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How does a middle-class Afrikaans boytjie from Springs, a rebellious product of Christelik-nasionale Opvoeding, end up in the grubby world of protest punk, slap-bang in the middle of the anti-apartheid struggle?
The '80s in South Africa were a mess, a schmangled clusterf*ck of a decade. For some, it was braaivleis, rugby, sunny skies and Chevrolet. For others, it was a one-eyed bumbling about in a world without signage, desperately looking for the emergency exit. While the black population was becoming increasingly agitated and militant, the white dorps, towns and leafy suburbs of South Africa’s cities were mostly ignorant in their privileged bliss. Whiteys were like the frog in the cooker, not realising that the temperature was on the rise. Soon they would slowly, to their terminal surprise, turn white belly-up amid the froth of bubbles boiling from below. Soon it would be too late to get the hell out.
But in tiny pockets of white rebellion, the country was beginning to hum with resistant energy in Joburg, Cape Town and Durban. The '80s counter-culture and the music it produced was anti-establishment, anti-government, anti-apartheid, but not self-consciously so. While the state saw this strange white subculture as a hive of hedonists and drugged-up nihilists, this anarchic clutter of guitar-wielding, pill-munching, dope-smoking musicians and their followers were in fact a second front in the struggle against apartheid.
In brilliantly tragic and hilarious detail, Between Rock & A Hard Place is the epic memoir of Carsten Rasch’s role in the South African counter-culture Punk and New Wave scene in the late '70s and early '80s. Through his eyes as a musician, promoter and enthusiastic participant, it tells the story of those tumultuous and giddy times with heartfelt irreverence. Veering between lucid moments of desperate innovation and psychotic adventures on the rim of sanity, all the time riding roughshod at delirious speed over the potholes of “culture”, the reader is introduced to half-forgotten heroes, now fast disappearing into the fog of time, and the band of misfits who attempted to disrupt “the system”.
The definitive final word on the world's greatest rock band, Led Zeppelin.
Over ten years after When Giants Walked The Earth, Mick's seminal biography of the band, comes this major and extensively researched revision, which will provide an unflinching look at life inside one of the biggest-selling rock bands of all time, and present the definitive, final word on Led Zeppelin.
They were 'the last great band of the sixties; the first great band of the seventies'; they rose, somewhat unpromisingly, from the ashes of the Yardbirds to become one of the biggest-selling rock bands of all time. Mick Wall, respected rock writer and former confidant of both Page and Plant, unflinchingly tells the story of the band that wrote the rulebook for on-the-road excess - and eventually paid the price for it, with disaster, drug addiction and death.
When Giants Walked The Earth reveals for the first time the true extent of band leader Jimmy Page's longstanding interest in the occult, and goes behind the scenes to expose the truth behind their much-hyped yet spectacularly contrived comeback at London's O2 arena in 2007, and how Jimmy Page plans to bring the band back permanently - if only his former protege, now part-time nemesis, Robert Plant will allow him to. Wall also recounts, in a series of flashbacks, the life stories of the five individuals that made the dream of Led Zeppelin into an even more incredible and hard-to-swallow reality: Page, Plant, John Paul Jones, John Bonham, and their infamous manager, Peter Grant.
With a career spanning over 40 years, Marah Louw is counted among South Africa’s musical and entertainment industry royalty and has a powerful and memorable story to tell. This book is the reader’s front-row ticket to the joys, sadness, triumphs and setbacks that have been part of this legend’s life. Even though she is a celebrity, her story aims to show that stars, no matter how bright, are human too. It also delves into her family secrets and her search for truth.
As one of South Africa’s most iconic entertainers, Marah has had an illustrious career. She performed at the Mandela Concert at London’s Wembley Stadium and she sang at the Newsmaker of the Year Awards, presented to Nelson Mandela and FW de Klerk, and in honour of the late Chris Hani. She appeared with Nelson Mandela during his visit to Glasgow in 1993 and sang at George Square and The Royal Concert Hall. In 1994, she sang at the inauguration of President Nelson Mandela and the Freedom Day Celebrations at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.
