No Sleep Till Canvey Island - The Great Pub Rock Revolution
(Virgin Publishing ISBN 0753507404) 2003
Pub rock was a big movement in the UK during the 70ís with bands like
Eddie & the Hotrods, Ian Dury, Dr. Feelgood, Ducks Deluxe (great name!),
Brinsley Schwarz and many more. The book looks at the origins of pub rock
back in the late 60ís and takes it up to the late 70ís. The bookís author
himself was a member of the Kursaal Flyers, who made an impression on the
scene in the 70ís.
One of the most enjoyable aspects of the book is the anecdotal style in
which it is written. Even someone who has little or no knowledge of the
bands can readily enjoy this book. A classic example would be Brinsley
Schwarzís ill-fated attempt to break into the US by playing the Fillmore.
The bandís management flew over a planeload of rock press but the whole
event was a complete disaster! Many of the musicians and supporting cast
involved are quoted along the way including Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe and
Brinsley Schwarz. The all important pubs are also covered, detailing how
they started to take on rock bands and which bands appeared in each venue.
The supporting characters are also larger than life including the late
Barney Bubbles and manager Dave Robinson and later founder of Stiff Records.
The book also features an exhaustive bibliography, select discography and
a chronological timeline of the pub rock movement up until 1977. Very
readable, hugely enjoyable and recommended for any 70ís music fan.
Review by Jason Ritchie