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Lost in Music

3.81  ·  Rating Details ·  333 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
'If you have ever watched a band play or bought a pop record you should read this book' John Peel
Paperback, 256 pages
Published November 10th 2000 by Picador USA (first published January 1st 1987)
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(showing 1-30)
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the modisher
Oct 10, 2016 the modisher rated it liked it
3.5 ☆
Alex Sarll
Thrust on me by a friend when he heard I was getting into the Cleaners from Venus, of whom Smith was a member during their closest approach to fame (which is to say, the dizzy heights of an abortive deal with RCA Germany). I was amused to see Cleaner in chief Martin Newell described as recalling Fagin circa 1985, it being a reference point for which I had independently reached after seeing a couple of recent shows. Generally, the sections about Smith's own time in bands were the ones which grabb ...more
Jun 16, 2014 Nigeyb rated it liked it
Enjoyable, if dated, memoir by a music obsessive

This is the second book I have read by a member of The Cleaners From Venus in the space of a few weeks. Following on from the excellent "This Little Ziggy" by Martin Newell, I was keen to read this book (which covers completely different territory).

It's a very enjoyable read. A combination of personal memoir, the confessions of a pop music obsessive, and the diary of a failed pop star. I suspect it was inspired by Nick Hornby's Fever Pitch and adop
Julio Reyes
May 20, 2016 Julio Reyes rated it really liked it
Fan o músico. El espejismo más cruel del rock es hacer(nos) creer que todos podemos ser músicos. Smith aprende que ambos son incompatibles, pero que lo más divertido es seguir soñando.
Tracey Sinclair
Aug 22, 2016 Tracey Sinclair rated it really liked it
Enjoyable, very much in the Nick Hornby vein.
Dec 19, 2014 Tim rated it really liked it
Shelves: music, memoir, england
This was a charming book, and I would gladly recommend it to any of the following: serious pop/rock music fans with big record collections, big fans of English pop music, and fans of any of the following artists: Stevie Wonder, XTC, Nik Kershaw, 10cc, and especially The Cleaners From Venus. Smith was, for a couple of years, an actual member of the Cleaners, and eventually moved on from the chaotic life of the struggling pop musician to the presumably more comfortable days of a music journalist. ...more
Aug 17, 2015 Ronald rated it really liked it
"This book is a one man's journey into the world of rock and then back to his mum's." Giles Smith, een Britse journalist, vertelt over het opgroeien met popmuziek in de 70ies en 80ies. Over hoe pop zijn leven binnenkwam, hoe pop zijn leven ging beheersen en hoe hij, ten slotte, het plan opvatte om Sting te worden. (Dat plan ging niet door).

Ik denk niet dat ik al een grappiger boek over muziek heb gelezen. Vaak luid gelachen! Smith bewondert en bespot artiesten, altijd als een gentleman, en hij
Any book whose back cover soundbite reviews exhort me to "laugh out loud" tends to strenthen my resolve not to, but I did exhale a few chuckles here.

Despite it being very different, in emphasis and structure, to Nick Hornby's '31 Songs', I can't help but compare them. And there were a few moments that felt a bit, er, familiar, which doesn't reflect well on Hornby, his musical memoir being written nearly a decade after Smith's. But I put this down to their being of a similar age and thus the same
David Manns
Dec 09, 2012 David Manns rated it liked it
Shelves: music, autobiography
Giles Smith is a fan of pop music, who, like many self-respecting fans had dreams of pop stardom. This book details his obsession with pop music and his brief flirtation with the music industry as a member of the Cleaners From Venus.

The Cleaners operated at the arse-end of the music biz in the late 80's, managed by two young Scots chancers and briefly signed to RCA. In Germany. Smith recounts his trials and tribulations with the band, interspersed with anecdotes about his love of pop and the st
Feb 02, 2016 Pulp rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enamorarse del pop hasta las últimas consecuencias. De esto va este libro, de perderse entre miles de canciones, intérpretes y biografías hasta conformar una obsesión que moldea para siempre tu personalidad. Las andanzas de Giles Smith resultan gratas para cualquiera que haya añadido kilometraje a su vida por medio de horas pasadas en tiendas de discos y armado de compilaciones desde una grabadora en soledad para personas que están allá afuera en centros nocturnos donde transcurren ruidos sin al ...more
Aug 21, 2012 Laura rated it it was ok
I found myself really wanting to enjoy this book, but skimming a lot of pages instead. It was just too much like Smith'd written down his inner chats for his own enjoyment without consideration for the enjoyment of the reader. His book read like the stories i create in my head to fill in slow moments; you know the ones when we re-live our past like we're telling it to an interviewer. But i don't need to turn this inner story telling into a book to know they are mainly only of interest to me and ...more
Nov 21, 2014 Bookhuw rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
A pleasing enough little book about pop music and the obsessive tendencies it inspires. It captures well that period in adolescence where every few weeks you seem to come across an album the likes of which you've never heard before, how "every time you bought a single, the world seemed to change shape", reminding me of my first listens to the likes of In Bloom, Misty Mountain Hop or Da Funk. Other memories of lifts in cars listening to tapes through treble heavy speakers, with any bass long havi ...more
Aug 30, 2011 Matt rated it liked it
Well written and the chapters are on average four pages long, so it's easy reading.

