Books and Music at the Heart of Independent Publishing

Coming in October…John Peel

June 23, 2015 | by Faber Social

Tags: Viv Albertine, david cavanagh, john peel

He was the man who Jack White called ‘The most important DJ ever’. Elvis Costello described him as ‘a great man, a fabulous curmudgeon, he was as rare as the music he loved’. He was John Peel, and on October 1 2015 the publisher that brought you Clothes, Music, Boys, Girl In A Band and Yeah Yeah Yeah comes the man that brought you Nirvana, PJ Harvey and The Smiths.

Good Night and Good Riddance: How Thirty-Five Years of John Peel Helped to Shape Modern Britain by David Cavanagh is a social history, a diary of a nation’s changing culture, and an in-depth appraisal of one of our greatest broadcasters, a man who can legitimately be called the most influential figure in post-war British popular music.

Without the support of John Peel, it’s unlikely that innumerable artists – from David Bowie to Dizzee Rascal, Hawkwind to Happy Mondays – would have received national radio exposure. But Peel’s influence goes much deeper than this. Whether he was championing punk, reggae, jungle or grime, he had a unique relationship with his audience that was part taste-maker, part trusted friend.

The book focuses on some 300 shows between 1967 and 2004, giving a thorough overview of Peel’s broadcasting career and placing it in its cultural and social contexts. Peel comes alive for the reader, as do the key developments that kept him at the cutting edge – the changes in his tastes; the changes in his thinking. Just like a Peel show, Goodnight and Good Riddance is warm, informative and insightful, and wears its enthusiasm proudly.

David Cavanagh was a feature writer for Select and Q, and is the author of the acclaimed history of Creation Records My Magpie Eyes Are Hungry for the Prize.

We will be announcing pre-order details and some exciting events around publication shortly, so keep an eye out. In the meantime here’s another of the Faber Social family, Viv Albertine, in session for John Peel with The Slits in 1977. Take it away Viv…