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How NOT to Make It in the Pop World (diary of an almost has-been) Paperback


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Trafford Publishing (July 6, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1412014131
  • ISBN-13: 978-1412014137
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.8 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,280,755 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
Who?

Exactly!

John Barrow is living proof that you can survive the dizzying heights and live the dream of near successes of being a pop idol, long before the days of our pop idol began. Whilst we struggled through the daily grind and general drudgery of life, he was rubbing shoulders with the stars on Top of the Pops (ToTP), signing with Independent Labels, mingling with the holy grail of all DJ's - John Peel, and attending roadshows. Pop heaven. In fact, for a (very short) while he was rich, famous and loved by all - especially women! Feted and fawned over like royalty. The Singing Lorries, I mean, The Swinging Laurels even appeared on Cheggers Plays Pop! Oh yes, for a while he had all the trappings that came with success, but never quite made it.

Beneath the glamour and glitz, however, far from his singing with a hairbrush days, his life was filled with broken promises, hidden expenses, breaches of contracts and even frosty looks from "her indoors" (the wife). Not to mention angry Scottish Nationaists, bunny boilers, false pregnancies, long hours of traveling and strange beds. Need I go on? I would have thought this would have been enough to send him running in the other direction, even if it was just for the sake of his sanity. But no, through thick and thin, Mr Barrow stuck it out to the bitter end.

Humour aside, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It's fun and entertaining, and really does show how hard one works in the cut throat world of the music business.

Things not to say to John Barrow, No.1: "Hey! I saw you on telly. I bet you're rolling in it!"

Sassy Brit
Alternative-Read
October 2007
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Format: Paperback
I am pleased to have worked with Johnny B many years ago and he is just a musician to the core. You can tell that every beat throbs in his heart and his passion is everything musical..the book runs along like the metronome on my old piano, absolutely perfect timing but with a touch of sadness as I hit the wrong note on the keys. A delight, a must read for the musical minded with a dream of the larger stage. Me, well I walked into the corporate world in the U.S. and have to face the out of tune consequences of life. Johnny B had it better even if he didn't.
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Format: Paperback
This book was easy to put down, but I don't mean this in a harsh way. As I read the book it was very easy to picture John in my living room talking. As I finished a chapter, I'd put it down and ramble through my memories of similar scenes. Much like a discussion was taking place. Small things, like the descriptions of `dressing rooms' and `rehearsal spaces'.

John was active in the live music arena during the same years I was - the only difference is most of his experiences were in England, with some in Europe, whereas mine were stateside - mostly in California. I knew the music of and/or reputations of 85% of the bands he mentioned in the book. The band he was/is most remembered for is The Swinging Laurels - a group that had some press over here, but I cannot recall if I ever heard them. No matter, he could say the same about the bands I was with.

But the stories of the clubs, the club owners, the reality of the pay for performing in venues, the truth of being the "opening band" for a `major' artist, the escapades of a band, the thefts that took place of band equipment, other people's perceptions of your wealth once you've been on TV, etc, etc, etc. John brings the truths of a band on the road to life for all of the thousands upon thousands of bands that perform, record, perform, record, perform.

Every one of those guys were like John and I - gave up the chance for a secure future for a dream. But we would have never become who we are if we had not pursued the dream. I have friends who stuck with corporate life - one guy in particular makes me realize how good it was that I didn't do that - 1 1/2 years away from retirement they "laid" him off.
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