Friday, 19 October 2012

hell bent for leather - seb hunter

I picked up 'Hell Bent For Leather' in the local Oxfam shop last saturday, and it was an enjoyable enough read, as a lot of the bands that are referenced in the book, l know from when l was into Metal/Rock (a lot more than l am now).  This is the story of Seb(astian) Hunter, who discovers music (AC/DC) and guitars, plays in bands around Winchester, and then leaves for the bright lights of London to make it big, and have all of his rock and roll dreams come true. It doesn't happen of course, and he eventually becomes an author, but along his individual path of knowledge there are treaties on guitars, band logos, metal bands and how to look cool while playing in metal bands.  That is, until Glam Rock (the 1980's version) comes along and he is swept up with the Dogs D'Amour look and attitude, until Nirvana and Indie come along to kill the scene and force him to reconsider his musical outlook.  I don't agree with some of his views on bands (Deep Purple and Status Quo used to be great in my eyes), but l enjoyed most of the book, as it was pretty self deprecating, and mostly spot on.  Memories of staying in squats, bumming about, and drinking in 'The Intrepid Fox' (when it was in Soho) and 'The Hellfire Club' were stirred, as l used to go to them myself, and many a mad night was had in them (Oh Yes!).  There was no mention of 'The Spice Of Life', which was also pretty popular around the time frame he is referencing, but l'll forgive him that.  For those of us that were in bands, wearing hats and bangles, dreaming of stardom, and loving Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, The Rolling Stones etc, parts of this rang way too true and close to the bone. I even met the FPO when l was into Hanoi Rocks and wearing a hat with a scarf around it. The only trouble now, is she can still fit into my old tour t shirts.  My father was also a sarcastic alcoholic (now dead), but in the school of hard knocks l inhabited, there were no guitars or pianos around the house, no trips to buy guitars, and certainly no rides to concerts or offers to manage the band. Despite all of this, it was purely my lack of talent that prevented me being a star, no matter where l came from. Still, better to try and fail than not bother and regret it later (he says bitterly).

toodle pip

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