Today I went to the third book launch I've been to this year. It's only March and last year I didn't get invited to any book launches, so this is rather extraordinary to say the least.
This one was held at the 100 Club in Oxford Street and was the launch of Simon Frith (et al)'s 'The History of Live Music in the UK, Volume 1: 1950-1961 (Ashgate). Simon Frithnis an extremely accessible academic writer, probably because he used to be a rock journalist, and has championed research on the live music industry for many years from his eyrie in Edinburgh. This is an expensive book, but it's bound to appear in paperback soon, and I know it will be good.
There was a live jazz band swinging its way through lunchtime and an audience made up of academics, journalists and promoters, many of whom had been interviewed for the book. My PhD supervisor, the author Dave Laing, was there, and Stevie Wonder's tour manager Keith Harris. I talked to a venue promoter from Sheffield and his partner who was the official photographer for the event, and we hovered at the bar eating sandwiches and dropping bits of them on to the floor.
Simon Frith was delighted to stand on the stage at the club, he said, having never had the chance to perform there himself.