White Rabbit will publish journalist and broadcaster Jude Rogers’ first book The Sound of Being Human, a combination of memoir and historical, scientific and cultural enquiry which will show how music can shape different versions of ourselves.
Publisher Lee Brackstone acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from Lisa Baker at Aitken Alexander. It will be published in hardback, trade paperback, e-book and audio on 5th May 2022.
The synopsis reads: "The Sound of Being Human explores, in detail, why music plays such a deep-rooted role in so many lives, from before we are born to our last days. At its heart is Jude’s own story: how songs helped her wrestle with the grief of losing her father at age five; concoct her own sense of self as a lonely adolescent; sky-rocket her relationships, both real and imagined, in the flushes of early womanhood; propel her own journey into working life, adulthood and parenthood; and look to the future."
The title is closely connected to the author's BBC Radio 4 series "A Life In Music" and will be shaped around 12 songs, ranging from Abba’s "Super Trouper" to Neneh Cherry’s "Buffalo Stance", Kraftwerk’s "Radioactivity" to Martha Reeves and the Vandellas’ "Heat Wave".
Brackstone said: "A rare, illuminating and emotionally powerful blend of pop culture and pop science, The Sound of Being Human is a book that will prompt you to reassess your relationship to music and how it comes to define us at the key moments in our life. How and why do we connect so profoundly and overwhelmingly with certain songs? Why is music the mirror that often shines a light on the most raw and vital parts of our humanity? Jude Rogers’ hybrid memoir explores all of this and I am so proud her debut will be a White Rabbit book."
Rogers has written for the Guardian, the Observer, the Sunday Times, the Times Saturday Review, Daily Telegraph and New Statesman.
She commented: "Lee has been encouraging me to write a book for over a decade, but when this idea arrived almost fully-formed a few years ago—the day after Mark Hollis from Talk Talk died, and a piece I wrote about the power of his music for the Guardian struck a nerve with many people—I realised it’s the book I’d had inside my all my life. Lee got it straightaway and his encouragement has meant everything. I’ve loved digging into my musical past, not only into researching my favourite songs, but by speaking to so many fascinating people about why music moves us, transports us, helps us and heals us. I’m also over the moon to be published by White Rabbit at a very exciting time for them."
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