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The most authoritative, intelligent, diligently researched and unpretentious analysis of the British pop scene yet written' Sunday Telegraph Black Vinyl White Powder charts the amazing fifty year history of the British music business in unparalleled scale and detail. As a key player across the decades, Napier-Bell - who discovered Marc Bolan and managed amongst others The Yardbirds and Wham! - uses his wealth of contacts and extraordinary personal experiences to tell the story of an industry that is like no other. Where bad behaviour is not only tolerated but encouraged, where drugs are sometimes as important as talent, where artists are pushed to their physical and mental limits in the name of profit and ego. 'The Greatest Ever Book Written about English Pop-Breathtakingly Brilliant' Julie Burchill 'The cold print equivalent of a sparkling evening with a world-class raconteur.' Charles Shaar Murray, Independent Bitchy, glib, fun and shrewd' Daily Telegraph

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780091880927
ISBN-10: 0091880920
Format: Paperback
(198mm x 126mm x 30mm)
Pages: 480
Imprint: Ebury Press
Publisher: Ebury Publishing
Publish Date: 3-Jan-2002
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Other Editions

Reviews

UK Kirkus Review » This is almost certainly set to be the definitive history of the UK popular music industry, from the 1950s to the beginning of the 21st century. Napier-Bell has impressive credentials for this task: co-writer of the Dusty Springfield hit 'You Dont Have To Say You Love Me', manager of the Yarbirds in the '60s, then Marc Bolan and, in the '80s, Wham! and George Michael. This tome is part autobiography, part social history, and clearly written with a combination of detailed inside knowledge and research. It provides not only an extensive bibliography but also an index of quotations and a 'cast of characters'. Napier-Bells quasi-sociological explanations ('since the Stone Age, drugs and music have gone hand in hand') sometimes make one wonder if he is aware of the gulf between the music industry and the world outside can it really be true that in the '50s Benzedrine was taken by truck drivers throughout the American South? But inevitably it is the inside gossip which is most intriguing: Gerry Marsden subtly altering the words of his songs when playing in Germany, such that German musicians could later be heard singing the amended versions, word for word, in other venues ('All my life Ive been waiting tonight therell be no masturbating'). John Lennon in Greece having left his drugs behind in London: 'What goods the bloody Parthenon without LSD!' The often brilliantly funny, though at times alarming, anecdotes of drugs, violence, money and, inevitably, sex in multifarious permutations often eclipse the music itself. (Kirkus UK)


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Author Biography - Simon Napier-Bell

Simon Napier-Bell was manager of the Yardbirds, Marc Bolan, Japan and Wham! to name but a few. He still manages today. www.simonnapierbell.com

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