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Skollie, saint, scholar, hippest of hippies, imperfect musician with a perfect imagination, Syd Kitchen was, like all great artists, born to enrich his art and not himself.
Plagued by drugs, alcohol and depression, too much of an outlaw to be embraced by record companies, he frequently sold his furniture to cover production costs of his albums, seduced fans at concerts and music festivals worldwide with his dazzling ‘Afro-Saxon’ mix of folk, jazz, blues and rock interspersed with marvellously irreverent banter, and finally became the subject of several compelling documentaries, one of which - Fool in a Bubble - premiered in New York in 2010.
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.
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.
Phil Collins gained fame as both the drummer and lead singer for Genesis and continues to enjoy worldwide success today.
He’s one of only three recording artists who have sold over 100 million albums both as solo artists and separately as principal members of a band - the other two being Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson. Revered as a drummer, he’s the only performer of distinction to have appeared at both the UK and US original Live Aid concerts, the creator of numerous worldwide hits, and is an Oscar winner for the song ‘You'll Be in My Heart', from the Disney film Tarzan.
Phil Collins' life has also been rich with experience outside of music, starting with his career as a child actor, appearing aged 13 as the Artful Dodger in the stage production of Oliver! through Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Miami Vice and The Band Played On.
In his memoir Phil talks honestly about his three failed marriages, his alcoholism and his ill health but also describes the highs and lows of his career, and what it is like to work with other rock legends from Eric Clapton to Robert Plant.
After years of rumours, Adele's long-awaited third album 25 was finally announced in late 2015, and with it came claims that she was to single-handedly 'save the music industry'. Such is the influence of Adele - a young mother from Tottenham with the most powerful voice in the world. Adele's breathtaking songs have seen her top the charts around the planet, collect millions of admirers and win dozens of top awards. But who is she? Her commendable desire to protect her family and friends from the harsh glare of the media's spotlight has meant that she has become one of the most private superstars on the planet.
Adele: The Biography traces her story from a humble childhood in London through to the phenomenal success of her first two albums, 19 and 21 and the making of her most recent work, 25. Along the way, this unique book uncovers how her troubled private life influenced her heartbreaking tracks and how she gamely overcame a string of obstacles that threatened to derail her career. You will discover the fascinating truth behind all the highs and the lows experienced by this fun, formidable woman, whose songs have become national anthems for the heartbroken.
In this fully updated edition of his internationally-bestselling biography, Chas Newkey-Burden reveals the woman behind the music.
On 11 January 2016, the world was stunned to wake up to the news that David Bowie had died the day before. A genuine icon, he left behind a body of work among the most important in music history. But only a lucky few were privileged to know the man behind that mystique, and know him well. Sean Mayes was one of them.
In 1978, Sean toured the world with David Bowie, in what was one of the most important periods in the artist's history. Travelling first class and performing each night with one of the world's greatest rock stars at the height of his fame was an amazing experience - fortunately, Sean had the foresight to document it. Here, in complete book form, Sean's tour diary is presented; a blow by blow record of how it felt to be part of a real rock circus.
Providing page after page of fascinating insight into life on the road with Bowie, Sean's account is a unique travelogue, a must for any Bowie fan or, indeed, anyone interested in life on a sell-out world tour.
They say there are no second acts in American lives, and third acts are almost unheard of. That's part of what makes Brian Wilson's story so astonishing.
As co-founder member of the Beach Boys in the 1960s, Wilson created some of the most groundbreaking and timeless popular music ever recorded. With intricate harmonies, symphonic structures, and wide-eyed lyrics that explored life's most transcendent joys and deepest sorrows, songs like 'In My Room', 'God Only Knows' and 'Good Vibrations' forever expanded the possibilities of pop songwriting. Derailed in the 1970s by mental illness, drug use, and the shifting fortunes of the band, Wilson came back again and again over the next few decades, surviving and - finally - thriving. Now, for the first time, he weighs in on the sources of his creative inspiration and on his struggles, the exhilarating highs and the debilitating lows.
I Am Brian Wilson reveals as never before the man who fought his way back to stability and creative relevance, who became a mesmerizing live artist, who forced himself to reckon with his own complex legacy and completedSmile, the legendary unfinished Beach Boys record that had become synonymous with both his genius and its destabilization. Today Brian Wilson is older, calmer, filled with perspective and forgiveness. Whether he's talking about his childhood, his bandmates, or his own inner demons, Wilson's story, told in his own voice and in his own way, unforgettably illuminates the man behind the music, working through the turbulence and discord to achieve, at last, a new harmony.
