Review: Rock ‘n’ Roll Gentleman – Zoë Howe.

You know when life gets busy and good books get dragged out? It’s a bit of a bummer, but alas, you get through them eventually…

I love Howe’s books, I really do. I feel like they kind of immerse you in the appropriate era, set the scene, whether it’s gentlemanly dress or outright anarchy (I’m looking at her Jesus and Mary Chain book, here). And I like that. When it comes to music, so few can do that this well; there’s often a leaning of being the fan against presenting an honest and full picture.

See I knew about Lee Brilleaux, I knew about Dr Feelgood, but in the grand scheme of classics, and those who died before their time, he’s been outshone by many in that respect and I’d never delved into his full story.

From his childhood and forming the band, to their heyday, the vast line-up changes and feuds, this just puts you right there. Zoë paints the most vivid of pictures of everyone in the most pleasing way. I did not get teary eyed at the last line, I swear. The point is I’m kind of glad this was my full introduction to the ins and outs of Lee, because it’s been told exceedingly well, and it hooks you in.

But seriously, had this been any other time of the year, I would have inhaled this book in a day or two. It’s so well written, such a joy for music fans, and brings you right into the world of Lee Brilleaux, told by those who knew him best, and written by someone who is honestly one of the finest music writers in finding the essence and heart of the icon.


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