Worth noting it was published 1995 contemporary to High Fidelity.

I have to compare this to Mark Steel's [Book: Reasons To Be Cheerful] because I bought them second-hand at the same time (at Amazon's recommendation). Both are charming autobiographies of youth set against greater events (politics and pop) and naive but unfaltering determination to influence them, ultimately debriefed by an older cynical self.
Matti Karjalainen
Giles Smithin humoristinen muistelmateos "Lost in Music" käsittelee kirjailijan musiikkiriippuvuutta, joka ilmenee muun muassa pakkomielteisenä suhtautumisena XTC-yhtyeeseen sekä vilpittömänä uskona siihen, että oma bändi tulee vielä jonakin päivänä breikkaamaan kunnolla. Suositellaan niille, jotka pitvät Nick Hornbyn kulttiromaanista Uskollinen äänentoisto.
Jan 15, 2010 Ipswichblade rated it really liked it
Giles Smith is a superb sportswriter and I have read both his books of sports articles and his current writing in the Times. This is slightly different as its his life story in music. Giles clearly was on the cusp of stardom with his group but it just didn't quite happen. He claims in the book that he gets around 32p twice a year from royalties. This book also covers his joy of record buying and the whole area of vinyl and CD. All in all a nice easy read
Robert Anderson
Mar 07, 2015 Robert Anderson rated it it was amazing
This is a hilarious, unfailingly candid account of a lifelong obsession with pop music with a tragicomic conclusion- Giles is above all a pop fan, not a real pop star. But he's a wonderfully gifted, insightful writer whose chequered pop career got him into some extraordinarily funny situations! By the end you may even want to track down some Cleaners from Venus albums...
Apr 25, 2009 Edward rated it really liked it
The funniest music book I've read. Captures the absurd, geeky joy of rock fandom with an intimate precision that can only come from deep personal experience. If you enjoyed "High Fidelity" (the book, not the movie), you'll adore this.
Oct 05, 2015 Emma rated it it was amazing
Super funny, especially the chapter on Pink Floyd. Couldn't resist reading sections aloud to the hubby. The sheer love of music comes through in every chapter, and as for Nik (or is it Nick)Kershaw...
May 12, 2008 Godzilla rated it liked it
Shelves: biographies, music, 2008
I did enjoy this book - the musical references resonated so deeply with me

But I was left feeling that I'd not had the full story. It was very readable, but left me wanting more. Sometimes a good thing, but not in this instance, for me personally
Carlos Úbeda
Nov 16, 2014 Carlos Úbeda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Un repaso a la vida del aficionado al pop cargado de ironía y con el que es difícil no sentirse identificado. Poco ambicioso y muy disfrutable.
Jul 22, 2012 Helena rated it it was amazing
Read it and laugh out loud! Essential reading for those whose pop muic addiction spanned the 70s and 80s.
Dec 02, 2009 Pjtibbetts rated it really liked it
If you liked High Fidelity, you'll dig this as well.
Apr 16, 2007 Frangipani rated it really liked it
Shelves: music
This book reminded me of a lot of my friends and their university days. A nice fun read. The author has a great sense of humour.
Kevin Coaker
Aug 17, 2014 Kevin Coaker rated it did not like it
Dated but still interesting. Just not amusing, and a tad ripping off Fever Pitch and High Fidelity.
Jun 28, 2015 Antonomasia marked it as varying-degrees-of-interest
As recommended by Louise Wener in Guardian article on best music books
Also a zillion other interesting things in comments.
Jonathan Dennis
Oct 28, 2012 Jonathan Dennis rated it it was ok
Read his other stuff instead.
Jan 03, 2016 Snilbert rated it really liked it
3.5 stars
Richard Watt
Richard Watt rated it really liked it
Mar 02, 2012
Allan Azulbotón
Allan Azulbotón rated it really liked it
Mar 31, 2014
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