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Stuart Adamson: In a Big Country Paperback – 1 Apr 2011


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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited; Reprint edition (1 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846971918
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846971914
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 12.7 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 46,874 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description

Review

'An overdue tribute to a visionary musician and honourable man' - Mojo

'Engaging journey through the peaks and troughs of an ultimately troubled life . . . moving and well-judged' - Word magazine

'He was a massive, massive influence on me . . . absolute genius' - James Dean Bradfield, Manic Street Preachers --Mojo

'A fitting tribute to a man whose musical legacy will live on for years to come' --Dunfermline Press

'An overdue tribute to a visionary musician and honourable man' --Mojo

About the Author

Allan Glen was born in Dunfermline and worked as a miner before studying journalism. He worked as an investigative news reporter on the South China Sunday Morning Post in Hong Kong before returning to the UK to work for NME, Melody Maker, The Guardian, The Stage, Music Week and the BBC as a broadcaster. He lives on Teesside with his family.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Too Many Books, Not Enough Time on 17 Nov 2010
Format: Hardcover
I could well be accused of being biased - Big Country was the first ever gig I went to - but I still play the music and get misty-eyed at any clip of Stuart Adamson. The prospect of a biog of Stuart was a double-edged sword, then. As a fan I desperately wanted to read it, but also as a fan I didn't want to read anything horrible about someone I adore. Luckily, Allan Glen is not only a fan but he's also a serious music journalist who grew up in Dunfermline (the band's hometown) and followed Stuart's career closely. The book celebrates all the wonderful things about the man and the music, but is also very honest about the problems and troubles that beset Stuart and led, ultimately, to him taking his own life without it turning into a gushing fanzine or (worse) a lurid hack job. I'll probably end up with three copies this Christmas, but I won't care. You can never have too much Stuart Adamson!
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63 of 64 people found the following review helpful By possessed.by.a.lemon TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 20 Nov 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
On 8 September 2010, the surviving members of Big Country announced they would be joining forces with Mike Peters of The Alarm to embark on a tour under the Big Country banner. Someone who they haven't been willing to join forces with is author Allan Glen. The public animosity towards the author from those integral to the plot is a little unfortunate given that Glen has delivered a respectful, controversy-free, fan-driven account of Stuart Adamson's life in as much detail as has been allowed him. He even takes a moment in his acknowledgements to offer his goodwill to the forthcoming official band biography.

The absence of any first-hand input from the Big Country and Skids camps does cast an undeniable shadow over the book. When you take away Ian Rankin's introduction and the foreword, discography and index, you're left with a biography just shy of 200 pages. I get the impression the author would have loved at least another 100. So would I, but Glen deserves credit for producing a faithful and ultimately moving narrative in spite of the obstacles placed in his way. Importantly, the book is blessed with the cooperation of Adamson's son, Callum, which, I suppose, is the best seal of approval of all. In A Big Country is the story of a celebrated man who famously chanted 'stay alive' to hordes of devotees, only to end up a tormented soul and victim of a tragic self-inflicted death. From a human point of view and as a lifelong fan, I don't think it's ghoulish to want to know how that story unravelled.

As expected, after the final page, we're no nearer to or farther from understanding than we already were. The final days are handled with due care, and they're as deep as the book delves into Adamson's private life. The focus centres on his bands and his music.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By michael bragg on 11 Dec 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I enjoyed reading this book and once I learned that it was coming out I had to get a copy. It's not available in the U.S. so I ordered it from Amazon U.K. There is a lot of info about Stuart, The Skids and Big Country that I was glad to learn about. It is well researched and well written. I hope that there will be an official book released by the band and I will definitely get that one, but until then, this is a great resource. It was well worth the wait.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Lincs Reader TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 19 Jan 2011
Format: Hardcover
'Stuart Adamson : In A Big Country' charts the rise of his career, from the beginning with Skids to his heyday as the lead man of Big Country.
This is more of a biography of Stuart's music, than of his life and details in detail the rise of Skids and the world-wide success of Big Country.
Stuart Adamson was one of the most respected guitarists in rock and Big Country were one of the most successful bands of the 80s. With fans including U2, Simple Minds and The Manic Street Preachers.
Stuart Adamson was an intense man, who loved music, Scotland and football. His morals and beliefs often lead to him leaving the music scene, only to reappear a few months later. During the height of his career he played venues all over the world with some of the greatest rock stars of all time.
It is clear though, from this book, that underneath the glamour there was a guy with alot of issues - he married twice and finally gave up the rock star life to live in Nashville.
As a massive Stuart Adamson fan, I found this book an excellent read - bringing back many memories and also learning things about Stuart and the band that I was not aware of.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Shirley on 17 May 2011
Format: Paperback
A very moving biography of Stuart Adamson,following his early days in punk band The Skids, then front man of Scottish band Big Country.This book gives you a insight of the music industry, life on the road in the 80s, then touches on Stuarts private life, his disappearance and then his tragic death..in a hotel room in Hawaii.This book will touch the Hearts of his many fan , it is well written, but although tragic it tells of how his music has inspired so many groups in the present day,which is a lasting tribute to him... if you are a fan please don't hesitate to buy this book
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth S. Case on 20 May 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I agree with the other 2 star reviews. Although Mr. Glen gave a great over view of The Skids and Big Country's music (much of which I am not familiar with), I truly wished he could have delved further into what made Stuart Adamson "tick". As I read, I wanted to know: why did his first marriage end in divorce? why did he come to the United States, Tennessee of all places? how did he meet up with his second wife? where did it all go so terribly wrong for Stuart Adamson, getting to the point of killing himself?

There is much more to be written about the man and his talent. Sadly, you won't find it in this book.
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