medicine.

Headstrong and charismatic, Jan thumbed his nose at authority, made his own rules, and lived his life on the edge. His candle burned brightly at both ends, fast meeting in the middle. In April 1966, at the height of his music career and during his second year of medical school, his world crumbled in an instant. After gaining a reputation as one of the best music arrangers and producers in Hollywood, with 16 Top 40 hits as an artist (including seven Top 10), and more than 20 chart records as a songwriter to his credit, Jan suffered brain damage and partial paralysis in an automobile accident that nearly killed him. He was 25 years old.

In Dead Man’s Curve: The Rock ‘n’ Roll Life of Jan Berry, Moore reveals Jan’s story in-depth for the first time, based on extensive primary source documentation and supplemented by the stories and memories of Jan’s family members, friends, music industry colleagues, and contemporaries.

Highlights include:



    • Jan’s rebellious youth, garage studio, and breakthrough in the music industry.
    • Stories behind the music of Jan & Arnie and Jan & Dean, including Berry’s work with Joe Lubin, Herb Alpert, and Lou Adler.
    • Jan’s tenure as a contract artist, songwriter, music arranger, and record producer for Nevins-Kirshner Associates and Screen Gems-Columbia Music.
    • His production work with the Wrecking Crew, the cream of the crop of Los Angeles studio musicians.
    • Firsthand insight from Dean Torrence, Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys, Joe Lubin, Arnie Ginsburg, Lou Adler, Bruce Johnston, Hal Blaine, Don Altfeld, Jill Gibson, Kim Fowley, music engineers Bones Howe and Lanky Linstrot, Artie Kornfeld, P. F. Sloan, Steve Barri, various Wrecking Crew musicians, and many others.
    • Jan’s writing, arranging, and producing for artists outside of Jan & Arnie and Jan & Dean.
    • Road stories.
    • Jan & Dean’s ill-fated film and television projects—scuttled by the kidnapping of Frank Sinatra Jr., a train collision, and the ultimate wipeout.
    • Jan’s personal life and workload in college and medical school.
    • His influence on his peers in the industry.
    • Details of his car accident, rehabilitation, and learning to walk and talk again.
    • His musical renaissance in 1967.
    • Heartaches and triumphs on the long road back from Dead Man’s Curve.
    • Jan’s solo career in the 1970s.
    • Paul Morantz’s 1974 Rolling Stone article and a behind-the-scenes look at the 1978 Jan & Dean film Deadman’s Curve.
    • Performing and touring with Jan’s solo band Aloha in 1977 and ’78.
    • His drug abuse and a nostalgic but troubled touring reunion with Dean Torrence.
    • Persevering . . . on the road and in the studio.[/size]
    “Jan Berry was a driven, self-assured controller,” says Moore. “Intellectually, from an early age, he was on a plane well above most of his peers. As part of a cadre of close-knit musicians and producers who defined the nascent California Rock scene, Jan made sure things went the way he wanted them to go, socially and creatively. His demeanor and personality drew those around him like moths to flame. His closest friends and creative associates marveled at his abilities, acknowledging him as a ‘good guy’ they liked working with and being around who could also be strict and demanding.”

    “After Jan’s car accident,” says Moore, “his ego remained intact, but his personality changed. He became more pliant. In the early days of the post-accident era, he suffered profound depression. His mood ranged from hostile and belligerent to an eagerness to please. He suffered from a severe impulse disorder that constantly threatened his musical renaissance and the best efforts of those trying to help him. He struggled to acknowledge his new limitations but as the years progressed, he kept striving to better himself musically and personally. His left-brain injury eroded his ability to communicate, resulting in bouts of rage and frustration. Yet his knowledge of and capacity for music remained intact, including his ability to read and write pitch notation. His residual capacity for music gave him a lifeline, something to live for, to help pull himself out of the darkness.”

    Moore has been researching Jan Berry’s life and career for more than 20 years. He served as consulting historian for “Jan & Dean: The Other Beach Boys” on the A&E network’s Biography series (2002). His book The Jan & Dean Record was published in 2016. His other published works on the subject include liner notes for Carnival of Sound (Rhino Handmade 2010), the Capitol Records digital reissues of the original Jan & Dean catalog (2011), Second Wave (Jan Berry Memorial Edition, Rainbo 2004), and various articles in Dumb Angel, Endless Summer Quarterly, and the official Jan Berry website.