In 2001, Marah produced the successful musical concert Surf, which featured top South African artists including Hugh Masekela. Marah translated the music of The Lion King into Zulu for the Walt Disney Corporation and performed the theme song Circle of Life in Zulu. She was also an Idols judge from 2003 until 2010.
She had a lead role on the SABC2 television soap opera Muvhango and has acted in numerous musicals, stage plays and feature films. She is currently acting in the Mzansi Magic telenovela The Queen.
As one of the most celebrated musicians of our time, Alicia Keys has enraptured the nation with her heartfelt lyrics, extraordinary vocal range, and soul-stirring piano compositions. Yet away from the spotlight, Alicia has grappled with private heartache over the challenging and complex relationship with her father, the people-pleasing nature that characterized her early career, the loss of privacy surrounding her romantic relationships, and the oppressive expectations of female perfection.
Since her rise to fame, Alicia’s public persona has belied a deep personal truth: she has spent years not fully recognizing or honoring her own worth. After withholding parts of herself for so long, she is at last exploring the questions that live at the heart of her story: Who am I, really? And once I discover that truth, how can I become brave enough to embrace it?
More Myself is part autobiography, part narrative documentary. Alicia’s journey is revealed not only through her own candid recounting, but also through vivid recollections from those who have walked alongside her. The result is a 360-degree perspective on Alicia’s path: from her girlhood in Hell’s Kitchen and Harlem, to the process of self-discovery she’s still navigating.
In More Myself, Alicia shares her quest for truth: about herself, her past, and her shift from sacrificing her spirit to celebrating her worth. With the raw honesty that epitomizes Alicia’s artistry, More Myself is at once a riveting account and a clarion call to readers: to define themselves in a world that rarely encourages a true and unique identity.
Unfaithful Music & Disappearing Ink is the long-awaited memoir from Elvis Costello, one of rock and roll's most iconic stars.
Born Declan Patrick MacManus, Elvis Costello was raised in London and Liverpool, grandson of a trumpet player on the White Star Line and son of a jazz musician who became a successful radio dance band vocalist. Costello went into the family business and had taken the popular music world by storm before he was twenty-four. Costello continues to add to one of the most intriguing and extensive songbooks of the day. His performances have taken him from a cardboard guitar in his front room to fronting a rock and roll band on your television screen and performing in the world's greatest concert halls in a wild variety of company.
Unfaithful Music & Disappearing Ink describes how Costello's career has somehow endured for almost four decades through a combination of dumb luck and animal cunning, even managing the occasional absurd episode of pop stardom. This memoir, written with the same inimitable touch as his lyrics, and including dozens of images from his personal archive, offers his unique view of his unlikely and sometimes comical rise to international success, with diversions through the previously undocumented emotional foundations of some of his best known songs and the hits of tomorrow. The book contains many stories and observations about his renowned co-writers and co-conspirators, though Costello also pauses along the way for considerations on the less appealing side of infamy.
Unfaithful Music & Disappearing Ink is destined to be a classic, idiosyncratic memoir of a singular man.
Born in 1948 into a family of ministers in Kingston, Jamaica, the statuesque and strikingly beautiful Grace Jones lived with her family in Syracuse, NY, before launching a career as a model in New York City. Gaining fame as the cover girl for such publications as Vogue and Elle, Jones's flamboyant look proved to be a hit on the New York City nightclub circuit and she became a darling of the disco scene, which led to a recording contract and a substantial following among gay men. With her sexually charged, outrageous live shows, Grace soon earned the title of 'Queen of the Gay Discos.' When she moved to Paris in 1970, the French fashion scene embraced her unusual, androgynous looks and, in addition to cover work, she dominated the runways of designers like Yves St. Laurent and befriended the likes of Giorgio Armani and Karl Lagerfeld.
