I’ve always been a sucker for a book. My reading choices tend to focus on popular entertainment, in fact my consumption of music books outweighs fiction by about 20:1 (although many music biographies are, in fact, works of fiction).
I have, over the last 40 years or so, acquired a large library of music books, many of which I can accommodate at arm’s length, but several dozen have had to go into storage. Today, the sheer volume of music books being published is overwhelming, and I confess a large stack has built up in recent months that I am yet to read, or even dip into (see above).
The main reason that this pile has grown is that I am attempting to write a new book, and I comfort myself with the mantra ‘Can’t read AND write’; every hour spent reading about, say, Jerry Lee Lewis, is an hour less to spend on the forthcoming biography I am researching.
Another dilemma when a desirable book is published is: do I buy the print version, or the more portable electronic equivalent? I personally think if you buy the physical, the publisher should throw in a code for the latter (some do). Books I have recently read on an iPad mini - so easy to carry – are: ‘Yeah Yeah Yeah’ by Bob Stanley; ‘Sound Man’ by Glyn Johns; ‘How Music Got Free’ (*****) by Stephen Witt, and currently ‘Dead Gods: The 27 Club’ by Chris Salewicz.
However, the real point of this essay is to remind myself to set aside some time for two imminent biographies, both of ‘local lads’, and remind you of their publication.
‘Hole In My Pocket - The true legend of Mickey Jupp, the rock and roll genius who refused to be a star’, by Mike Wade, is due to appear in September. Initially, this is being published privately by Wade, with proceeds going to Jupp. How to order: send your enquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org
‘Lee Brilleaux – Rock’n’Roll Gentleman’, by Zoe Howe, is due in October, published by Birlinn http://www.birlinn.co.uk/Lee-Brilleaux.html
To read both of these I will rest from my labours and probably devour each in a single sitting. Mickey and Lee are both fascinating characters of my acquaintance and I’m intrigued to see how their respective lives play out on the printed page.