A History of Manchester Music in 13 Recordings

Paul Hanley’s book Leave The Capital refashions the history of Manchester music. He tells his story by plotting through 13 key recordings that helped shape the city and its music. These are the recordings. Click above to listen on Spotify or YouTube. Click here for more details on the book.

Leave the Capital: A History of Manchester Music in 13 Recordings.

‘Look Through Any Window’
The Hollies

‘Bus Stop’
The Hollies

‘No Milk Today’
Herman’s Hermits

‘East West’
Herman’s Hermits

‘A Groovy Kind Of Love’
The Mindbenders

‘Matchstalk Men and Matchstalk Cats and Dogs’
Brian and Michael

‘I’m Not In Love’
10cc

‘Everybody’s Happy Nowadays’
Buzzcocks

Unknown Pleasures
Joy Division

‘Bankrobber’
The Clash

Perverted By Language
The Fall

The Smiths
The Smiths

‘So Young’
The Stone Roses

Published in November 2017.

Click here to pre-order an advance signed and numbered edition.
Advance copies will be despatched prior to publication.

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New Title | Trouble In Mind

Trouble In Mind: Bob Dylan’s Gospel Years – What Really Happened
by Clinton Heylin

‘When I get involved in something, I get totally involved. I don’t just play around on the fringes.’ – Bob Dylan

In 1979 there was… trouble in mind, and trouble in store for the ever-iconoclastic Dylan. But unlike in 1965-66, the artifactal afterglow – three albums in three years, Slow Train Coming, Saved and Shot of Love – barely reflected the explosion of faith and inspiration. One has to look elsewhere, and in Trouble In Mind, Clinton Heylin has; connecting the dots on the man’s gospel years by drawing on a wealth of new information, newly-found recordings and new interviews. His primary goal? To make the case for a wholesale re-evaluation of the music Bob Dylan produced in these inspiring times.

‘The only Dylanologist worth reading.’ – New York Times

Trouble In Mind is the perfect accompaniment to the forthcoming gospel years bootleg series. Get yourself ready. The book is published 30 October 2017. Pre-orders will be shipped in advance of publication date. Be among the first to read it. Click here to pre-order an advance signed copy.

| See page for JUDAS! by Clinton Heylin |

 

New Title – Leave The Capital

New book by Paul Hanley refashions the history of Manchester music

Route is delighted to announce the acquisition of the debut book by legendary drummer Paul Hanley. His book, Leave The Capital, refashions the history of Manchester music and looks beyond the big bang theory of everything starting at the infamous Sex Pistols gigs at the Free Trade Hall. If that was the single catalyst, then why didn’t every other city the Sex Pistols play make such a significant response? Hanley argues that it was the existence of two top class recording studios in Manchester that made the difference: Strawberry and Pluto. To be able to record in their home town gave musicians the wherewithal to express themselves free from the shackles of the London-centric, music industry taste-police.

Hanley’s story gives credit where it’s due to the overlooked pioneers of Manchester music, and how Manchester made a much bigger contribution to the sixties’ ‘British Invasion’ than is generally acknowledged; Manchester bands were often lumped in with their contemporaries from Merseyside. Hanley illustrates that without the endeavours of Wayne Fontana and The Mindbenders or Herman’s Hermits, there would never have been an Unknown Pleasures.

Route editor Ian Daley said of the acquisition, ‘There are many reasons why we love this book. It is a refreshing expansion of the Manchester music story, told with authority by someone who played his part in shaping its history. Paul’s passion for music and his home city pour off of every page, but this isn’t just a story of Manchester. It’s also an important account of how free cultural expression was wrestled from the stranglehold of the entertainment corporations in our capital city and how that inspired the development of new independent cultural industries in the North, a continuum that Route is very much a part of.’

***

When British bands took the world by storm in the mid-sixties, the world turned and looked at London. Despite the fact that the most successful of these bands hailed from the North West corner of England, for the USA, London was the source of these thrilling new sounds. And in many ways it was – The Beatles, The Hollies and Herman’s Hermits recorded all their hits with London-based producers, for London-based companies in London studios. And that’s how it remained, until four Mancunian musicians became alive to the possibility of recording away from the capital.

Against the prevailing wisdom, they opted to plough their hard-earned cash back into the city they loved in the form of proper recording facilities. Eric Stewart of The Mindbenders and songwriter extraordinaire Graham Gouldman created Strawberry Studios; Keith Hopwood and Derek Leckenby of Herman’s Hermits crafted Pluto. Between them they gave Manchester a voice, and facilitated a musical revolution that would be defined by its rejection of the capital.

This book tells the story of Manchester music through the prism of the two studios’ key recordings. Of course that story inevitably takes in The Smiths, Joy Division, The Fall and The Stone Roses. But it’s equally the story of ‘Bus Stop’ and ‘East West’ and ‘I’m Not in Love’. It’s the story of the Manchester attitude of L.S. Lowry, by way of Brian and Michael, and how that attitude rubbed off on The Clash and Neil Sedaka. Above all, it’s the story of music that couldn’t have been made anywhere else but Manchester.

***

Paul Hanley was the drummer in Manchester legends The Fall from 1980-85 and now plays with Brix & The Extricated.  He’s currently completing his English degree with the Open University and occasionally writes for Louder Than War. He’s married with three children and once got 21 on Ken Bruce’s ‘Popmaster’.

 

 Leave The Capital will be published in November 2017.

Click here to pre-order an advance signed and numbered edition. Advance copies will be despatched in advance of publication.

An Evening With Ramon

Ramón Chao talks about his adventure in Colombia with Mano Negra at the book launch of The Train of Ice and Fire. In Spanish with English subtitles. Originally published on a now defunct video server, we’ve decided it’s high time it came back online.

Colombia, November 1993: a reconstructed old passenger train is carrying one hundred musicians, acrobats and artists on a daring adventure through the heart of a country soaked in violence. Leading this crusade of hope is Manu Chao with his band Mano Negra.

Manu’s father Ramón Chao is on board to chronicle the journey. As the papa of the train, he endures personal discomfort, internal strife, derailments, stowaways, disease, guerrillas and paramilitaries. When the train arrives in Aracataca, the real-life Macondo of ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’, Mano Negra disintegrates, leaving Manu to pick up the pieces with those determined to see this once-in-a-lifetime adventure through to the end.

The Train of Fice and Fire

Click here for more on The Train of Ice and Fire.