- Hardcover: 704 pages
- Publisher: William Heinemann (6 Sept. 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0434020664
- ISBN-13: 978-0434020669
- Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 4.4 x 24 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 426,881 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
A Light That Never Goes Out: The Enduring Saga of the Smiths Hardcover – Import, 6 Sep 2012
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"[A] meticulous biography…This exhaustive, well-researched account brings fresh detail and thought to the party." (The Sunday Times)
"A finely judged re-telling of a remarkable tale with valuable first-hand accounts of the band’s American adventures, their rapid development into a wonderful live act, plus insights into the spiralling pressures and frictions that faced the individual band members." (Sabotage Times)
"An exhaustive labour of love that was three years in the writing but which will be lapped up by fans of the band...written with a real sense of love and affection for the group who, though they were only together for a mere five years, tilted the world on its axis to a degree not seen since the heyday of the Beatles and the Stones…Fletcher is excellent when it comes to widening the view to include the cultural and historical factors behind the band's emergence and the city from which they came." (Irish Independent)
"The story of the Smiths told on the basis of interviews with just about every surviving participant in the Smiths' story. As the story winds on, a chain of no-shows, fits of pique and self-sabotage ... reaches its denouement with an episode from April 1987, just prior to the band's formal break-up. Fletcher is the first writer to have got the full story. Such material highlights the extent to which Fletcher has done his research." (Guardian)
"Tony Fletcher’s account is a highly enjoyable way of revisiting [the] story. Crucially, he avoids areas well-served by other Smiths tomes and brings sufficient new material to reward even well-read fans…It’s a tale that’s been told before, but in his biography of the Manchester four-piece Tony Fletcher reveals new details and brings new depths to the story of Morrissey, Marr, Rourke, Joyce and the birth of the band." (Mojo)
The first group biography of one of the greatest British bands of all time - The Smiths.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Some might recall author Johnny Rogan's book about the Smiths from the mid-nineties with the same fondness as I do, and if you are among those who do you surely will enjoy reading A Light That Never Goes Out. Those who are familiar with the author will know that he has written two distinctly different types of musical biographies; short concise bios such as his Clash, Bunnymen and REM books, and complete compendium encyclopedic bios such as his Kieth Moon bio and his recent All Hopped Up book about the history of the music of NYC; this book falls into the latter category. Though some might criticize the book for being too long or diverging too far from the main theme, I found that his detailed description of Manchester and the early lives of Moz and Marr was insightful. I find it very interesting to try to understand where artists come from; what makes them who they are. Just as you can't understand The Ramones without understanding 60's pop & 70's NYC grittiness, it would be impossible to understand The Smiths without having the background that Tony does such a great job of relating. Maybe to some older readers who were around to have seen The Smiths and were teenagers during those years this all seems obvious, but 35 years later it is a history lesson for some that needs taught.
Once Tony gets through that essential and interesting background his descriptions of the Smiths Story as it happened (especially the American Tour which I always thought Rogan's book was lacking in good info) is well-written and fresh.Read more ›
For The Smiths everything happened fast.Read more ›
This book evens the playing field and emphasises Marr's incredible role along with the input of Rourke and Joyce.
The book is extremely well researched even if Moz didn't cooperate.
In fact, the band doesn't form until p210 so the rest is deep background on the players and their city - making it a book for devotees first and foremost!!
The break up is painfully chronicled and becomes inevitable all too soon.
Marr's frustration, Moz's narcissism and no management killed this beautiful creature in its prime.
The book does leave you feeling what could have been...although be thankful that Marr did knock on that door all those years ago....
PS- a personal favourite part of the book for me is the detailed description of the recording of "How Soon is Now"one of the greatest songs ever put to record.
Frankly Mr Fletcher...you are definitely NOT a flatulent pain in the ass!!!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book by Keith Moon biographer Tony Fletcher is superb on the background and run up to the Smiths coming together, particularly on Morrissey and Marr's childhoods but it's... Read morePublished 17 months ago by Robbie Matador
Not surprisingly, this book isn't really for women. It's written from a male fan's point of view, with lots of tedious facts and geeky details. Read morePublished on 16 Sept. 2014 by Carolyn Smith
really interesting and great book for smiths fan but if you havent heard of them or dont adore them you might not like it as much but it's still interesting and really well writtenPublished on 4 May 2014 by daniel
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