October 9, is 'Super Thursday', the biggest sales day of the year for booksellers and publishers, as some of the most eagerly anticipated books of the year hit the shelves. Chances are you'll have seen mention of controversial new biographies from Stephen Fry, Roy Keane and John Cleese, but here are 10 rock music books worth snapping up...or worth putting on your Christmas wish list at least.
JIMMY PAGE BY JIMMY PAGE
Originally published in 2010 in a deluxe, personally signed, limited run, first edition copies of Jimmy Page by Jimmy Page now fetch up to £2000 on eBay. This rather more affordable edition (retailing for £40) is a must-buy for Zeppelin fans. Entirely devoid of gossip or salacious anecdotes, it’s a classy 512 page pictorial history of one man and his world-changing guitar playing.
Out: October 14 on Genesis Publications
ANGER IS AN ENERGY: MY LIFE UNCENSORED
If Anger is An Energy is even half as entertaining as 1994’s Rotten: No Blacks, No Irish, No Dogs it’ll still be one of the rock biographies of the year. Touted as “a lively, rock ‘n’ roll ripping yarn full of opinion and surprises whilst also being a thoughtful and mature look back at one of history’s most extraordinary lives”, as with everything Lydon does, it’s sure to piss off someone.
Out: October 9 on Simon & Schuster
I’M THE MAN
Anthrax’s leader is one of the most eloquent and entertaining rock stars on the circuit, as the success of his recent spoken words tours have proved. Expect insights on the birth of Thrash, the rise and rise of the ‘Big Four’ and Anthrax’s part in the birth of rap-metal. And hopefully an explanation of why Ian spent the entire 1980s being referred to as Scott ‘Not’ Ian.
Out: October 23 on Da Capo
ROCKS: MY LIFE IN AND OUT OF AEROSMITH
Aerosmith’s official autobiography, 1997’s Walk This Way, was a fabulous read, capturing all the excess and decadence of the Boston quintet’s career, so we’re expecting more of the same from their ever candid guitarist. Slash has hailed Rocks as “an insightful and harrowing roller coaster ride through the career of one of rock and roll’s greatest guitarists” and he should probably know about these things.
Out: October 23 on Simon & Schuster
GLEN E. FRIEDMAN: MY RULES
Glen E. Friedman
American photographer Glen E. Friedman has been immersed in punk rock, hip-hop and skate culture since the late 1970s, and his iconic images have graced album sleeves for the likes of Minor Threat, Black Flag, Public Enemy, N.W.A and Ice-T. Friedman’s Fuck You Heroes and Fuck You Too photo books collated some of his best known work, and the heavyweight My Rules (named after his early ‘80s photozine) showcases those prints and many more. A fascinating time capsule of rebellious, world-changing American youth movements.
Out: now on Rizzolo International Publications
SOUND MAN: A LIFE RECORDING HITS WITH THE ROLLING STONES, THE WHO, LED ZEPPELIN, THE EAGLES, ERIC CLAPTON, THE FACES…
If you’ve listened to any music from the 1970s, there’s a very good chance that Glyn Johns had a major part to play in bringing it to your ears. Having worked upon Led Zeppelin’s debut album, the first three Eagles albums, Who’s Next, Eric Clapton’s Slowhand and The Faces A Nod Is As Good As a Wink… to name but a fistful of classic recordings - the English studio wizard has amassed a few stories, and Sound Man promises to be an excellent behind-the-desk memoir of a hugely creative period in rock ‘n’ roll history.
Out: December 4 on Blue Rider Press
DANCING WITH MYSELF
In the new issue of Classic Rock magazine (out today, incidentally) William Michael Albert Broad aka Billy Idol talks with refreshing candour about his life as a punk rocker, MTV hero, womaniser, drug abuser and accidental film star. Dancing With Myself promises 300 pages of such revelations, all delivered with that trademark sneer. And a Rebel Yell, obviously.
Out: now on Simon & Schuster
PRIMUS: OVER THE ELECTRIC GRAPEVINE - INSIGHT INTO PRIMUS AND THE WORLD OF LES CLAYPOOL
Primus with Greg Prato
When rock historians seek to uncover the roots of the Alternative Rock ‘revolution’ of the early ‘90s, the likes of Faith No More, Jane’s Addiction and San Francisco oddballs Primus are often overlooked. Over The Electric Grapevine should help redress this, offering a detailed oral history of Les Claypool’s always entertaining band, with contributions from peers and friends such as Kirk Hammett, Tom Morello, Tom Waits, Chuck D and more.
Out: October 16 on Akashic Books
GIMME INDIE ROCK: 500 ESSENTIAL AMERICAN UNDERGROUND ROCK ALBUMS 1981 – 1996
That ‘Alternative Rock revolution’ we mentioned above? Well, here’s a roadmap for the road to Nirvana. From 100 Flowers to Young Fresh Fellows, via Black Flag, Dwarves, Minor Threat, Pussy Galore, Squirrel Bait and more, Earles’ book is a fascinating journey through the underground, hailing cult heroes and icons alike. Let the over-heated debates begin!
Out: October 9 on Voyageur Press
MOUTH FOR WAR: PANTERA AND BEYOND
Philip H. Anselmo
Now this promises to be one Hell of a saga. Never a man to pull his punches, Phil Anselmo’s autobiography promises to be a compelling and brutally honest read, taking in his time with Pantera, his feud with Dimebag Darrell and the birth and messy growth of the dopesick, incestuous New Orleans metal scene. Save your pennies ‘til the New Year for this one.
Out: January 13, 2015 on Gallery Books