Across six decades, Sir Tom Jones has maintained a vital career in a risky, unstable business notorious for the short lives of its artists. With a drive that comes from nothing but the love for what he does, he breaks through and then wrestles with the vagaries of the music industry, the nature of success and its inevitable consequences.
Having recorded an expansive body of work and performed with fellow artists from across the spectrum and across every popular music genre, from rock, pop and dance to country, blues and soul, the one constant throughout has been his unique musical gifts and unmistakable voice. But how did a boy from a Welsh coal-mining family attain success across the globe? And how has he survived the twists and turns of fame and fortune to not only stay exciting, but actually become more credible and interesting with age?
In this, his first and only autobiography, Tom revisits his past and tells the tale of his journey from wartime Pontypridd to LA and beyond. He reveals the stories behind the ups and downs of his fascinating and remarkable life, from the early heydays to the subsequent fallow years to his later period of artistic renaissance. Raw, honest, funny and powerful, this is a memoir like no other from one of the world's greatest ever singing talents.
Madonna: singer, songwriter, actress, businesswoman, not to mention one of the most renowned cultural icons of the last three decades.
Since her first, eponymous album, over thirty years ago Madonna has sold a remarkable 300 million records worldwide, making her the top-selling female recording artist of all time. Madonna is famous for continuously reinventing both her music and her image. By pushing the boundaries of mainstream popular music with both her lyrical content and the imagery in her music videos she achieved extraordinary popularity.
Michelle Morgan offers a richly illustrated, comprehensive account of the artist's phenomenally successful career shedding new light on her videos, books, tours, fashion, charity work and every other aspect of her life.
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.
Michael Buble is the most successful male artist in the world at the moment. Born in British Columbia to a family of Italian fishermen, music is in the family blood and it was Michael's grandfather first introduced him to the kind of music he would later make his own - Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, Dean Martin and Elvis. Since his debut in 2003, he has sold 25 million albums, won two Grammys and multiple Junos, reached the top 5 in countries around the world as well as numerous number 1s, his concerts have been sell outs and he has cultivated a huge and loyal fanbase. Michael Buble is a music phenomenon and this beautifully designed biography will celebrate his success. Packed with stunning photographs and lavishly designed spreads charting his story - both personal and professional - and his meteoric rise to stardom, this book is a must-have for the millions of Michael Buble fans around the world.
10th anniversary edition with exclusive new content. Set against the frenzied world of heavy metal superstardom, the co-founder of legendary Moetley Crue offers an unflinching and gripping look at his own descent into drug addiction. When Moetley Crue were at the height of their fame, there wasn't a drug Nikki Sixx wouldn't do. He spent days - sometimes alone, sometimes with others addicts, friends and lovers - in a coke- and heroin-fuelled daze. THE HEROIN DIARIES reveals Nikki's personal diary entries alongside commentary from the people who know Nikki best including band mates Tommy, Vince and Mick. The book is a candid look at a nightmare come true: a punishing heroin addiction that brought Nikki to the edge of losing his talent, his career, his family and finally to a near-fatal overdose which left him clinically dead for a few minutes before being revived. Brutally honest, utterly riveting and shockingly moving, THE HEROIN DIARIES follows Nikki during the year he plunged to rock bottom and his courageous decision to pick himself up and start living again.'Harrowing ... required reading' Rolling Stone'Heartbreaking ... The Heroin Diaries presents a new model for the rock bio' The New York Times'A modern-day opera based on his time in hell' New York Post'Addictive reading' Kerrang'Lurid' Harp
`On the stage, Jake Shears is a triumphant explosion of unembarrassed carnality and charm. On the page, he's very much the same. Boys Keep Swinging is one courageous joyride of a memoir. It should be illegal for rock stars to write so beautifully.' - Armistead Maupin `The purpose of my life is to entertain. It's a constant feedback loop.' Before becoming lead singer in the fabulous Scissor Sisters, Jake Shears was Jason Sellards, just a kid with an unfathomable imagination and a love of He-Man dolls. Splitting life between Arizona and the Pacific West Coast, his childhood was marked by school bullies and the terror of the rise and misunderstanding surrounding the AIDS virus. With changes in age and geography Shears gradually found a sense of belonging - first in Seattle, then in the street life and lights of New York City in the late 90s where, with friends and musicians also thirsting for freedom and the stage, he would form Scissor Sisters and go on to sell out venues worldwide. This is a wide-eyed and determined coming-of-age story from a world famous LGBTQ+ icon, but its heartbeat is Shears' friendship with Mary Hanlon, who he met via The Edge, a prehistoric chatroom, when he was 15 and she was 21. For years Shears lived in New York with a landline for which only Mary knew the number. Although long-distance, self-absorption and changing circumstances would take their toll on the friendship, this was the safe-house that sheltered a pair of misfits from the unthinking prejudices of a fearful world, a haven to which both would always return, and for which Shears wrote the song 'Mary'.
