Welcome to the first Joe Boyd newsletter. If you would prefer that this be your last, please click on the appropriate link at the bottom of the page.
Some of you have subscribed via the website – www.joeboyd.co.uk – and some are receiving it because I put your name on a list. For the latter group, I should point out that while the website is largely a shameless publicity tool, it has the redeeming feature that you can use it to listen to some of my favourite music via the streaming of radio programmes I have done recently – listen while you work! You can also read articles I have written, ponder the glowing reviews of my book and find out about upcoming radio and live appearances as I continue to put off writing my next book by promoting White Bicycles.
The US WB campaign starts March 16 at 1:45pm in Austin, TX at the SXSW festival, followed by events at Joe’s Pub in New York, Passim’s in Cambridge MA and other hubs of culture from coast to coast. My UK publisher, Serpents Tail, are taking on the challenge with the help of Consortium, their US distributor and Shore Fire, the best (in my view) music publicists in America. As no American publisher matched their commitment it should be an exciting David v Goliath story with, insh’allah, as happy an ending as we have had in the UK (nearing the 20,000 mark in sales).
There is already a Spanish translation, whose publication via Global Rhythm Press is imminent with a German version courtesy of Kunstmann Verlag and a French one from Allia to follow later this year.
My recent BBC Radio 4 tribute to the great A&R man John Hammond can now be heard on the website. Hammond signed Billie Holiday, Benny Goodman, Teddy Wilson, Count Basie in the ’30s, then came back 30 years later to kick off the careers of Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and Aretha Franklin. Much to my astonishment, the BBC budget for the programme stretched to flying in Dunstan Prial, author of The Producer (an excellent biography of Hammond) to join me and host Matthew Parris in extolling the great man’s life and works.
I can also recommend a new Dedalus book, The Decadent Handbook (edited by Rowan Pelling), which includes an extract from White Bicycles dealing with what Rowan considered the suitably louche goings-on at the UFO Club in 1967.
It has been a very gratifying year. After sending so many musicians out on tour, I have enjoyed being both tour manager and artist. The summer festivals took me to parts of England I hadn’t visited in many years and I had a chance to meet some of the fans who have been buying records I’ve produced going back to the 1960s.
When there is more to report, I will send another newsletter.
All the best