- Title: All the Mad Men
- Author: Clinton Heylin
- ISBN: 9781849018
- Page: 303
- Format: Hardcover
After the Summer of Love how English Rock lost itself, went mad, and produced some of the finest music.By the end of 1968 The Beatles were far too busy squabbling with each other, while The Stones had simply stopped making music English Rock was coming to an end All the Mad Men tells the story of six stars that travelled to edge of sanity in the years following the sumAfter the Summer of Love how English Rock lost itself, went mad, and produced some of the finest music.By the end of 1968 The Beatles were far too busy squabbling with each other, while The Stones had simply stopped making music English Rock was coming to an end All the Mad Men tells the story of six stars that travelled to edge of sanity in the years following the summer of love Pete Townshend, Ray Davies, Peter Green, Syd Barrett, Nick Drake, and David Bowie.The book charts how they made some of the most seminal rock music ever recorded Pink Moon Ziggy Stardust Quadrophenia Dark Side of the Moon Muswell Hillbillies and how some of them could not make it back from the brink.The extraordinary story of how English Rock went mad and found itself
Recent Comments "All the Mad Men"
Great idea; shame about the writer. All The Madmen is billed as an exploration of the influence of mental illness - and to a lesser extent, drugs - on the British music scene c.1968-75. Though in practice, what we get is an entwined biography of the musicians mentioned in the sub-title, with an emphasis on nervous breakdowns, plus a few digressions about R.D. Laing and a couple of short chapters on the history of madness in England at the end.As he's a very experienced rock biographer, I would t [...]
Well, I finished it in the end. Which, as it happens, is pretty much what Clinton Heylin did; there's a curiously arbitrary point at which the narrative stops, and it's tempting to wonder if he, like me, had more or less lost interest in the project after a few hundred pages. I expect subscribers to the "rock's rich tapestry" school of music journalism will chew each paragraph carefully, digesting chapter after stolid chapter of recording-studio gossip, archival cut-n-paste and reminiscences of [...]
Reads like he phoned in half of this book - or a conversation with someone in the pub telling you about people with mental problems in British rock. Not many fresh insights and I'm not really sure what point he's getting at with putting this together. Don't suppose there is one, other than making a few quid. Still, in its defence it provided some Mojo-esque distraction for a few hours.
I spotted this in the library. I have read quite a few musician biographies.I found this book rather annoying in the very idea it poses. That creativity and inventiveness are close neighbours to eccentricity and silly behaviour is hardly news. That wealthy superstars are over-indulged with too much down-time to fill is familiar ground. Is it jolly-japes or stupidity?This short quote sums up the whole "In the period 1974-78, Keith Moon, David Bowie, Marc Bolan, Peter Green and John Lennon would a [...]
How much were the classic rock albums from the 1960's and 1970's based on the composers flirtation with 'madness', drug-induced or not?Heylin is, as ever, highly opinionated but this makes you love (or hate) his books. All the recognised casualties of British rock are present and (in)correct.The narrative flows on a chronological basis headed by an introductory chapter on some of the more left-field psychiatric thoughts of the 1970's, and tailed by an Appendix which places the book's themes in a [...]
A fascinating insight in to the ups and downs of many bands and singers and how that affected them mentally.Particularly enjoyed the sections regarding David Bowie, The Kinks and The Who.
Rock ‘n’ roll is supposed to be a little insane. Those of us who enjoy reading about the history of rock ‘n’ roll from the 1950’s to today, are well versed in the crazy antics of its practioners – stories of crazed insanity that too many of us use to define the rock ‘n’ roll spirit and dream. Who hasn’t heard stories of The Who’s drummer, Keith Moon, also known as Moon the Loon? From destroying hotel rooms to driving a car into a hotel pool, his antics are legendary, but then [...]
~Interesting perspective about English rock, the people involved, and the obsession with "madness"~provided me with an insight to new music/new artistse first of them being Nick Drake and his album "Pink Moon"~makes me question whether or not mental illness is an inherent part of being "artistic"s strange to think that most of the people who have been considered great musicians, artists, poets, etc. have dealt with a period in their life where their sanity was questioned. Perhaps it is the highl [...]
This was a fascinating book to read even though it seemed to peter out at the end as if the author wasn’t quite sure where to go next. The book’s title comes from a pre-Ziggy song and Heylin’s book is about British rock’s fascination with mental illness and it was often created by those who suffered from it. This was one of rock’s more interesting phases and the book covers the period 1967-75.Heylin also explores the use of drugs such as LSD and cannabis and the negative effects it can [...]
An interesting read. Clinton Heylin discusses a number of sixties artists and their struggle with mental illness (often worsened through drug use), which basically works as a brief, if slightly subjective, description of their personal lives and musical careers from 1968 on, using sanity as a thematic thread throughout. Subjects include Syd Barrett, Pete Townshend, Nick Drake, Peter Green, Ray Davies and David Bowie, among others. Arbitrarily quitting his treatise in 1974 is slightly puzzling, t [...]
Enjoyable if inessentialHaving read many biographies of David Bowie; a Kinks biography; a Nick Drake biography; and numerous Mojo magazine articles on Pink Floyd, Syd Barrett, Peter Green, and The Who, I came to this book reasonably well informed about the artists under discussion. Clinton Heylin links these artists in terms of their relationship with mental illness. It's a reasonable enough jumping off point for an exploration into their key works. Clinton Heylin is opinionated and, whilst I di [...]
This was a idea in search of a book. Whilst it was an enjoyable read I got the impression that the author had come up with the idea and then struggled to find enough evidence to prove the thesis (basically that there were people out there producing good music with mental health issues). It's debatable that Bowies's 'madness' was anything other than an artistic pose, whilst other 'manic' behaviour seemed more self inflicted through drugs and drink (step forward Pete Townsend, Syd Barrett, Peter G [...]
With the Beatles and the stones off the road. The "British invasion" was grinding to a halt. To get the train back on the rails A new wave of thoughtful Progressives emerged . The more psychedelically infused sounds of pink Floyd and David Bowie. With the eccentricity of Ray Davies and Pete Townsend,s "concept albums". The pressing Question for the people paying for all the studio time. Is it any good? or just drug induced self indulgence? The answer depended on which album you focus on. Which m [...]
A good read focussing on a few major figures of the late 60s / early 70s British rock fundament. Some familiar situations here, but charmingly the author doesn't hold back on his personal opinions. For example, Roger Waters doesn't exactly come out well here. But then, he rarely does.I'm not sure I got any big insights from this book, but it was definitely worth reading. There's a little appendix on medieval "madness music" was actually pretty interesting.
Anyone who has read Clinton would know that he is never short of an opinion and this sometimes can be a pain but his devotion to music and meticulous research always shines through his writing. He weaves this magic tale here through the late sixties and early seventies in UK rock with occasional side tracks across many decades and centuries and topics. Very enjoyable.
Rambles along concentrating on a few madmen. A sad little story. However some good music came out of it all.A short appendix covers the history of mad artists in English history which is rather good. Would that this was expanded to book length!thanks to City of London libraries
This book was read by Sports teacher Lee Spieght as part of the Six Book Challenge. Here is his review:"Ok book, a bit of a throw-away read which focused on some interesting characters from music. A bit too much research often made it hard to read for all but the biggest of fans."
An interesting tapestry exploring the inner, outer, musical and non-musical lives of mentally troubled souls from around 1968-1975. The musicians focused on are Ray Davies, Pete Townshend, Nick Drake, David Bowie and Syd Barrett.
A very insightful read into several different bands, however the ending was a bit empty. Thoroughly enjoyed it anyway!
No, really, a 5. Very thorough, never dull.
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