While there, she shared an apartment with Jerry Hall and Jessica Lange and became artist Jean-Paul Goude's muse - he also fathered her son Paulo. (Grace was married twice - to a producer and a bodyguard - and she dated Swedish actor Dolph Lundgren for four years.) But with the dawn of the '80s came a massive anti-disco movement across the U.S., leading to Grace Jones focusing on more new wave and experimental-based work, putting her 21/2 octave voice to good use. She is as known for her unique look as she is for her music and has influenced the likes of Lady Gaga, Rihanna and Annie Lennox.
In the book, Grace takes us on a journey from her religious upbringing in Jamaica to her heyday in Paris and New York in the 70s and 80s, all the way to present-day London, where she is working on a new album.
Lady Gaga is a once-in-a-decade artist, and the rare instant celebrity whose appearance can become a cultural event. No other music star of the last decade combines the talents Lady Gaga possesses: she’s a genuine singer, composer, songwriter, designer, and performance artist, who uses technology and social media to shape her art and career. In the space of fifteen months, she has become a demographic-smashing pop icon with global reach and impact.
Not since Madonna’s breakout success in the mid-eighties has the world witnessed the advent of a pop-culture provocateur who mixes high-and-low culture, the avant-garde with the accessible, “downtown” authenticity with the sheen of glamorous artifice. She has quickly formed a symbiotic relationship with her rabid fan base who have taken to dressing as she does, imitating her hair and make-up in tribute. Gaga, too, is a cultural shape-shifter, allowing her fans to project their needs, wants, confusions, and desires onto her.
This is a must-read for Gaga fans, who, devoted as they are, know next to nothing about who she is and how she got that way, as well as for anyone who has heard Lady Gaga on television and the radio and is curious about America’s latest over-the-top cultural success story.
Let Love Rule is a work of deep reflection as Lenny Kravitz looks back at his life with candor, self-scrutiny, and humour.
'My life is all about opposites,' he writes. 'Black and white. Jewish and Christian. The Jackson 5 and Led Zeppelin. I accepted my Gemini soul. I owned it. I adored it. Yins and yangs mingled in various parts of my heart and mind, giving me balance and fueling my curiosity and comfort.'
Let Love Rule covers a vast canvas stretching from Manhattan's Upper East Side, Brooklyn's Bedford-Stuyvesant, Los Angeles's Baldwin Hills, Beverly Hills, and finally to France, England and Germany. It's the story of a wildly creative kid who, despite tough struggles at school and extreme tension at home, finds salvation in music. We see him grow as a musician and ultimately a master songwriter, producer, and performer. We also see Lenny's spiritual growth-and the powerful way in which spirit informs his music. The cast of characters surrounding Lenny is extraordinary: his father, Sy, a high-powered news executive; his mother, Roxie Roker, a television star; and Lisa Bonet, the young actress who becomes his muse.
The central character, of course, is Lenny, who, despite his great aspirational energy, turns down record deal after record deal until he finds his true voice. The creation of that voice, the same voice that is able to declare 'Let Love Rule' to an international audience, is the very heart of this story.
'Whether recording, performing, or writing a book,' says Lenny, 'my art is about listening to the inspiration inside and then sharing it with people. Art must bring the world closer together.'
Rihanna invites you into her world with this stunning visual autobiography.
From her Barbados childhood to her worldwide tours, from iconic fashion moments to private time with friends and family, the book showcases intimate photographs of her life as an artist, performer, designer, and entrepreneur. Many of these images have never before been published.
This large-format book is 504 pages with 1,050 color images on 3 paper stocks and 7 single- and double-page gatefolds, 9 bound-in booklets, 1 tip-in sheet, and a double-sided, removable poster.
