A review of the best rock biographies with insights and warnings

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All rock and roll stars are happy/unhappy/happy again in their own way. That is assuming they do not end up dead or broke. Who ever said do not meet your heroes, could have added or read their biography. …

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A garage band starting out in the garage needs some content. The Replacements were famous for their give up and play covers shows. Jimi Hendrix took a Dylan lyric and a few chords and took a song to another planet. Leonard Cohen said about Jeff Buckley, it’s his song now…

The Replacements (affectionately known as ‘the Mats’ hereafter) are a band with followers like no other. On one of the Facebook pages, followers actively report on hearing a Mats song randomly on the radio, or during a Netflix show, and immediately make a post of the moment. Like a butterfly…

Five Live 1986 University of Otago

Straitjacket Fits: A Life in Three Gigs

One New Zealand band could burn up a stage like no other — ‘Straitjacket Fits’. Starting in 1986, the time of their early pomp, and into their 1990’s heyday; then the reunion tours of 2005 and 2018, it has been a blast. Here…

Moon Over Wellington (JS Mowat 2020)

An Appointment With The Waterboys and Mr Yeats

The stars aligned, there may have been a crescent moon that night. The Waterboys were in town for the first time in Aotearoa New Zealand. …

From Ashburton to New York

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Sonic Warriors lift the roof off any venue they play. Few musical acts prepare you for the devastating force and assault of a gig by this trio. Short of lyrical ideas?

Flip over a pack of painkillers and recite:
‘Adults and Children/Over twelve/Take the tablets every four hours’ ……

Why you should search out and tune into the Triffids, the Go-Betweens, and the Church.

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In an unguarded moment, you might just lose yourself in some intellectual, artistic, and hitting the emotions guitar rock. Most cities and countries have them. Sometimes they are less obvious, given the prevailing sounds. Australian or Aussie rock has its better-known hard rock/pub rock bands and AC/DC, and Cold Chisel…

(author collection)

This was a beach and a campsite in a bay deep into the Coromandel hills. The summer of 1987. To get there, we had driven a blissful three days of a new summertime rhythm of swim, soak up the sun, eat ripe red tomato and salami sandwiches, chill out with…

Photo by Carlos Coronado on Unsplash

Which drummers serve the song and stand out from their contemporaries?

There is plenty on the record about 60s beat kings Ringo and Charlie, seventies hammer of the gods tub thumpers like John Bonham and many others. But from the eighties on, who are the drummers with a difference?

Who…

Now that's a cool list idea. A track for every decade. Some good tracks selected and as you say each to their own. I would plum for Jimi Hendrix and 'Purple haze for the 60s, so many to choose from with the Who, Stones, Kinks et al, but Jimi just…

Jim Mowat

Writes about rock and indie music. Long term music lover and follower of Indie-Alternative sounds, rock with an edge and a good lyric.

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