Thursday, 5 July 2012

"Drum Solos, Bottles and Bands" ebook

For all those of you eager to get a copy (a virtual one admittedly) of my first ever book, the waiting is nearly over! I have found someone to design the front cover though as he has disappeared off on holiday this week I will have to wait until Monday to get the finalized jpeg. It's a simple but hopefully eye-catching design. And if you don't have a Kindle, iPad or whatever to read it on, fear not, as hopefully there will be a paperback edition coming out later in the year.

In the meantime I have been doing some last minute editing and formatting for both Smashwords and Amazon. As my cover designer told me, it is best to publish on both web sites to maximize sales. So another little task I've been doing this week is writing descriptions of the book which will appear on the aforementioned web sites. This took more effort for Smashwords as you are limited to 400 characters or fewer. So this is what I've come up with, the subtitle of the book being "Memories of a Concert-goer 1981-1999".

SMASHWORDS description

Recollections from a selection of concerts the author went to in the UK during the 1980s and 90s. Ranging from big names like Queen and ZZ Top to less well known bands such as Stump and Urge Overkill, the book describes events that made the gigs memorable such as a fire alarm going off during a gig, a guitarist performing an encore naked and a singer pushing a drunken fan off the stage.

AMAZON description

The title of this book comes from the inevitable drum solos at rock concerts, the plastic bottles thrown in the air between acts at the Monsters of Rock festival and some of the many bands the author saw playing live around Scotland, at Castle Donington and in London between 1981 and 1999.

This musical journey starts in the sedate surroundings of Edinburgh's Usher Hall with Sky - the rock group formed by classical guitarist John Williams. We then move on to The Edinburgh Playhouse, Scotland's main concert venue in the 1980s, with the author attending concerts by big names such as Elton John, Madness, Iron Maiden and Motorhead. Two years at college in Aberdeen, seeing artists as diverse as The Stranglers and Stephane Grappelli, are followed by a move to London with the excitement of seeing Eric Clapton at the Albert Hall and The Who at Wembley Arena along with plenty of gigs at smaller venues. The final chapter sees the author return to his native Scotland and includes memorable gigs by Manic Street Preachers and Iggy Pop in Glasgow.

But this book is not just a list of bands and venues. Having been to over 300 concerts in those 18 years, the author focuses on events that made certain ones stand out - a smoke alarm going off midway through a Jane's Addiction gig, Captain Sensible of The Damned returning to the stage to play an encore wearing nothing more than his beret and sunglasses, and ex-Strangler Hugh Cornwell stopping half way through a song to push a drunken fan off the stage. There are also stories of unpredictable bar staff, overzealous security men, hard working road crews and concerts being cancelled or moved to a different venue with little or no notice.

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