If any band deserves to have homage paid to them with a lavish, limited edition photographic book, look no further than Thin Lizzy. With their origins going back to the late sixties, by 1971 with the first album release, Lizzy's journey really began. Incredibly no one has published a visual biography before, but now that has been rectified. Drawing on several thousand images and items of memorabilia this large format 240-page book is a treasure trove for Thin Lizzy devotees - crammed full of live and off-stage shots that portray the band's journey through the decades. It also includes loads of super cool memorabilia including backstage passes, gig posters, media adverts and much more, all reproduced on high quality art paper. This is one future collector's item that every self-respecting Lizzy fan will want to own. Rounding it off, Thin Lizzy: A Visual Biography is topped and tailed with 20,000 words by Lizzy biographer and world-renowned rock author Martin Popoff. This lavish book will prove to be a valuable addition to any fan's collection.
The spectacular new novel from the bestselling author of CLOUD ATLAS and THE BONE CLOCKS, 'one of the most brilliantly inventive writers of this, or any country' (Independent).
Utopia Avenue might be the most curious British band you've never heard of. Emerging from London's psychedelic scene in 1967, folksinger Elf Holloway, blues bassist Dean Moss, guitar virtuoso Jasper de Zoet and jazz drummer Griff Griffin together created a unique sound, with lyrics that captured their turbulent lives and times. The band produced only two albums in two years, yet their musical legacy lives on.
This is the story of the band's brief, blazing journey from Soho clubs and draughty ballrooms to the promised land of America, just when the Summer of Love was receding into something much darker - a multi-faceted tale of dreams, drugs, love, sexuality, madness and grief; of stardom's wobbly ladder and fame's Faustian pact; and of the collision between youthful idealism and jaded reality as the Sixties drew to a close. Above all, this bewitching novel celebrates the power of music to connect across divides, define an era and thrill the soul.
David Mitchell's seven novels include Cloud Atlas and The Bone Clocks. He has been shortlisted twice for the Booker Prize and lives in Ireland.
In his first and only official autobiography, music icon Elton John reveals the truth about his extraordinary life, which is also the subject of the film Rocketman. The result is Me - the joyously funny, honest and moving story of the most enduringly successful singer/songwriter of all time.
Christened Reginald Dwight, he was a shy boy with Buddy Holly glasses who grew up in the London suburb of Pinner and dreamed of becoming a pop star. By the age of twenty-three, he was on his first tour of America, facing an astonished audience in his tight silver hotpants, bare legs and a T-shirt with ROCK AND ROLL emblazoned across it in sequins. Elton John had arrived and the music world would never be the same again.
His life has been full of drama, from the early rejection of his work with song-writing partner Bernie Taupin to spinning out of control as a chart-topping superstar; from half-heartedly trying to drown himself in his LA swimming pool to disco-dancing with the Queen; from friendships with John Lennon, Freddie Mercury and George Michael to setting up his AIDS Foundation. All the while, Elton was hiding a drug addiction that would grip him for over a decade.
In Me, Elton also writes powerfully about getting clean and changing his life, about finding love with David Furnish and becoming a father. In a voice that is warm, humble and open, this is Elton on his music and his relationships, his passions and his mistakes. This is a story that will stay with you, by a living legend.
Discover everything you need to know about the UK rapper and multi award-winning icon, Stormzy, in one amazing book! From his viral freestyles that have garnered millions of views to his award-winning albums - including a track that earned him the first UK number #1 song of the decade! - Stormzy continues to take the world by storm and is fast becoming a global sensation. Packed with fantastic facts, top tips and inside info, this is the perfect book to find out more about the grime sensation.
Who among us has not experienced hearing a song that moved us deeply, that spoke to us in a truly spiritual way? Millions of fans around the world have found that inspiration in the music of U2, arguably the biggest band in the world today. This engaging and informative book examines the spirituality that drives U2, a band whose influence has spread far beyond music and whose songs encourage listeners to put their faith into action for the sake of the poor and marginalized.
In September 1998, a completely unknown band from London performed in the corner of a cafe in Manchester to an audience of fewer than ten people. One of these people was Debs Wild, a record company talent scout who immediately knew she'd seen the future. To celebrate the band's twentieth anniversary, Debs Wild - the discoverer of Coldplay - and Malcolm Croft look back on the band's phenomenal rise to glory. Life In Technicolor: A Celebration of Coldplay charts the band's extraordinary history from the very first rehearsal right through to the conclusion of their record-breaking A Head Full of Dreams Tour. With a unique insider's perspective and never-before-seen photos, this book will delight Coldplay's legions of fans across the globe.