Classic Tracks: Led Zeppelin gives an in-depth examination of the stories, events, characters and places that inspired what is easily one of the greatest rock bands of all time. What were 'The Houses of the Holy'? Where was the 'Stairway to Heaven'? Which strange encounters led to such classics as 'Kashmir' and 'Whole Lotta Love'? This book reveals the roots and origins of the songs on all nine of the band's celebrated studio albums, together with all the stories behind material released after Zeppelin's break-up in 1980, including Unledded: No Quarter and the BBC Sessions album.
Shortlisted for the Penderyn Music Book Prize Sticky Fingers is the story of how one man's ego and ambition captured the 1960s youth culture of rock and roll and turned it into a hothouse of fame, power, politics, and riches that would last for fifty years. Drawn from dozens of hours of interviews with Jann Wenner, who granted Joe Hagan exclusive access to his vast personal archive, this biography reveals how Wenner manufactured an unforgettable cultural mythology in story and image every other week for five decades. Hagan captures in stunning detail the extraordi-nary stories behind Rolling Stone, the magazine that reinvented youth culture, and marketed the libertine world of late-sixties San Francisco. He chronicles Wenner's marksmanship as an editor, his instinctive un-derstanding of the zeitgeist, his endless pursuit of fame and power and his capacity for betrayal that would earn him as many enemies as friends. Featuring on-the-record interviews with Mick Jagger, Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Elton John, Keith Richards, Pete Townsend, Yoko Ono, Billy Joel, Tom Wolfe, Cameron Crowe, Lorne Michaels, David Geffen, Dan Aykroyd, Bette Midler, and many others, Hagan describes Wenner with intimacy, nuance, and complexity. Like a real life Clash of the Titans, Sticky Fingers captures the spirit of the age and paints an unforgettable portrait of one of the most signif-icant cultural forces of our time.
Chameleon, entertainer, actor, and iconoclast. It would be difficult to think of a rock star who has had a more varied and influential career than David Bowie and the list of bands and musicians who have been influenced by Bowie reads like an A to Z of popular music. But Bowie himself has skillfully and consistently maintained his credibility as the most innovative performer of his generation by staying one jump ahead of the many who seek to imitate him. Classic Tracks: David Bowie explores this icon in detail. While his many artistic incarnations are known, few know David Bowie the man, and as this book will show, through its exploration of his diverse body of work, the only real constant factors in his career are his incredible voice, his imagination and his supreme talent for artistic reincarnation. Every track of each of his albums is examined in great detail, giving you an insight to both the music, and the enigmatic man who created it.
BOOK OF THE YEAR 2017 - MOJO MAGAZINE & UNCUT MAGAZINE "In early '77 I asked Grant if he'd form a band with me. `No,' was his blunt reply." Grant McLennan didn't want to be in a band. He couldn't play an instrument; Charlie Chaplin was his hero du jour. And yet, when Robert Forster wrote Hemingway, Genet, Chandler and Joyce into his lyrics, McLennan couldn't resist a second invitation to become 80s indie sensation The Go Betweens. The friends would collaborate for three decades, until Grant's premature death in 2006. Beautifully written - like lyrics, like prose - Grant & I is a rock memoir akin to no other. Part `making of', part music industry expose, part buddy-book, this is a delicate and perceptive celebration of creative endeavour. With wit and candour, Robert Forster pays tribute to a band who found huge success in the margins, having friendship at its heart.
