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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars TAKE ME BACK 'OME....
This is a very honest, sometimes funny and often sad story of one of our best drummers. It takes you right back to the Black Country roots of Don, the quiet one at the back of the loudest band of the 1970's, then based on his personal diaries, Lise Lyng Falkenberg takes us on a roller coaster ride through the life of this very modest man. Through all the ups and downs,...
Published 9 months ago by Ms. C. Williams

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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Look wot you lost
Not such a good ready as Noddy Holders book about Slade. Don tries to make himself
look like a big rock star with references to hanging out drinking with Ozzie Osbourne. Have you ever stopped to wonder where the Slade money really went Don ?
Nod and Jim get the royalty cash for the writing the hits. But you and Dave were ripped off big time, a long with other...
Published 7 months ago by Olddonkey


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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars TAKE ME BACK 'OME...., 6 Oct 2013
By 
Ms. C. Williams "Caz" (Cannock, England) - See all my reviews
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This is a very honest, sometimes funny and often sad story of one of our best drummers. It takes you right back to the Black Country roots of Don, the quiet one at the back of the loudest band of the 1970's, then based on his personal diaries, Lise Lyng Falkenberg takes us on a roller coaster ride through the life of this very modest man. Through all the ups and downs, his life has certainly been "colourful" and could so easily have ended in disaster in more ways than one, but how brilliant that he has come through it all to find happiness and contentment. Thank you Don for allowing us a peep inside the diaries, and thank you Lise for taking the time to make them into this book.....a very good read, and not just for Slade fans. Highly recommended for anyone with the slightest interest, however small in British music and bands.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Look Wot I Dun: Don Powell - My Life in Slade, 3 Nov 2013
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Slade have always been a greatly underrated rock band, and having been a Slade fan since around 2004, when I was about 10 years old at the time, I've grown up to become a massive fan of the band. Extremely under-appreciated for most part, Slade not only had a great reputation as a live band but also recorded excellent albums/songs, one after another, from 1969 to 1991. They always held a unique sound that was Slade, but over their career they managed to creatively evolve through the times and mould their sound around new styles from glam rock, hard rock, heavy metal and pop rock amongst others. Don Powell's biography, as noted in the book itself, started in around 2006, and certainly took a good number of years to fully come together. The long wait for Slade fans was certainly worth it.

Powell's biography covers his life in the most honest and detailed way. Noddy Holder's "Who's Crazee Now?" biography from over ten years ago was a good read but I did feel it lacked detail on certain parts of the band's career, and was perhaps all too brief for most part. Together Powell and writer Lise Lyng Falkenberg have covered all parts of Slade's career, and Powell's life, in a balanced and honest account. It must be said first off that this book consistently comes up with the goods, from chapter to chapter, as Powell's life is put across to the reader in such a way that the book will be nagging at you until you complete it from start to finish. A great advantage for the book was Powell's own personal diaries, and this means the readers are ensured of an accurate and honest insight into an underrated rock drummer. We learn about Powell not only as the Slade drummer, but on a personal level too, as he is very sincere and frank about all aspects of his life. Additionally we have plenty of comments and quotes from many other people in the music business etc and this gives the book much more depth than it would have had otherwise. They enrich the book with interesting comments on varying parts of Powell's life and career.

As someone who has consistently searched for all things Slade over the years, and even contributed pretty much every bit of information on Wikipedia articles of Slade's albums and singles, as well as having my own Slade website, I was pleased to find plenty of new information I wasn't aware of in Powell's book. I believe I have a lot of deep knowledge on the band, and so it was a treat to read things new to me, and entirely from Powell's perspective on Slade's career in general. In that sense the book will appeal to the most diehard Slade fans but also to those who are only casual Slade fans, or even those who cannot particularly call themselves fans of the band. The book acts as great insight into the rock 'n' roll lifestyle for anyone who has an interest in rock bands in general. I must thank Don Powell and Lise Lyng Falkenberg for a wonderful read. "Look Wot I Dun: Don Powell - My Life in Slade" is everything a biography should be, and deserves all the merit it can get.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of rock's honest men., 17 Nov 2013
By 
12stringbassist "....." (NorthWest, UK) - See all my reviews
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It was a great pleasure to read this book. I have followed the ups and downs of Slade since 1972 and have met the band a great many times. It's good to read the REAL truth about those ups and downs in such a well written and heavily researched book.

Don tells us about how the band formed, their glory years, the USA misadventure and the University gig years as well as the bitter ending, the squabbles afterwards, the Slade II years and hints at the business disagreements that have fragmented the band forever afterward (but not saying quite enough to get himself sued to Hell and back by Holder and Lea).

Though Hill and Powell were effectively shafted by the other two business wise (two have to work, two don't), he remains good natured about it all and this book tells his / their story in an unbiased and natural way.

