Mystery Train: Images of America in Rock 'n' Roll Music Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What did Sly Stone call his band?

2. What is Sly Stone's given name?

3. Marcus believes that "There's a Riot Goin' On" is an example of what?

4. According to Marcus in "Sly Stone," what is pop culture by definition?

5. The Riot album reveals what image that Sly had for himself?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why did Marcus entitle a section "Mystery Train" in "Elvis"? Why is this also the title of the book?

2. According to Marcus in "Randy Newman" what is a shared culture? Why is the shared culture important?

3. According to Marcus in "Elvis," what are Elvis Presley's roots?

4. According to Marcus in "Sly Stone," how does the music produced by Sly and the Family Stone resemble freedom?

5. Describe Randy Newman's style; what does he sound like? What influences are in the music?

6. According to Marcus in "Sly Stone," why did Sly Stone create the album Riot ?

7. In "Randy Newman," does Randy Newman care if he is popular or not?

8. According to Marcus in "Elvis," what racial issues exist with Elvis' music?

9. Compare and contrast Sly and Staggerlee as presented in "Sly Stone: The Myth of Staggerlee in the sections: Introduction and "Sly Stone." How are they similar? How are they different?

10. Why does Marcus compare the Fresh album by Sly to "Nietzsche's belief that he who gazes into the abyss will find the abyss looking back; that he who looks too long at monsters may well become one" (90)?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Greil Marcus discusses The Band, Sly Stone, Randy Newman, and Elvis as the inheritors of Harmonica Frank's and Robert Johnson's music. In an essay identify how Harmonica Frank and Robert Johnson are ancestors.

Essay Topic 2

The theme of community recurs throughout Mystery Train. In an essay, explore the reasons why this theme would pervade rock 'n' roll music. Use at least two artists and their music as examples.

Essay Topic 3

Religion or the lack of religion pervades the music of most of the artists in Mystery Train. Identify what religious images are found in songs by the Band and/or Elvis Presley. What do the images mean? Are they being used literally or metaphorically? For what purpose.

(see the answer keys)

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