Memoirs by Patti Smith and Elvis Costello have been shortlisted for the Penderyn Music Book Prize, the only UK-based book prize specifically for music titles.
Joining Smith’s M Train (Bloomsbury) and Costello’s Unfaithful Music and Disappearing Ink (Viking) on the shortlist is Electric Shock: From Gramophone to the iPhone – 125 Years of Pop Music (Bodley Head) by Peter Doggett, 1966: The Year The Decade Explored (Faber) by Jon Savage, Detroit 67: The Year that Changed Soul (Stuart Cosgrove) by Stuart Cosgrove and Naked at the Albert Hall: The Inside Story of Singing (Virago) by Tracey Thorn.
Richard Thomas, the prize founder, said: “It was an incredibly strong and varied longlist which went from traditional biographies to specific years, to songwriting royalities and the joys of working in a record shop. I read and enjoyed all the books and was very relieved that I did not have to be a judge.”
Stuart Maconie, broadcaster and judge, said: “It was great music writing almost as much as great music that inspired me as a teenager and made me want to write myself. In Britain, we can rightly boast of some of the finest writing in this field in the world; not just scholarly and learned, but witty, impassioned and insightful. The Penderyn Prize is a very welcome celebration of this.”
Judging the prize alongside Maconie is broadcaster and author, Annie Nightingale; journalist, Mark Ellen; musician Green Gartside; actor and writer, Robin Ince; and music critic, Jude Rogers.
The winner will be announced at the Laugharne Weekend Festival on 3rd April 2016.