Spinning Blues Into Gold:
The Chess Brothers and the Legendary Chess Records
by Nadine Cohodas
St. Martin’s Press, 358 pp., $25.95
reviewed by Jim Linduff
In a lucid, thoroughly researched chronicle of the lives of Leonard and Phil Chess, Nadine Cohodas provides a better understanding of the independent record business and the music it helped create. Founded in Chicago, Chess Records, with subsidiaries Checker, Argo and Cadet was a major vehicle for blues, R&B and jazz artists and was at the core of the rise of rock and roll, the stuff that changed the music business forever.