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Bedsit Disco Queen: How I Grew Up and Tried to Be a Pop Star Hardcover – March 15, 2013

4.7 out of 5 stars 37 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"[Tracey] Thorn is a gifted memoirist. Her writing is spare and to the point, but with an added intelligence and sense of humor that reads more like a charming best friend than an anti-establishment rock star." — Bust.com

"Entertaining and informative. . ."  —The Barnes & Noble Review

"A charmingly frank, wryly funny, and surprisingly pragmatic account of [Tracey Thorn's] life and remarkable career . . . It's about self-discovery and love, and will be an inspiration for quiet girls everywhere to pick up guitars."  —Bitch

"Thorn's literary voice is as cheekily offbeat as her singing voice is rich and mellifluous."  —Time.com

"A really good book."  —Huffington Post

"A witty and charming chronicle of a career full of happy accidents and success found in the least likely of places." —Gawker.com

"[A] lovely, funny memoir." —NewYorker.com

About the Author

Tracey Thorn was the singer and songwriter with Everything But the Girl from 1982 to 2000. She has since recorded several solo albums.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Virago UK; Reprint edition (March 15, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844088669
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844088669
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #707,549 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Awesome read especially if you are a EBTG fan. Loved to read about what I'd always wondered about. Do you own the cross-pollination artists which EBTG were a part of? How about the Smiths/Style Council/Go-Betweens/Apartments/Prefab Sprout--Tracey knew and knows them all. I'd always sought this "sound" and these are some of the very people with whom EBTG shard their evolutions. I find it odd that Tracey assumes she was an "almost Pop Star". I would say she is an authentic POP star, the best kind. Ones that do not self destruct but find themselves at a place in their careers where they can actually pen a book and let us in on the ride, instead of some sad obit where we have to hope it all meant more than rhymes and harmony. The pace is just right with her lyric placed at chapter's end to give depth to what was happening in their lives at the time. I've been listening to the whole EBTG catalog and even picked up Tracey's Christmas CD to complete it all. I guess the last 30 years of my own life are woven within the notes and tones of EBTG. A life lived along with such gifted artists is a life well lived indeed. I'm grateful to Tracey and Ben--Our Blue Moon Roses.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Well, we knew Tracey Thorn could write based on her lyrics. But what she's even better at is telling a story. The era of EBTG is sort of liminal -- on the edge of a couple of things rather than central to the late 20th century. Thorn charts this era so well. For a fan like me, it was great to learn all the background to each album and mutation of EBTG's sound. And to hear about Thorn's development as a person and and artist. And she doesn't show us only her best profile. You get a sense of Thorn as a articulate and exacting artist -- who can be a little self-centered at times, and on rare occasion, a bit whiney. Most musical artists are guilty of some narcissism -- their medium and source is themselves, rather than say a painter who uses paint and canvas as media and (usually but not always) paints something other than herself. So, the pop star's self-regard is forgivable, especially since such great, great music, such great art has resulted.
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I discovered EBTG quite by accident when a friend brought this girl from France over to my house. There was lots of partying going on (it was 1986) and she slipped in this cassette and we were all transported to another place. It was a duo named Everything But The Girl and the Album was Eden. It became my new obsession, this band no one had ever heard of. So off I went to this store where you could order CD's from Europe and ordered the 4 releases that existed at this point ending with Baby The Stars Shine Bright. I've been a HUGE fan ever since. Not too many years later they were known in the states and I had the chance to see them live in Santa Barbara. What a treat. Tracy’s voice touches my soul in a way that makes me want to weep and shout for joy all at the same time.

So it was with great anticipation that i picked up this book that I just finished. I LOVED it! I'm so completely uncool that I had no idea of this trend where punk style bands segued into cool jazzy type sound. Who knew? Well apparently all my cool DJ friends did. And to think of her as a teenager ‘doing her thing’ while I, a year or two older, thought of Punk as raunchy no rhythm noise. Yes, I know better now. My only complaint is not finding out the inspiration behind all of the songs from those early albums. But the tidbits in there were priceless to me. For me EBTG was the most important musical influence throughout my 20's and 30's. I still play those records in my 50’s as much as anything else I play. Thank you Tracey for sharing your story, so grateful you wrote this. For me it was mesmerizing and I didn't want it to end.

A funny side note.
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I'm not exactly sure how it would read for someone who didn't discover EBTG around the beginning of career, but for those who did this book captures the time period so well and answers the little questions American fans may have had back then. It's nice to see the songs contextualized by Tracey and Ben's lives. It feels a lot like a great EBTG album in that it's inspirational from that DIY standpoint, post-punk and thought provoking without being gratingly confrontational. Her writing and revelations are generous without ever being salacious. Lots of good music geek-dom with an almost Nick Hornby quality describing English confidence/accomplishment/brilliance coupled with humiliation, a sort of embarrassment from the profile of their work and the humanizing elements of daily life compounded by the surreality of a public artist's life. I'd highly recommend it!
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A creative couple. They created so much together-a life, romance, songs/music and a family. And they tried to do it their way.
I was led to this book by their song I heard many years ago on the radio-I Miss You Like the Deserts Miss the Rain. Never forgot the song. I then saw some of their videos on You tube-along with some of their albums. Very intriguing people.
I don't know that much about music or the music scene, but this is also the story of two honest and creative people.
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