Jimmy was a down-at-heel guitarist in New York, relying on his latest lovers to support him while he tried to emulate his hero Bob Dylan. A black guy playing white rock music, he wanted to be all things to all people. But when Jimmy arrived in England and became Jimi, the cream of swinging London fell under his spell. It wasn't that Jimi could play with his teeth, play with his guitar behind his back. It was that he could really play. Journeying through the purple haze of idealism and paranoia of the sixties, Jimi Hendrix was the man who made Eric Clapton consider quitting, to whom Bob Dylan deferred on his own song 'All Along the Watchtower', who forced Miles Davis to reconsider his buttoned-down ways - and whose 'Star Spangled Banner' defined Woodstock. And when his star, which had burned so brightly, was extinguished far too young, his legend lived on in the music - and the intrigue surrounding his death. Eschewing the traditional rock-biography format, Two Riders Were Approaching is a fittingly psychedelic and kaleidoscopic exploration of the life and death of Jimi Hendrix - and a journey into the dark heart of the sixties. While the groupies lined up, the drugs got increasingly heavy and the dream of the sixties burned in the fire and blood of the Vietnam War, the assassination of Martin Luther King and the election of President Richard Nixon. Acclaimed writer Mick Wall, author of When Giants Walked the Earth, has drawn upon his own interviews and extensive research to produce an inimitable, novelistic telling of this tale - the definitive portrait of the Guitar God at whose altar other guitar gods worship. Jimi Hendrix's is a story that has been told many times before - but never quite like this.
This new tome by the hugely prolific Canadian author Martin Popoff is a detailed re-write and expanded edition of his 2005 publication English Castle Magic. In fact the book is 50% bigger, a whopping 120,000 words and 318 pages including two swell colour photo sections. Sensitive To Light is without doubt the most comprehensive Rainbow biography to date and is based around multiple interviews the author has conducted with most of the key band members over many years including Ritchie Blackmore, as well as Roger Glover, Tony Carey, Graham Bonnet and Joe Lynn Turner, along with those who are sadly no longer with us, namely Cozy Powell Ronnie James Dio, Jimmy Bain and Craig Gruber. Loads more research has also gone into this new publication which is brought bang up to date with the Ronnie Romero era live shows and new songs, following Blackmore's decision to rejuvenate Rainbow in 2016, almost twenty years on from the last incarnation that had concluded in 1997. From the raw and fiery Dio years, through the criminally under-rated Down to Earth album, the smooth crooning Joe Lynn Turner era and into one final somewhat forgotten record fronted by Doogie White, it's all examined here, track by track, fascinating tale by trick. Ritchie Blackmore and his reputation is legion. But is it warranted? This is the book you should read to find out why as we look at the man's career as reigning lord over the constantly evolving consortium of monster talents known as Rainbow.
Dié boek is rock ’n roll in die binnewêreld van die legendariese liedjieboer, Anton Goosen. Hanlie Retief vertel Goosen se buitengewone lewensverhaal – van sy grootwordjare in die Vrystaat, die Musiek-en-Liriek-era, sensuur, hoogtepunte en teleurstellings . . . tot waar die vader van Afrikaanse Rock 'n terugblik gee op sy merkwaardige lewe.
Focusing on the boyfriends, husbands, exes, heroes, celebrities, fathers, sons, complete strangers, and even bandmates of songwriters, this handbook unveils who sparked 50 of rock's greatest songs. Answering burning questions such as "Who was Dolly Parton referring to when she sang "I Will Always Love You"?" and "When Elton John's songwriting partner Bernie Taupin had him proclaim "The Bitch Is Back," did he realize that he was singing about himself?," this trivia collection is a music buff's dream. It explains how each boy or man inspired the song written about him, when the song was released, and the impact it had on the charts, the performer, and the subject himself. Accompanying mini biographies bring readers up-to-date on how the songs affected the men and their present whereabouts while sidebars contain trivia on the performers and recording history.