    Dead Man’s Curve: The Rock ‘n’ Roll Life of Jan Berry (McFarland, $49.95, 426 pages, 7 x 10, paperback, 195 photos, maps & illustrations, 4 appendices, ISBN: 978-1-4766-7210-6 / $29.95 ebook, eISBN: 978-1-4766-4333-5) is available from online booksellers and at libraries in the United States and around the world. Online retailers include McFarland & Co. and Amazon.com, among others.

    For more information and to see the book’s Table of Contents, visit markmooreauthor.com and the official Jan Berry website: jananddean-janberry.com. View the promo video on YouTube and download a high-resolution image of the book cover.

    Print and Internet media may request a digital review copy of the book online from the publisher.

    # # #

    CONTACT: Mark A. Moore






    3
    Here's the promotional video for the book:

    https://youtu.be/SkuN7Mt8_fo

    4
    DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: When it’s Over
    « on: January 23, 2021, 11:57:30 AM »
    No, he arranged the music. I'll re-word that.

    5
    DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: LSU Pregame
    « on: December 27, 2020, 05:24:40 PM »
    Admit it, Phil . . . You were high when you wrote that.  :)

    6
    Hey Mark. I’ve pre-ordered the book and paid in full. Is there a solid timeline on when shipment will commence?

    Thank you for all your hard work. Can’t wait to read it!!

    Philip

    The book will be in McFarland's Spring catalog for 2021.

    My guess would be February, but I don't know.

    Once the publisher is finished with the layout, I still have to review the proofs and index the book.


    7
    N E W    B I O G R A P H Y

    Forthcoming in 2021.
    Pre-Order from McFarland & Co.

    Dead Man’s Curve: The Rock ’n’ Roll Life of Jan Berry
    By Mark A. Moore

    Jan Berry, leader of the successful music duo Jan & Dean from the late 1950s to mid-1960s, was an intense character who experienced more in his first 25 years than many do in a lifetime.

    As an architect of the West Coast Sound, he was one of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s original rebels—brilliant, charismatic, reckless, and flawed. He bucked authority and made his own rules. As a songwriter, music arranger, and record producer for Nevins-Kirshner Associates and Screen Gems-Columbia Music, Jan was one of the pioneering self-produced artists of his era in Hollywood. In addition to co-writing Jan & Dean’s most famous hits, he also penned hit songs for other artists.

    He lived a dual life unprecedented in the annals of popular music, reaching the top of the charts with Jan & Dean while transitioning from college student at UCLA to medical student at the California College of Medicine.

    Fast cars were an extension of his personality, but an automobile accident ended his seemingly charmed existence on April 12, 1966.

    Suffering from brain damage and partial paralysis, Jan spent the rest of his life trying to come back from Dead Man’s Curve. His story is told here in-depth for the first time—from the birth of Rock to the bitter end.



    7″ x 10″ paperback; 195 photos, illustrations, and maps; 4 Appendices; Bibliography; Index; $49.95 (print).
    pISBN: 978-1-4766-7210-6
    eISBN: 978-1-4766-4333-5


    8
    N E W    B I O G R A P H Y

    Forthcoming in 2021.
    Pre-Order from McFarland & Co.

    Dead Man’s Curve: The Rock ’n’ Roll Life of Jan Berry
    By Mark A. Moore

    Jan Berry, leader of the successful music duo Jan & Dean from the late 1950s to mid-1960s, was an intense character who experienced more in his first 25 years than many do in a lifetime.

    As an architect of the West Coast Sound, he was one of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s original rebels—brilliant, charismatic, reckless, and flawed. He bucked authority and made his own rules. As a songwriter, music arranger, and record producer for Nevins-Kirshner Associates and Screen Gems-Columbia Music, Jan was one of the pioneering self-produced artists of his era in Hollywood. In addition to co-writing Jan & Dean’s most famous hits, he also penned hit songs for other artists.

    He lived a dual life unprecedented in the annals of popular music, reaching the top of the charts with Jan & Dean while transitioning from college student at UCLA to medical student at the California College of Medicine.

    Fast cars were an extension of his personality, but an automobile accident ended his seemingly charmed existence on April 12, 1966.

