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“This is the best book about music I’ve read in years, and a gripping piece of social history.”—Brian Eno
When Muddy Waters came to London at the start of the 1960s, a kid from Boston called Joe Boyd was his tour manager; when Dylan went electric at the Newport Festival, Joe Boyd was plugging in his guitar; when the summer of love got going, Joe Boyd was running UFO, the coolest club in London; when a bunch of club regulars called Pink Floyd recorded their first single, Joe Boyd was the producer; when a young songwriter named Nick Drake wanted to give his demo tape to someone, he chose Joe Boyd.
More than any previous sixties music autobiography, Joe Boyd’s White Bicycles offers the real story of what it was like to be there at the time. As well as the sixties heavy-hitters, this book also offers wonderfully vivid portraits of a whole host of other musicians: everyone from the great jazzman Coleman Hawkins to the folk diva Sandy Denny, Lonnie Johnson to Eric Clapton, Sister Rosetta Tharpe to Fairport Convention.
Record and film producer Joe Boyd was born in Boston in 1942 and graduated from Harvard in 1964. He went on to produce Pink Floyd, Nick Drake, Fairport Convention, R.E.M., and many others. He produced the documentary Jimi Hendrix and the film Scandal. In 1980 he started Hannibal Records and ran it for twenty years. He lives in London.
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Record and film producer Joe Boyd was born in Boston in 1942, and was the producer of Pink Floyd, Nick Drake, Fairport Convention, REM and many others. He produced the documentary 'Jimi Hendrix' and the film 'Scandal'. In 1980 he started Hannibal Records and ran it for 20 years. Boyd lives in London.Review:
As a memoir of the enchanted Sixties, White Bicycles is among the elite. It isn't just that Boyd was among the era's movers and shakers, he has a rare recall of events ('I never got too stoned,' he confesses) and a fluid, engaging style. The book bristles with evocative anecdotes... Exhilarating * Observer Music Monthly * This engaging and readable book is an important addition to the history of its time...terrific...pleasantly gossipy -- Hanif Kureishi * New Statesman * Boyd writes in a dry, assured style about remarkable times, and he achieves the goal of any music book: to make the reader want to check out the music he writes about -- Will Hodgkinson * Guardian Guide * One of the most lucid and insightful music autobiographies I've read -- Michel Faber * Guardian * Reading Boyd's cracking account of the Sixties, you wonder if his life since hasn't been one long disappointment... It's a colourful story, beautifully told...You are left relieved that such a central figure wrote this exceptional memoir -- Mark Ellen * Observer * A vivid eye-witness account...pulses with the mad enthusiasms of its period and its author -- Robert Sandall * Sunday Times * An unashamed celebration of Boyd's pivotal role in the Sixties * The Times * Boyd is one of that select group of rock luminaries, like John Peel, or the American producer Rick Rubin, who didn't have to pick up a guitar to shape the evolution of entire genres of music.And this book is the perfect literary echo of a lifetime's subtle facilitation... Boyd's pages abound with astute observations and fascinating personal detail...a transport of delight * Independent on Sunday * [A] riveting memoir * Time Out * A wise, thoughtful and engrossing account, White Bicycles is one of the best 1960's essays of recent years * Scotsman * A rock memoir that shuns the usual 60s cliches... while providing insightful character studies of Brit-folk's future stars... refreshing and cleverly observed * Uncut * Compulsive quirky detail, rare sanity and razor sharp recall... puts it in the same bracket as Simon Napier Bell's Black Vinyl White Powder or Julian Cope's Head On.A delight * The List * Among the musical anecdotes are thoughtful observations on the era... Boyd remains a true believer, for whom it was a joy to have been alive in that permissive dawn.At 40 years' distance, his prose still conveys the hues of the sunrise with startling vividness -- Nigel Williamson * The Times * If there's such a thing as living a perfectly timed life, then Joe Boyd has managed it... impossible to put down * Q Magazine * Packed full of funny, telling anecdotes and wry, insightful observation, it takes us on a fantastic musical adventure * fRoots * What a wonderful book! I was so engrossed I missed my train station. A gripping piece of social history and the best book about music I've read in years * Brian Eno * Boyd's account far exceeds the breadth of most rose-tinted ruminations...detailed and lucid... A wise, thoughtful and engrossing account, White Bicycles is one of the best 1960s essays of recent years * Scotsman * [A] bittersweet and thoroughly entertaining memoir... There's a story behind those insights, and Boyd tells it with the kind of tender precision that raises White Bicycles far above the ordinary rock bio and into the realm of valuable cultural commentary * Boston Globe * Most music industry memoirs that aspire to "Zelig" like levels of synchronicity read like "Forrest Gump," with narrators witnessing or facilitating one crucial moment after the next, until the whole enterprise makes your teeth ache like a box of chocolates.The simple brilliance of "White Bicycles" is that its author never overstates his own importance or exaggerates his failings, and still ends up telling an irresistible tale * New York Times Book Review * Boyd's wit and candor are rare enough, but what truly makes his writing stand out are his insights into an era when rock'n'roll still seemed exciting and strange: in a single phrase he can pin down the difference between destitute British folk musicians and their American counterparts * New York Times Book Review *
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