Autumn 2021 sees the publication of our new book about Shaun Ryder. This authorised biography tells Shaun’s story in the words of fans, friends and collaborators and features an exclusive interview with the man himself.
Packed with memorabilia, previously unseen photos and memories from over 400 fans, this is the Happy Mondays and Black Grape story as it’s never been told before, with Shaun William Ryder at its heart.
Featuring contributions from Peter Hook, Johnny Marr, Paul Oakenfold, Alan McGee, Clint Boon, Keith Lemon, Youth, Anne Savage, Steve Osborne, Don Letts, Mickey Avalon, Phil Saxe, Danny Saber, Mike Pickering, Howie B, John Robb, Nigel Pivaro, Jon Ronson, Shed Seven and Yvette Livesey (and with more to come), the book is packed with tales that will have you reaching for your copy of ‘Step On’ and pulling on your flares as you head back to the heady days of Madchester.
To get on our mailing list for the book, click here.
We are publishing a book about Harry Nilsson later this year. It will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the release of ‘Without You’ and Nilsson Schmilsson and include memories and stories of this unique singer-songwriter’s entire career, by fans and musicians.
Born in Bedford–Stuyvesant, Brooklyn in 1941, his paternal great-grandparents were Swedish circus performers and dancers, especially known for their “aerial ballet” (which is the title of one of Nilsson’s albums). He earned Grammy Awards for two of his recordings; Best Contemporary Vocal Performance, Male in 1970 for ‘Everybody’s Talkin” and Best Pop Vocal Performance, Male in 1973 for ‘Without You’.
So if you have a favourite Harry Nilsson song or a special memory of the man and would like to be involved in the project, please email the authors David Roberts and Neil Watson at [email protected]
Three years after losing the genius that was Mark E. Smith, and following a wretched year where we’ve all missed live music, a new book project is underway celebrating The Fall, charting the band’s amazing four-decade journey from late ‘70s Prestwich punk roots through recollections from fans, ex-members and others who played a part in their incredible story. But we need your help.
Do you have a tale to tell or memory to impart related to the band’s amazing sonic journey that you’d like to share? The new publication will concentrate on – but not be exclusive to – the period from 1981’s Slates to 1996’s The Light User Syndrome, with Brix Smith curating the project, adding insight into her time with the band and related offshoot outfits.
‘Remember …’ the first time you heard John Peel play ‘Rowche Rumble’ or ‘Totally Wired’? Or maybe ‘Kicker Conspiracy’, ‘Cruiser’s Creek’, or ‘Telephone Thing’ turned your head to The Fall. ‘Remember …’ how you sat transfixed watching that spell-binding national TV debut on The Tube in late ’83, witnessed June ‘85’s Clitheroe Castle headliner, or Manchester’s Cities in the Park in August ’91?
Perhaps you go further back, the touch-paper lit in June ‘77 when The Fall supported Joy Division prototype Warsaw at The Squat, Manchester, or Buzzcocks and Purple Hearts at North East London Poly. Alternatively, it could have been one of several side-projects, an Adult Net, Blue Orchids, Creepers, Extricated or Imperial Wax show inspiring you to head back through the catalogue.
We look forward to hearing from you, via [email protected]
We are making a book about Badly Drawn Boy and want your stories! This book will tell the Badly Drawn Boy story in the words of fans. We want to hear from anyone who has a story to tell.
What made you a fan? Where did you first discover his songs, was it on the radio or a TV performance? Did you walk down the aisle to The Shining? Where have you seen him live? Who did you go with? Do you have tickets, lanyards, photos you could share? Every memory, however slight, will help to paint a picture for this new book which will be published later this year.
If you would like to be a part of this please send your story to: [email protected]
Deacon Blue are proud to announce the band’s first official book, To Be Here Someday, in conjunction with This Day in Music Books.
The remarkable story of George Harrison’s prototype ‘mad’ guitar and the search for Jimi Hendrix’s and Frank Zappa’s.
“Paul has done an amazing bit of detective work for Finding Fretless, it would put Poirot to shame.” Fiona Bruce – BBC Antiques Roadshow.
“This is an incredibly rare Beatles guitar with an enviable history, which turns out to be one of the most valuable items ever seen … valued at £300,000 – £400,000 by Jon Baddeley”.
Finding Fretless tells the remarkable tale of the discovery and rich history of an invaluable late-1960s fretless electric guitar, one fondly remembered by George Harrison as the ‘Mad’ guitar.
The prototype fretless model was gifted to the Beatles legend by Hollywood session player and music shop owner Al Casey, whose wife Maxine took it to Blue Jay Way in the Hollywood Hills of Los Angeles while Harrison was staying there in 1967.
Returning to the UK with his new acquisition, it was used by Harrison and John Lennon on sessions for ‘Happiness is a Warm Gun’ and ‘Helter Skelter’ as the legendary Liverpool outfit recorded classic 1968 double-album The Beatles, aka The White Album.
Guitar experts and aficionados were previously unaware of the prototype’s important part in Beatles mythology, its history a mystery until 2019, after UK session guitarist Ray Russell asked, ‘Who knows anything about this guitar George Harrison gave me in 1985?’.
Finding Fretless sees author Paul Brett amend the history books, piecing together the jigsaw to tell the full story of the prototype Bartell alongside that of one of the forgotten founding fathers of the electric guitar, master luthier Paul Barth.
Within, Brett’s extensive research is supported by leading academics and established authors and personal memories of top session players who worked with the likes of Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley and The Beach Boys, Finding Fretless including forewords from two highly-regarded guitarists intrinsically linked to the tale – London session player, producer and composer Ray Russell, and American producer, sideman and session player Richard Bennett.
In a compelling story, Brett also shines light on the incredible history of Bartell and a seminal period in California that influenced musicians on both sides of the Atlantic.
Finding Fretless also brings in the guitar’s associations with Charles Manson’s infamous murderous cult, a million-dollar lawsuit, fire, frying pans, drunken fistfights, corporate shenanigans, Elvis, The Wrecking Crew, and much more.
And those interviewed include descendants of Bartell company presidents and surviving employees, Brett also revealing previously-untold memories of some of the most influential creators in the development of the electric guitar, including Barth, Beauchamp, Rickenbacker, Fender, and the Dopyera brothers.
Price £24.99 ($34.99) Softback
Publication date: 8 July 2021