Stuart Maconie's isn't a proper autobiography, in the sense that it doesn't cover many of life's milestones. For example, the book brings us fairly up to date in Maconie's career, but we don't find out whether his parents are still alive. The book is also poorly edited in that it is littered with spelling mistakes.
That said, this is a brilliant account of the evolution of a pop music lover's taste as he moves from Beatle-loving infant to writer for Q magazine, DJ for BBC Radio Two and contributor to TV nostalgia programmes. It helps that he is of a similar age to me (fortysomething) and many of the artists he picks out are also favourites of mine (e.g. Gentle Giant, Chic and Return to Forever). But while I was brought up in southern England, Stuart was raised in the north-west. He likes many artists and styles I have yet to grow fond of: Morrissey, Northern Soul, and the Clash, for example. And while I often dreamed of being in a band -- it would have helped if I'd bothered to learn an instrument -- Stuart actually did it, albeit to no great commercial success.
Maconie is particularly good on the religious divide that separated school kids in the 1970s. Were you a Slade fan or a T Rex fan? On such theological questions hung the matter of whether you would get beaten up at the bus stop by the school bully.
Spelling aside, Maconie is a great writer. (His three years studying for a degree in English Literature gets much coverage in the book.)
Maconie knows his audience and readership. While a family update would aid the completeness of the autobiography, Maconie knows that most of his readers would rather see the space devoted to his views on Sting (negative) and facts about Eno than his aunt Mildred's kidney problems.
This book is firmly aimed at people who lived through the 1970s knowing that there was almost nothing more important than pop music.