Daniel Rachel's book about politics and pop music "coming together for the first time in Britain's musical history" has won the 2017 Penderyn Music Book Prize.
At a ceremony which took place yesterday (9th April) during the Laugharne Weekend Festival, Rachel was presented with a cheque for £1,000 and a bottle of Penderyn Single Cask Whiskey for his book Walls Come Tumbling Down: The Music and Politics of Rock Against Racism, 2 Tone and Red Wedge. Published by Picador, the book charts the pivotal period between 1976 and 1992 that saw politics and pop music "come together for the first time in Britain's musical history".
Rachel said: “I am so thrilled to receive the Penderyn Music Book Prize. This award is a tribute to the 100 or more contributors to the book whose actions and songs changed our country’s cultural landscape and a remainder to tomorrow’s heroes that pop music can change the world”.
Rachel beat off competition from This is Grime by Hattie Collins and Olivia Rose (Hodder), Young Soul Rebels: A Personal History of Northern Soul by Stuart Cosgrove (Polygon), 1971 - Never a Dull Moment: Rock's Golden Year by David Hepworth (Bantam), The Rise, The Fall, and The Rise by Brix Smith Start (Faber), Into The Maelstrom: Music, Improvisation and the Dream of Freedom by David Toop, (Bloomsbury Academic), I'm Not with The Band: A Writer's Life Lost in Music by Sylvia Patterson (Sphere), and Testimony by Robbie Robertson (William Heinemann).
Judging the 2017 award was comedian and musican Stewart Lee; singer Charlotte Church; joint m.d. at Rough Trade, Geoff Travis; singer and writer Tracey Thorn; musician Eliza Carthy; musician and former singer and guitarist of Sonic Youth, Thurston Moore; and Jane Beese, head of music at the Roundhouse.
The prize is organised by Richard Thomas, founder of the Laugharne Weekend Festival, and is the only UK-based book prize specifically for international music titles including history, theory, biography, autobiography.