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Blowing the Blues: A Personal History of the British Blues Paperback – 1 Mar 2004


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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Clear Press Ltd; Pap/Com edition (1 Mar. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1904555047
  • ISBN-13: 978-1904555049
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 15.2 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 473,862 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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I guess I hit town as the most unfledged fledgling ever. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 5 Jan. 2008
Format: Paperback
If you've not heard of Dick Heckstall-Smith, you're probably to young to remember the 70s band Colosseum. If you do remember them, this is a great book about the rise and fall of the band and the part that DHS played in it. Probably of more general interest, however, is the time DHS spent in the 60s, playing with Alexis Korner and Graham Bond at the same time as Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker, and touring with Mayall's Bluesbreakers in the Mick Taylor era. There's a fascinating chapter on Graham Bond which is almost worth the price of the book by itself. The book also covers the problems of the jazz scene in Britain, which DHS was also active in. There's also a CD which contains unreleased material - it's jazz mostly, but with rock/blues overtones and some really great performances. If you're interested in how British blues/rock came to be, you couldn't do better than to buy this.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Alisdair Fleming on 30 Dec. 2009
Format: Paperback
This is a great book and an excellent read for anyone interested in the British music scene of the 60's. Dick HS was a great instrumentalist and comes over as an honest and unpretentious bloke. The problem with this book is that it is in fact a reprint (and re-title) of DHSS autobiography "The Safest Place in the World". Now I really enjoyed this book when I bought and read it a number of years ago - so it was with some disappointment that I discovered that I had bought it again in this "revamped" version. Yes - there are some "extras" but it is basically exactly the same book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By TheHarv on 7 July 2010
Format: Paperback
I love reading biographies and hearing anicdotes about the British Blues Boom in the '60s and was really looking forward to reading this one. On reflection, I think it's a book better suited to the die hard DHS fan than those of us with a more general interst in the period. There are lots of good insights into life with Graham Bond, John Mayall and Collesseum. There's quite a bit of good stuff about the politics in those groups and how they tore themselves to pieces at a time when music and personalities were highly volatile - usually because of extreme drug consumption. However, on the whole I found the book a bit of a bore. DHS's writing style leaves much to be desired and I can't for the life of me work out what benefit there was to be gained from his chapter on racism in music - other than to understand that he's not a racist, which is good of course. I think this is a book for those who are real die hard DHS fans - If you really love him, you'll love this book. Otherwise, I'd give it a miss.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mr. P. J. Whimster on 11 Feb. 2010
Format: Paperback
The burgeoning music scene in post war Britain , under the huge influences emanating from out of the West , was influenced by a relatively small number of men...and Dick Heckstall-Smith was one of them. A sympathetic tale of human relationships , post war economics and a love of music. As recommended by Amazon , buy all three - Ginger Baker's 'Hellraiser' and 'Jack Bruce Composing Himself: The Authorised Biography' by Harry Shapiro...it's how it all began for baby boomers.
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