Review: A Wailing Of A Town

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A Wailing Of A Town “An Oral History of Early San Pedro Punk and More” 1977-1985
Craig Ibarra

FWY Press
Street: 04.01 

I’ve got to hand it to A Wailing Of A Town for providing the excellent and essential, detailed oral history of San Pedro’s contribution to punk. This book is filled with entertaining and sometimes conflicting accounts from those who were there during the formative years of punk rock like Mike Watt and D. Boon. The book explores the atmosphere of punk and hardcore during the beginning years. However, the main narrative that readers will find here is in the interviews that explore the intimate stories which surround the bands that put San Pedro on the map—most notably The Reactionaries and the Minutemen—as well as looking at the keen relationship the latter had with Black FlagA Wailing of A Town also shines a light on other San Pedro bands like Saccharine Trust and The Plebs, while also looking at record labels like New Alliance Records and New Underground Records. The book also highlights several gigs that are infamous in punk rock history, like that of the legendary Black Flag performance at San Pedro High School in 1981. A Wailing Of A Town is a must have, so waste little time in picking it up. –Nick Kuzmack