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Positively George Street Paperback

3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 207 pages
  • Publisher: Reed New Zealand
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0790007045
  • ISBN-13: 978-0790007045
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,951,484 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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As an earlier review of this book suggests, yes, it IS one musician's memoir of his own experiences, of his own band, in a particular time and place, all of which is accurately suggested by the subtitle, so it's a bit silly to expect it to be about anything else.

This is certainly not a book that the casual reader, or even casual music fan, will enjoy. That said, anyone interested in New Zealand independent music of the 1980's, particularly the Flying Nun Records scene that began in Dunedin, including such luminaries as The Verlaines and The Chills (and other bands who would go on to more international reknown than the Sneaky Feelings), will find this book a worthwhile read. There are the usual anecdotes about inter-band drama, road hijinks, and the general disappointments and struggles of an independent band trying to make it in a scene that had yet to celebrate music from New Zealand bands in general, let alone a handful of scrappy garage bands from the tiny south island town of Dunedin.

Bannister is an able writer, but I must confess I prefer his songs to his prose. However, until a more objective, comprehensive book is written, this book does offer some illuminating reading for those interested in the topic of New Zealand rock music.
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I love the work of Alistair Galbraith, The Renderers, Roy Montgomery, and The Dead C, and had high hopes for this book. Sadly, it doesn't live up to them or all the blurbs about how one won't read a better book about New Zealand music (perhaps because no one else has written one)... It just seems like a young man's meandering memories of his band, but it mostly covers his band and barely touches on their myriad encounters with other bands. Maybe, he could come out with another edition, and include more info about the other bands & less about The Sneaky Feelings!
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