Rob Chapman's book is the first authoritative and exhaustively researched biography of Syd Barrett that fully celebrates his life and legacy as a musician, lyricist and artist, and which highlights the influence that he continues to have over contemporary bands and music fans alike.
A new edition as part of the Faber Greatest Hits - books that have taken writing about music in new and exciting directions for the twenty-first century.
No other jazz musician has proved so inspirational and so fascinating as John Coltrane.
In the summer of 1972, during a compulsory stint in the South African military, Stephen 'Sugar' Segerman heard the music that would forever change his life. A decade later, on yet another military base, Craig Bartholomew Strydom heard the same music. It would have a profound effect. Who was this folk singer who resonated with South Africa's youth?
Steven Patrick Morrissey was born in Manchester on May 22nd 1959. Singer-songwriter and co-founder of the Smiths, Morrissey has been a solo artist for twenty-six years, during which time he has had three number 1 albums in England in three different decades. This book deals with his work and life.
By the middle of the 1970s, Bob Dylan's position as the pre-eminent artist of his generation was assured. The 1975 album Blood on the Tracks seemed to prove, finally, that an uncertain age had found its poet. This book tells his story.
A year after Prince's death at the age of 57, acclaimed writer brilliantly anatomizes the star's dramatic career and an aesthetic that at times seemed otherworldly. In thematically structured chapters that blend critical consideration of Prince's art with the author's personal connection to the music.
Think 'Woodstock' and the mind turns to the seminal 1969 festival. But Woodstock itself was over sixty miles away, and already a key location in the rock landscape as a community of brilliant, and freaks dazed and confused by the search for spiritual truth. This is a study of a vital music scene in a revolutionary time and place.
Mike Love is a founding member of the Beach Boys. With their lush vocals and endlessly inventive arrangements, the band forged art from songs about cars, surfing and first love. But beneath the Beach Boys' wholesome appearance lurked darker truths: drugs and dissent, deceit and betrayal. This book tells their story.
Few groups have had a bigger impact than The Smiths and few musicians are as celebrated as Johnny Marr. He is an icon who defined an era and influenced a generation of guitarists. He joined The Pretenders, The The, Modest Mouse and The Cribs and has collaborated with Hans Zimmer. In this book, he tells his own side of the story.
If I had not kissed anyone, or danced with anyone, or had a reason to cry, the music made me feel as if I had gone through all that anyway. This book tells the story of the adventures that music leads us into: getting drunk, falling in love, dying of boredom, cutting our hair, terrifying our parents, wanting to change the world.
How do you make a song a global smash hit that is guaranteed to make $millions? In this book, the author dissects the workings of this machine, travelling the world to reveal its hidden formulas, and interview its geniuses - 'the hitmakers' - at the centre of it all.
Deconstructs Japanese rock music and reveals what happened when East met West after World War Two. This book explores the clash between traditional, conservative Japanese values and the wild rock 'n' roll renegades of the 1960s and 70s, and tells of the seminal artists in Japanese post-war culture.
Looks at the life and music career of prominent soul singer Wilson Pickett, chronicling the performer's rise to stardom and his self-destructive fall into alcohol and drug addiction before ending his career on a high note with a Grammy-nominated album.
Everything in its Right Place identifies the secret to Radiohead's immense commercial and critical success in the band's ability to navigate a sweet spot between expectation and surprise. The author uses tools from musical perception, semiotics, and music theory to demonstrate this reconciliation of extremes, and analyzes musical meaning with lyrics, biographical details, and intertextual relationships.
In the late eighties and early nineties, Moby, then an underground DJ and musician, was scraping out a living in New York City. In a scene popular chiefly among working-class African-Americans and Latinos, Moby - a poor, skinny, white Christian, vegan and teetotaller - looked like he would never make it. This is his memoir.