I can't recommend this book highly enough. It's far closer tot he definitive word on Slade than Holder's autobiography (Who's Crazee Now??) which placed Holder in one certain situation he never saw in Germany... that doesn't therefore make it into Don's book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The bangin' man, 12 Nov 2013
By 
Bantam Dave (Bradford, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Look Wot I Dun: Don Powell of Slade (Kindle Edition)
Although they were at the peak over forty years ago Slade are still performing to this day, albeit with a different line-up. Noddy Holder and Jim Lea left the band in 1992 but Dave Hill and Don Powell have carried on, playing gigs to appreciative audiences who love to hear the old Slade hits or just want to have a good time. That Don Powell is still performing after all these years on is particularly laudable when you recall that back in 1973 he was involved in a devastating car crash in which his fellow passenger did not survive. Don was in an extremely critical condition following the accident and despite being in a coma for six days he was able to pull through and then go on to amaze everybody when he was back recording with Slade the following month. The accident though as left him with no sense of taste or smell and, more damagingly, has severely affected his short term memory. This has meant that the writer of this biography has had to make full use of the diaries that Powell had to keep simply to help him remember what he had done each day.

Despite the subject having little recollection of many of the events this is still an excellent rock `n' roll biography. Slade were always a peoples group with few delusions of grandeur and this clearly shines through in this book as Powell has allowed his biographer to write a `warts and all' account of his life and career. It becomes clear that Don Powell has followed the classic rock star lifestyle - too much booze, too many drugs, too much womanising - but above all this you can tell that he is also a good bloke (nobody seems to have a bad word for him) and the contentment that he has at last found with his wife Hanna living in Denmark seems truly well deserved.

This is not just the story of Don Powell, as this is also the story of one of Britain's best loved but probably most under-rated bands, Slade. Because Powell was around during every significant event in Slade's history, including their incarnations as The `N Betweens, Ambrose Slade and Slade II, this book can almost be read as a biography of Slade as well as a biography of Don Powell. Perhaps the only disappointment of this book is that whilst a great number of people have contributed to it, there is no input from Noddy Holder. Sadly, I can only presume that he declined requests to contribute.

When I pick up a biography I want an interesting read with plenty of stories from the subjects life, and this book certainly ticks those boxes. As well as this though, the best biographies will help you feel as though you know the subject; after reading Look Wot I Dun I feel as though I know, and like, Don Powell.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Slade - The Truth, 25 Dec 2013
By 
David J. KEMP (Huntingdon, Cambs) - See all my reviews
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I have been waiting for this book for years.

The writer has used Don's actual Diaries as the source of reference for the book. The result? The truth.

It is an honest recollection of Don Powell's life in Slade... his life as part of rock and roll history. You'll love the highs, and you will feel the lows... But more than anything you will find out the truth behind Slade.

For any 70's / Glam / Rock fan - this book is a must!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Look Wot HE Dun, 15 Dec 2013
By 
Geoffrey Lake "banginman" (Shropshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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PLEASE NOTE THIS REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Back in 1999 when Slade vocalist Noddy Holder announced his forthcoming autobiography 'Who's Crazee Now? I was like a kid waiting for Christmas. Being a huge Slade fan, who wouldn't be? When it was finally released I was there at W.H.Smiths on the day of release. A few days later having finished it I was left a little disappointed. I am not sure what I was really expecting. The book although entertaining, left me with the feeling that it was not the full story. It started very well with Nod's childhood, the early days of Slade etc. As I read on, I got the feeling that the last few chapters were somehow rushed. Was Nod trying to beat a deadline? The latter part of the book was thin of information to say the least. The Slade 'wilderness' years were very poorly represented and let's be honest, we all wanted to know how Nod and the band felt at that time. Also now in hindsight we know some of the dates and information in this book is incorrect. For example, Slade's first time playing together is put as April 1st is simply not true. A later extended paperback version was released but however 'once bitten.....'

Now, we have a chance to see another side of the Slade story. This time from powerhouse drummer and all round nice guy Don Powell. Firstly though, the cover is misleading. The title 'Look Wot I Dun - My Life in Slade' gives the impression that this is an autobiography. This is not true. The book was written and superbly researched by Lise Lyng Falkenberg with the help of Don. Slade fans have been waiting a good few years for this book as we have all been reading the progress from Slade forums, Lise's own web pages '[...] and Don Powell's own website '[...] Lise explains in the book that it took five and a half years to get this book to print but in this case it has been worth it.

This book it a far more informative and far better researched view of Slade than Nod's book, and reveals some of Don's darker moments and lapses throughout his career. Don Powell's horrendous car accident in 1973 which resulted in Powell's amnesia even to this day meant that he needed to write stuff down. The result was a set of diaries that are the back bone to a lot of this book. Don informs us in the foreword that the diaries contains a lot of stuff about others that can never be put to print without upsetting friends but he is keen to point out that 'my aim was only to dish the dirt on myself.'

Chapters 1 to 8 reveal Don's early life, the school years, his first early drumming days with the 'Vendors' and 'N betweens, meeting Dave, Jim and Noddy, the trip to the Bahamas's and meeting their soon to be manager former 'Animal' bassist and Jimi Hendrix manager Chas Chandler.

