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Description - The Commitments by Roddy Doyle

Barrytown, Dublin, has something to sing about. The Commitments are spreading the gospel of the soul. Ably managed by Jimmy Rabitte, brilliantly coached by Joel 'The Lips' Fagan, their twin assault on Motown and Barrytown takes them by leaps and bounds from Paris Hall to immortality on vinyl. But can The Commitments live up to their name?

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780749391683
ISBN-10: 0749391685
Format: Paperback
(198mm x 129mm x 8mm)
Pages: 144
Imprint: Vintage
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 21-Mar-1997
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Book Reviews - The Commitments by Roddy Doyle

US Kirkus Review » First published in Britain in 1987, this bracing, funny, honest, and charming first novel tracks the brief existence of The Commitments, a working-class Dublin band bent on bringing soul to the people. Fortunately for Outspan and Derek, who've decided to form And, And!, And, a syntho-pop cover band (as soon as they get the money to buy instruments, anyway), Jimmy Rabbite consents to be their manager. Jimmy's the sharpest industry observer in northern Dublin ("Jimmy had Relax before anyone had heard of Frankie Goes to Hollywood and he'd started slagging them months before anyone realized that they were no good"), and is able to turn the band to soul. Renamed the Commitments, Jimmy adds to the band - among others - the three Commitmentettes; and a pro, Brother Joey "The Lips" Fagan, a balding, motherly horn-player old enough to have fathered the rest of the band. Brother Joey, who's played with everyone from James Brown to the Beatles, takes over the band's musical training to great success, and is soon sampling the nonmusical talents of the Commitmentettes, much to the disgust of his frustrated younger colleagues. After a lot of amusing preparation, the band gains recognition in local pubs and the music press. But Deco, the band's talented but oafish singer, lets success go to his head, and despite an offer to record, friction breaks up the band. We leave Jimmy, Outspan, and Derek as they realize that what Dublin really needs is a country-western band. Brash, human, smoothly executed, and seemingly authentic, full of youth, energy, and good humor, this is a quintessential garage-band romance - and a fine and promising debut. (Kirkus Reviews)

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Author Biography - Roddy Doyle

Roddy Doyle was born in Dublin in 1958. He is the author of nine acclaimed novels, one collection of short stories and Rory & Ita, a memoir about his parents. He won the Booker Prize in 1993 for Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha. His last book, The Dead Republic, was the final volume in the Henry Smart trilogy.

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