"In some quarters, I was regarded as a highly suspect, self-publicising egomaniac." There is little in Give the Anarchist a Cigarette
--a self-aggrandising but hugely entertaining memoir--that would lead you to form any other opinion of Mick Farren. His unabashed egotism is present on every. Farren, who ran the door at the now legendary psychedelic club UFO and worked on the underground paper International Times
--even successfully defending it against an obscenity charge--was a key figure in London's 60s and 70s counter-culture scene. In an era not known for restraint, he imbibed extraordinary quantities of drink and drugs and generally indulged in the kind of sexual gymnastics that now carry severe health warnings. Former lovers included Germaine Greer and Julie Burchill. His band, The Deviants, were, as he rather tirelessly points out, punk years before the Sex Pistols. They played Hyde Park, toured with the Pretty Things and a fledgling Led Zeppelin and cut a series of influential albums. As flower power gave way to the three-day week Farren concentrated on writing, working for the New Musical Express
and penning a series of fantasy novels--the latter he informs us are now regarded by one critic as the "definite forerunners" of cyberpunk fiction. Assessments of his own contribution to contemporary culture may be inflated but Farren's candid, amusing and intelligent book offers a vivid and insightful portrait of rock & roll's finest decades.--Travis Elborough
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Seriously good." -- Julie Burchill, "Spectator"