Chapter 9 to 14 take us through Slade's glory years, singles, albums, recording, touring, the glam years and up to the Slade movie. The latter part of Chapter 11 and the whole of Chapter 12 deals with Don's car crash which, apart from giving him amnesia also took his sense of taste and smell with it. These chapters are very well written and I found very moving. Starting with the now famous Earl's Court gig which took place just three days earlier, the accident and up to his waking, panicking in hospital, and the following aftermath of all this. It informs how his close friends noticed his changed personality and constant forgetfulness. At this time he sometimes needed reminding how Slade's hits were played. Trips to so called 'experts' to try and cure this and his dawn realisation that this was something he was going to have to learn to live with for the rest of his life.

All through this book we can read contributions from people, associates and friends such as Suzi Quatro, Sweets' Andy Scott, Status Quo's Francis Rossi, Dave Hill, Jimmy Lea, Jona Lewie, Gene Simmons, many former band members, roadies, publicist Keith Altham and even Don's family.

Chapters 15 to 19 deals with the USA sojourn, the wilderness years, Slade's re-emergence at the Reading and Donnington festivals, Slade back in the charts etc. The Wilderness years (referred to in the book as 'The Lean Years') was of great interest to me. Going into much more detail than Holder's book. It is quite an eye opener to read Don was 'On The Dole'. It is also now quite obvious that Dave Hill and Powell suffered a lot more that Lea/Holder at this time. Not being the songwriters and the 'other two' now owning the song-writing publishing rights to Slade's back catalogue they were literally 'high and dry' (excuse the pun). Also in these chapters it appears not all were Chas Chandler fans, in fact some comments really shocked this reader, with some believing he did not always have Slade's best interests at heart.

At this time too Don was drinking heavily (and a surprise about those huge bottles of whisky seen on the stage in the 1970's) and Don's promiscuity was getting out of hand. Don reveals he was thinking of leaving Slade. These are things that could have been left out of the book but I appreciate the honesty of including the 'warts and all' stance.

The last chapters 20 to 26 includes 'cracking the USA', Slade two, Don marital status, the different Slade line up changes and all ends it on a much happier note. Smoking, drinking and even a brief spell of drug taking are now things of the past.

All is all Lise Lyng Falkenberg should be applauded for this superb insight into one of the UK's greatest drummers. Not only is the research exhaustive but the writing flows so well, making this very easy to read. I never put the book down for three days and was quite saddened to finish it. Although I had heard some of the stories within the pages, 85% was new to me. It not only gives a better insight to Slade's career but does what it says on the cover. It charts the life of one of the real nice guys in rock. Don Powell is without doubt one of life's true survivors. It was nice to read he is now settled and living with his wife and adopted family in Denmark. He enjoys his life and still tours with Dave in the new Slade. Good luck to him.

So this book is very much a worthwhile purchase. I thank Lise Lyng Falkenberg (and Don) for a very enjoyable read, a must buy!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Know Who He Is!!, 9 Jan 2014
Far better than Nod's book and a MUST read for Slade fans and any music fan from the Midlands or UK rock fan (I'm a Geordie BTW). Better, because it is more of a 'warts and all' honest account of how it really was - no pretense or viewing the past through rose rims and no holding back the juicy bits, compared to Nod's restrained 'half of the story' book. No holds barred all the way from the early years finding their collective and immense voice in the late 60s through the rocket ship ride of the early 70s, their major mistake of abandoning their core fan-base for the Yankee dollar (tut tut Chas!)and the bottom of the trough in the late 70s. Don continues right to the present day through the revival years - the Second Coming - and brings us through to the present version of Slade - well, the boyz are entitled to make a living!!

Who would have thought that Don had co-written many of their early songs, which are some of my favourites - which forged the raw Slade power captured on Slade Alive. These songs had working class grit, depth, intrigue and stark pull and are far greater than some of the Holder/Lea pop hits later penned. I became a little angry and totally disagree with how much praise he self-effacingly heaped on the 'superior' song writing of Nod/Jim, which into the 1980s became all too often tardy, cheap and superficial anthemic good time dad rock of little merit.

I also didn't know that Don had been a serial womaniser and an alcoholic but was delighted to see that he is now a camomile sipping happy family man who really appears to have found some inner peace. Wonderbar, and I wish you many more happy years to come old son!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really good read, 9 Jan 2014
By 
P Davis (UK) - See all my reviews
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Being a fan of Slade, I was delighted to read another perspective on the band, and the people. The story, especially of the early years was fascinating, and Don's account of his life after the accident, the input from friends and family, and his most recent years and the words from his new family made it compulsive reading.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hey hey hey!, 5 Jan 2014
By 
Mrs C E Andrews (Four Marks Alton) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Look Wot I Dun: Don Powell of Slade (Kindle Edition)
Having read Noddy Holders autobiography, I felt Don Powell's went into a lot more detail of Slades early years and was far more informative.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pow wow!, 19 Nov 2013
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Can't be dissappointed reading this book! If you love Slade, you will also love this book. I recommend it for all Slade fans and those who would like to explore the band.
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Look Wot I Dun: Don Powell of Slade
Look Wot I Dun: Don Powell of Slade by Lise Lyng Falkenberg
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