Tracey Thorn’s account of her years as half of the band Everything but the girl, Bedsit disco queen, has been praised as both an enjoyable, honest memoir and a fascinating journey through British music from punk to the mid-2000s. It is both, but it is also possible to read as a guide to a creative career, in this case in music. I’m going to review it as that.
Thorn started with a punk ethos of, we can do this ourselves. In 1980, her first band the Stern Bops provided a track to a compilation cassette sold for £1.50 through a couple of local record shops and an NME small ad; she recalls going to a tape copying facility in London to get more run off. The chapter is titled ‘DIY’.
Thorn and her partner Ben Watts formed the band Everything but the girl in 1982 at Hull University and continued until 2000. Despite this, she describes being a singer as “a job I wasn’t really cut out for” – she feels more comfortable writing and recording, and suffers periodically from stage fright. She uses this distance at some points of the book to assess pop music as a career option. Continue reading “Review: Bedsit disco queen, Tracey Thorn’s creative career advice book”