Brix Smith Start is best known for her work in The Fall at the time when they were perhaps the most powerful and influential anti-authoritarian postpunk band in the world. Brix spent ten years in the band before a violent disintegration led to her exit. This book tells her story that is much more than rock 'n' roll highs and lows.
Features a book of stories, drawings and poems that was first published in 1964 to great critical acclaim and became a phenomenon, selling over 600,000 copies in the UK alone and revealing a hitherto unseen side to author's artistic output and talent.
Talks about Josh Davis's (DJ Shadow) early years in California, the friends and mentors who helped him along the way, his relationship with Mo'Wax and James Lavelle, and the genesis and creation of his masterpiece, "Endtroducing" (released in 1996). This book includes several long conversations with him.
To absorb Rum, Sodomy, and the Lash is to be taken on a wild voyage with a cast of downtrodden revolutionaries. Despite this notion, the epic themes of the Pogues' second full length record have been overlooked by both critics and biographers. This book discusses the record's articulation of what it is to be magnificently downtrodden.
In 1991 Van Morrison said, 'Music is spiritual, the music business isn't'. This book investigates the oppositions and harmonies within the work of Van Morrison, proceeding from this identified starting point. It looks at Morrison as a singer. It also looks at how he uses his voice as an interpretive instrument.
Tells the sensational story of the meteoric rise and rapid decline of the last great rock'n'roll band and the cultural moment they came to define. The critical reputation of England's Dreaming has grown over the past decade and a half, and now it joins the Faber Modern Classics list.
Sandy Denny laid down the marker for folk-rock when she joined Fairport Convention in 1968, but her music went far beyond this during the seventies. This book tells the story of Sandy Denny, one of the greatest British singers of her time and the first female singer-songwriter to produce a substantial and enduring body of original songs.
Idolized by his fans, Ian Curtis left behind a legacy rich in artistic genius. Mesmerizing on stage but introverted and prone to desperate mood swings in his private life, Curtis died by his own hand on 18 May 1980. This book documents how, with a wife, child and impending international fame, Curtis was seduced by the glory of an early grave.
The author was born in Manchester on May 22nd 1959. Singer-songwriter and co-founder of the Smiths (1982-1987), he has been a solo artist for twenty-six years, during which time he has had three number 1 albums in England in three different decades. This book covers his life from his birth until the present day.
Explores the rich heritage of Bowie's productive and inspired decade, and traces the way in which his music reflected and influenced the world around him. This book examines in detail Bowie's audacious creation of an 'alien' rock star, Ziggy Stardust, and his increasingly perilous explorations of the nature of identity and the meaning of fame.
Dave Van Ronk (1936-2002) was one of the founding figures of the 1960s folk revival. This memoir of Greenwich Village in the '60 offers a first-hand account by a major player in the social and musical history of the '50s and '60s. It also features encounters with young stars-to-be like Bob Dylan, Tom Paxton, Phil Ochs, and Joni Mitchell.
Woody Guthrie is the most famous and influential folk music composer and performer in the history of the US. His most popular song, 'This Land is Your Land' has become the country's unofficial national anthem. Here, in a short biography, Cohen introduces Guthrie's life and music to students of American history and culture.
The story of the Rolling Stones is one of the epic rock 'n' roll yarns of our time. Their music defined today's cultural landscape and their history is a source of endless fascination for music fans around the world. This book aims to disentangle the threads of the Rolling Stones story and put Brian Jones firmly in the foreground.
Legendarily reticent, perverse and misleading, Prince is one of the few remaining 80s superstars who still, perhaps, remains unexplained. Now a firm fixture in the pop canon, where such classics as 'Purple Rain', 'Sign o' the Times' and 'Parade' regularly feature in Best Ever Album polls, Prince is still, as he ever was, an enigma.
Undiscovered gem of the UK Beat scene - West London's Eel Pie Hotel - unearthed for rock fans everywhere. Essential reading for anyone interested in the history of music in the UK. With interviews, photographs and contributions from musicians, fans, critics and the original Eel Pie clubbers.