Memoirs from musicians Patti Smith, Elvis Costello and Grace Jones have been longlisted for the second Penderyn Music Book Prize, while biographies of John Peel, Sandy Denny and Tubby Hayes have also made the list.
Female rockers head up the longlist with memoirs Reckless (Ebury) by Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders, Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl (Virago) by Carrie Brownstein of Sleater-Kinney, Smith’s M Train (Bloomsbury) and Jones’ I’ll Never Write My Memoirs (Simon & Schuster). British musician Costello's memoir Unfaithful Music and Disappearing Ink (Viking) was also longlisted.
Biographies that have been longlisted are I Always Kept a Unicorn: A Biography of Sandy Denny (Faber) by Mich Houghton, Good Night and Good Riddance: How 35 Years of John Peel Helped to Shape Modern Life (Faber) by David Cavanagh and The Long Shadow of the Little Giant: The Life, Work and Legacy of Tubby Hayes (Equinox) by Simon Spillett.
The longlist also includes definitive music guides such as Electric Shock: From the Gramophone To The iPhone – 125 Years of Pop Music (Bodley Head) by Peter Doggett, Detroit 67: The Year That Changed Soul (Stuart Cosgrove) by Stuart Cosgrove, 1966: The Year the Decade Exploded (Faber) by Jon Savage and Life After Dark: A History of British Music Nightclubs & Music Venues (Simon & Schuster) by Dave Haslam.
Also longlisted are It’s One for the Money (Constable) by Clinton Heylin, Naked at The Albert Hall: The Inside Story of Singing (Virago) by Tracey Thorn and Original Rockers (Faber) by Richard King.
The judging panel is made up of DJ and critic, Stuart Maconie; broadcaster, Annie Nightingale; journalist, Mark Ellen; musicians Green Gartside and Eliza Carthy; actor and writer, Robin Ince and music critic, Jude Rogers.
Nightingale said: "I am honoured and delighted to be a judge for the second year of the Penderyn Music Book Prize. Frankly it’s no sweat reading about my most favourite topic in great detail and at no-holds-barred lengths. The only headache I foresee is choosing between a gripping autobiography and a factual tome crammed with fascinating minutiae. But hey, nice problem to have!"
Last year's inaugural winner, Mark Lewisohn, said: "Popular music has been central to British culture for more than half a century, so it’s fitting that literature about it should be considered for an annual prize. It was a personal thrill when Tune In won the honour in 2015, because it was the inaugural award, because Penderyn is a good company – going about its business the right way – and because the award is announced at the annual Laugharne festival, a weekend full of music, poetry and literature."
Lewisohn won the prize for his biography of The Beatles titled The Beatles: All These Years: Volume One: Tune In (Little, Brown).
The prize is organised by Richard Thomas, founder of the Laugharne Weekend Festival, and is sponsored by Welsh whisky company Penderyn, who has its distillery in the village of Penderyn nestled in the foothills of the Brecon Beacons.
The shortlist will be revealed in March. The winner will be announced at the Laugharne Weekend Festival on 3rd April 2016 and will receive £1000 and a bottle of Penderyn Single Cask single malt.
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