Billie Eilish is the most talked-about teen on the planet! With a number one debut album, a sold-out tour and a growing Instagram following, Billie is taking the world by storm. Now learn all about the modern music sensation in this ultimate guide. With fun facts about her music, life, fashion, activism and favourite things, this is a must-have purchase for fans. Plus pictures, stats and all the latest gossip!
This informative work tells the story of John Lennon, George Harrison, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr from the band's formative days in Hamburg to the split in 1970. General Editor Brian Southall, a former Press Officer at EMI, has gathered a team of experts - including former Apple Records CEO Tony Bramwell, singer Steve Harley, Sir Tim Rice and producer Chris Thomas - to write about each of the band's record releases, from the simple, bouncy Please Please Me to the heavyweight double album Let It Be. Contributors include: * Tony Bramwell: Childhood friend of the Beatles who became CEO of Apple Records. * Ray Connolly: A British writer who was very close to the Beatles. * Tristan Fry: A drummer and percussionist, Fry played on Abbey Road. * Per Gessle: Singer/songwriter, lead singer of Swedish band Gyllene Tider and half of Roxette. * Graham Gouldman: English singer, songwriter and musician. * Steve Harley: English singer/songwriter who was frontman of Cockney Rebel. * Gered Mankowitz: High profile photographer of many famous musicians. * Diederik Nomden and Bart Van Poppel: Founders and performers in the band The Analogues. * Sir Tim Rice: English author and lyricist. * Paul Sexton: Journalist and broadcaster. * Tom Robinson: English singer/songwriter and presenter. * Chris Thomas: Co-producer of The White Album and Abbey Road. * Ken Townsend MBE: Sound engineer who worked at Abbey Road Studios. * Johnnie Walker MBE: A hugely popular and influential radio DJ. * Kenneth Womack: Professor of English and Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at Monmouth University, N.J.
Two acclaimed albums and an upcoming US tour - Joy Division had the world at their feet. Then, on the eve of that tour and the beginning of what would surely have been an international success story, the band's troubled lead singer, Ian Curtis, killed himself. 'We didn't really think about it afterwards. It just sort of happened. One day we were Joy Division, then our lead singer killed himself and the next time we got together, we were a new band...'Peter Hook That band was New Order.Their distinctive sound - a fusion of post-punk and ground-breaking electronica - paved the way for the dance music explosion of the '80s and earned them the reputation as one of the most influential bands of their generation. Despite their success, the band has always been a collision the visionary and the volatile, and relationships have often been fraught with tensions. Peter Hook has written a no-holds-barred, comprehensive account of the band's entire history, packed with outrageous anecdotes and including every set list and tour itinerary and interspersed with 'geek facts' of every piece of electronic equipment used to forge the sound that changed the direction of popular music.
A GUARDIAN AND INDEPENDENT BEST MUSIC BOOK OF THE YEAR 'At last an expert classicist gets to grips with Bob Dylan' Mary Beard 'Thomas's elegant, charming book offers something for everyone - not just the super-fans' Independent When the Nobel Prize for Literature was awarded to Bob Dylan, the literary world was up in arms. How could the world's most prestigious book prize be awarded to a famously cantankerous singer-songwriter in his Seventies, who wouldn't even deign to make an acceptance speech? In Why Dylan Matters, Harvard Professor Richard F. Thomas answers that question with magisterial erudition. A world expert on Classical poetry, Thomas was initially ridiculed by his colleagues for teaching a course on Bob Dylan alongside his traditional seminars on Homer, Virgil and Ovid. Dylan's Nobel prize win brought him vindication. This witty, personal volume is a distillation of Thomas's famous course, and makes a compelling case for moving Dylan out of the rock n' roll Hall of Fame and into the pantheon of Classical poets. You'll never think about Bob Dylan in the same way again.
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