"There's only ever been two English rock 'n' roll singers," Ian Dury said, "Johnny Rotten and Billy Fury." Butter adverts have tainted Johnny's status, but Billy's combination of beauty, sex, innocence, talent, charisma and vulnerability has never been matched. The Sound of Fury, his first L.P., is still widely revered as the best British rock'n'roll record ever made. When he first appeared on TV, a generation of teenagers found true love, and his post-rock'n'roll heartbreak ballads were the essential soundtrack to adolescent angst. In 1973, he was brought out of semi-retirement to play Stormy Tempest - to some extent a parody of himself - in the movie That'll Be The Day. The magic rose above the parody. He never knew how not to be magnificent. David and Caroline Stafford guide the reader through Billy's troubled childhood in Liverpool, via gold and silver lame, to his later years as a farming ornithologist, and his comeback cut short by his premature death. Billy Fury was a key figure on that watershed between post-war privations and sixties excess. He knew everybody, auditioned the Beatles to be his backing band, met and outhandsomed Elvis, partied with Keith Moon and hosted acid parties. Yet, throughout the mayhem, he always remained true to himself- diffident and amused. Halfway To Paradise tells the full story with the compassion and affection due to an artist who, decades after his death, still has the power to command admiration and adoration.
In 1994, Brad and Paige Holmes opened a small, live-music venue in the bohemian suburb of Melville in Johannesburg. They called it Bassline, which very soon became synonymous with cigarette smoke, great jazz and nights you wished would never end. They later moved the club to Newtown where it grew in prominence as the ultimate venue for live music, hosting amazing artists like Thandiswa Mazwai, Jimmy Dludlu, Lira, The Soil and Grammy Award-winning group Ladysmith Black Mambazo.
In 2016 word spread like wildfire that everyone’s favourite club was closing its doors forever; this place that held all the promises of a new South Africa, a place where people of all races could come together, share a drink, dance and fall in love was to be no more. But as Bassline starts its new journey with Live @ the Bassline, yet another great story begins with Last Night At The Bassline.
In this book, esteemed music historian Professor David Coplan tells the story of Bassline and the Holmes’s journey in it, thus giving musicians and jazz fans something to hold on to even after its closure. This book is a tangible piece of the magic to take home and savour. And those who were never there will be given a chance to experience this dream.
With more than fifty iconic photographs from Oscar Gutierrez and other great photographers, the book is more than just a memoir. It is a gritty, smoky, passionate slice of time. Bassline will always be a reminder of what it feels like to live the impossible.
In The Most Beautiful, a title inspired by the hit song Prince wrote about their legendary love story, Mayte Garcia for the first time shares the deeply personal story of their relationship and offers a singular perspective on the music icon and their world together: from their unconventional meeting backstage at a concert (and the long-distance romance that followed), to their fairy-tale wedding (and their groundbreaking artistic partnership), to the devastating losses that ultimately dissolved their romantic relationship for good. Throughout it all, they shared a bond more intimate than any other in Prince's life. No one else can tell this story or can provide a deeper, more nuanced portrait of Prince--both the famously private man and the pioneering, beloved artist--than Mayte, his partner during some of the most pivotal personal and professional years of his career. The Most Beautiful is a book that will be returned to for decades, as Prince's music lives on with generations to come.
Mike Love is a founding member, lyricist and vocalist of The Beach Boys, considered to be the most popular American band in history, with 13 Gold Albums, 55 top-100 singles, and four number 1 hits. Love has been the lead singer of the group one of its principal lyricists since its inception in 1961.
In Good Vibrations, Mike Love tells the unique story of his legendary, chaotic, and ultimately triumphant five-decade tenure as the front man of The Beach Boys, from their Californian roots to international fame.
In his graphic biography Nick Cave: Mercy on Me, Reinhard Kleist paints an expressive and enthralling portrait of the musician, novelist, poet and actor. It is, according to Nick Cave himself, "a complex, chilling and completely bizarre journey into Cave World". Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds: An Art Book collects Kleist's moody and expressive portraits of the musician and his band, spanning thirty years of writing, recording and live performance. Kleist also returns us to Nick Cave's imaginative world with comic book reimaginings of "Deanna", "The Good Son" and "Stagger Lee" Filled with visual delights, this record-sized art book is a kaleidoscopic portrait of Nick Cave's wide-ranging career as a storyteller, musician and cultural icon.
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