Author Topic: The What Are You Reading Thread  (Read 136821 times)

greenstreet

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Re: The What Are You Reading Thread
« Reply #530 on: January 11, 2019, 07:15:33 PM »
If you have an interest for black popular music (and I guess we all have), do yourself a favour and get this book. It's the best book about blues (not just Johnson) I've read so far (and I've read quite a few)


Ady C

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Re: The What Are You Reading Thread
« Reply #531 on: January 16, 2019, 05:32:35 PM »
At The Birth Of Bowie - Phil Lancaster.
Phil Lancaster was the drummer in the Lower Third, a band which Davie Jones / David Bowie fronted between May 65 to January 66.  I was sold on the blurb and was really looking forward to reading it.  Sadly there's not a great deal of insight into this period of Bowie's life.  Lancaster didn't keep a diary at the time so it's difficult to escape the conclusion that this memoir isn't coloured by rose tinted glasses.  This also makes for some frustratingly vague, half remembered reminisces which don't seem to have much point at times.  What we do learn is that Dave liked a spliff ("his first forays into drug taking"); In '65 he was using the cut up technique to create lyrics ("Phil was there as the singer's musical stripes began to show"); Dave liked men and women ("the band's discovery of his bisexuality in shocking circumstances"), but doesn't read as such a shocking discovery.  The author also has a tendency to begin a warts and all anecdote to abruptly cut it short with "but that's between me and x and I'll never reveal that secret upon the pain of death" type statement so, why bother putting it in?  He also, and this really grates with me, refers to himself as yours truly:  just use a pronoun instead! It reads much better.
So, it's an okay book but perhaps one for the Bowie completist.

 
And will you shorten the sleeves, love? I'm not a gorilla.

greenstreet

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Re: The What Are You Reading Thread
« Reply #532 on: January 16, 2019, 06:23:23 PM »
At The Birth Of Bowie - Phil Lancaster.
Phil Lancaster was the drummer in the Lower Third, a band which Davie Jones / David Bowie fronted between May 65 to January 66.  I was sold on the blurb and was really looking forward to reading it.  Sadly there's not a great deal of insight into this period of Bowie's life.  Lancaster didn't keep a diary at the time so it's difficult to escape the conclusion that this memoir isn't coloured by rose tinted glasses.  This also makes for some frustratingly vague, half remembered reminisces which don't seem to have much point at times.  What we do learn is that Dave liked a spliff ("his first forays into drug taking"); In '65 he was using the cut up technique to create lyrics ("Phil was there as the singer's musical stripes began to show"); Dave liked men and women ("the band's discovery of his bisexuality in shocking circumstances"), but doesn't read as such a shocking discovery.  The author also has a tendency to begin a warts and all anecdote to abruptly cut it short with "but that's between me and x and I'll never reveal that secret upon the pain of death" type statement so, why bother putting it in?  He also, and this really grates with me, refers to himself as yours truly:  just use a pronoun instead! It reads much better.
So, it's an okay book but perhaps one for the Bowie completist.

 

It looks like those people who write a whole "insider" book about the Beatles because they were the nephew/brother-in-law/cousin of the janitor in McCartney's building when he moved to London. I hadn't high hopes in the Bowie's book anyway, but after Ady's review I'll definitely pass on it.