    Suffering from brain damage and partial paralysis, Jan spent the rest of his life trying to come back from Dead Man’s Curve. His story is told here in-depth for the first time—from the birth of Rock to the bitter end.


    9
    DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Herb Alpert Documentary
    « on: October 19, 2020, 05:33:16 PM »
    Really interesting. I will deliberately repeat a point I have made before about the limited videos / photos of the time. Nowadays rock / media stars (including Z listers) photograph everything.
    Will your new biography be illustrated Mark?

    The biography, titled Dead Man's Curve: The Rock 'n' Roll Life of Jan Berry, will include 195 images. Currently in production at publisher McFarland & Co.


    10
    DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Herb Alpert Documentary
    « on: October 01, 2020, 09:55:46 PM »
    Jan & Dean fans . . . Don’t miss the new film titled “Herb Alpert Is,” an incredible documentary on one of the most important musicians of the twentieth century. In partnership with Lou Adler, Herb Alpert produced Jan & Dean’s first records between 1959 and 1961. While a lot of the parts on the early Jan & Dean records were done by Jan, Herb Alpert oversaw the arrangements in those early days, and he was one of Jan’s early influences. The film includes a brief Jan & Dean segment, with footage of “Baby Talk,” but I encourage you to watch the whole thing. The hits with the Tijuana Brass, A&M Records, the man himself. It’s a tremendous presentation of Alpert as a producer, singer, virtuoso trumpet player, record company owner, painter, and sculptor. He is still writing, performing, and recording in his mid-eighties. What a life.

    Herb Alpert Is
    https://www.herbalpertis.com/


    11
    DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: J&D’s skateboard
    « on: August 07, 2020, 08:28:21 AM »
    I don't know, but my guess would be that Jan or Dean gave him one. According to Dean, the boards never made it beyond the promotional stage. Dean rode one on The TAMI Show. Wayne's board also looks used, with scuff marks on the logo from riding it.

    Cool photo . . .



    Wayne Fontana with Jan & Dean's Sidewalk Surfer skateboard.

    R.I.P. Wayne . . . and thanks for the music.

    12
    DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: With friends post-accident
    « on: March 24, 2020, 04:50:55 PM »
    I found this picture online. Does anyone have more information about it? Place, occasion, date etc? Thanks in advance!




    I'm pretty sure this is 1967. Looks like Davy Jones sitting in the deck chair, looking at Jan.

    13
    DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / The board is back online
    « on: February 04, 2020, 07:57:48 PM »
    The entire site is now secure with an SSL certificate.

    14
    DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: RIP HAL BLAINE — (1929-2019)
    « on: March 11, 2019, 05:06:30 PM »
    Hal Blaine Tribute Video Courtesy of Denny Tedesco, Director of the Documentary Film The Wrecking Crew:

    https://www.facebook.com/WreckingCrewFilm/videos/2582311905116548/

    15
    DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / RIP HAL BLAINE — (1929-2019)
    « on: March 11, 2019, 05:03:15 PM »
    HAL BLAINE — Legendary drummer and Wrecking Crew member Hal Blaine has passed away at age 90. He was one of the most popular, and most recorded, drummers of all time. What a legacy, and what a life. This one hits close to home. Hal—along with the great Earl Palmer—played on most of Jan Berry’s sessions for Jan & Dean in the ‘60s. He also served as contractor for Jan’s sessions, and had a role—both speaking and playing—in Jan & Dean’s 1966 television pilot “On the Run.” Hal and Jan were close personal friends who socialized together outside of the studio. Hal was 12 years his senior and very much like an older brother to Jan. Hal was devastated by Jan’s 1966 life-changing automobile accident. He spent a lot of time at Jan’s bedside, and played on all of Jan’s post-accident recordings, beginning with the first “Carnival of Sound” related sessions in 1967. I am grateful that I got a chance to interview Hal. He was always gracious and loved to talk about his time with Jan, and Jan’s influence on his career. Hal called me after receiving a copy of my book The Jan & Dean Record, and I was truly thankful for his enthusiastic support of the project. Thanks for the music, Hal. Rest easy, my friend. You had a long and productive life, and we are all the richer for it. “Here we go . . . Top, fellas!” – Mark A. Moore, Author of The Jan & Dean Record


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