As Years Go By
With the news that Marianne Faithfull has moved into a retirement home, Nick Dent-Robinson reflects on the growing amount of ageing rock stars.
With the realisation that his favourite artist Cliff Richard may never tour again,Bob Nicholson looks back on some of the highlights in his lengthy career.
Nick Dent-Robinson assesses Oliver Murray's nostalgic documentary, which now available on DVD, is a film biography of Rolling Stones founding member and bass player Bill Wyman
Nick Dent-Robinson pays personal tribute to Gary Brooker, the frontman with Procol Harum, who died in February.
Andrew Môn Hughes, Grant Walters and Mark Crohan
Lisa Torem examines a new book 'The Bee Gees in the 1960s’ which examines their early career.
Lisa Torem is impressed with Laura Shenton's well-researched and informative book about progressive rock band Curved Air's early history in the 1970s.
Our writers and photographers reveal their albums of the year.
How Music Journalism Can Fight Misogyny
In light of Marilyn Manson's downfall, Cila Warncke asks what music journalism can do to fight misogyny.
Anthony Dhanendran finds fascinating Mike Hipple's new book 'Lived Through That: 90s Musicians Today' in which he talks to and photographs an assortment of 90's indie musicians.
In the first of two articles on the new Beatles documentary 'Get Back', Nick Dent-Robinson finds astonishing its previously unseen footage and enjoys its evocation of a Britain and the world that has now disappeared.
Lisa Torem, in the second of two articles on the Beatles' new epic documentary, that you’d be wise to watch Get Back,’ where the Beatles exhibit patience and utter genius.
Richard H. Kirk
Denzil Watson pays personal tribute to Cabaret Voltaire frontman Richard H. Kirk, who died unexpectedly in September.
Julie Cruickshank pays tribute to Status Quo's original bassist and co-founder Alan Lancaster who died in September.
Fiona Hutchings finds that Baxter Dury's new memoir about his childhood and father Ian Dury promises but does not fully deliver
Nicky Crewe finds that Tanya Pearson's new book is a fascinating insight into Marianne Faithfull’s life and career by a writer who isn’t afraid to bring her own experience to the exploration of the myth and reality of Faithfull’s story and legacy.
Lee "Scratch" Perry
Maarten Schiethart looks back on the life and career of Jamaican producer and musician Lee "Scratch" Perry who died in August.
Nick Dent-Robinson pays tribute to Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts who died on August 24th.
We preview the next Pennyblackmusic Bands Night which will take place with Idiot Son, Morton Valence, The Volunteered and Simon Bromide at The Water Rats in London on the 29th January 2022.
Aztec Camera’s five albums for the WEA label are being compiled in a massive nine disc box set 'Backwards and Forwards', with four discs of extras! But even though he enjoys it, Tommy Gunnarsson misses their amazing debut album, 'High Land, Hard Rain'.
Lucy in the Sky....
Nick Dent-Robinson gives a thumbs-up to Annie Nightingale’s ‘Hey Hi Hello’ – a 'rewarding read' which includes 'fascinating back-stories spanning her five decades of interaction with the biggest names in music and culture.'
Blues and Gospel Train
Neil Swift investigates the groundbreaking, one-off Granada TV showcase 'Blues and Gospel Train'.
Adrian Janes examines Swedish academic Per Nilsen's new book which provides a gig-by-gig account of The Stooges' chaotic career.
John Clarkson examines Nashville-based singer-songwriter and author Doug Hoekstra's haunting new collection of short stories.
Michael Stuart Ware
Nicky Crewe reviews Michael Stuart Ware’s must-read for fans of Love and their music, written by one who was there and who has lived to tell the tale with insight and understanding.
Kimberly Bright examines The Lewes Ripple, a community of musicians from the small town of Lewes in Sussex, who after a planned week-long multi-venue festival was cancelled there due to the pandemic, have set up an inventive YouTube channel to promote their music.
Folk/Country/Americana in Liverpool
Steve Kinrade profiles the growing Folk/Country/Americana scene in his native Liverpool.
Bob Nicholson reflects on the parallels and contrasts between the careers of original rock and rollers Cliff Richard and Elvis Presley.
Attila the Stockbroker
Fiona Hutchings generally finds poetry a bit hit or miss and now she has Attila The Stockbroker in her sights.
Nicky Crewe finds that the eagerly anticipated memoir from Fairport Convention co-founder Richard Thompson is a beautifully written and evocative reminder of a memorable time in his life.
Nicky Crewe reads this rollicking tale of The Limit, the legendary Sheffield club.
Including discs which have been out of print for some time, a new six CD set of Somerset singer-songwriter Reg Meuross’s output from 1996 until 2013 brings all of his work together. Malcolm Carter reviews.
Pennyblackmusic is proud to premiere the video for 'Wintertime', the third single single from Nashville-based singer-songwriter and writer Doug Hoekstra's forthcoming first album in ten years, 'The Day Deserved'.
Production Crew Confront Covid
Last April Cila Warncke for an article at Pennyblackmusic spoke to several people who worked in production and behind the scenes in music about the devastating impact that the Coronavirus crisis was starting to have on them. A year on she revisits them and others in the same situation to find out where they are now.
Nicky Crewe pays tribute to her friend and Pennyblackmusic writer Keith How who died unexpectedly in January.
Pennyblackmusic is proud to premiere the video for 'Put Me On The Television', the debut single from Edinburgh-based singer-songwriter Stephen McLaren's forthcoming dream-pop second album 'They Don’t Put Any Money in Your Pocket'.
Nicky Crewe finds that Andrew Wild's new book in Sonicbond Publishing’s 'On Track' series is a definitive guide to Crosby, Stills and Nash not forgetting Neil Young’s contributions.
Nick Dent-Robinson reflects on the career of Gerry Marsden, the frontman of the record-breaking 1960s Mersey Sound band, Gerry and the Pacemakers, who died in January.
Nick Assirati sets out to make the music of The Clash accessible to newcomers and/or younger fans. Fiona Hutchings investigates whether he succeeds.
Malcolm Carter examines 'Songlife', a new vinyl box set from 1960's pop/psychedelic act Nirvana, which combines five albums plus a previously unreleased musical.
Recorded during their longest ever tour, a reissue of 1988 concert film The Delicate Sound of Thunder sees Pink Floyd attempting to adapt their pioneering psych/ prog rock for a new generation. Richard Lewis reviews
Our writers and photographers list their favourite albums of the year.
Maarten Schiethart highlights some of his favourite 7 inch and 12 inch releases of the year.
Bob Nicholson explores the misguided perspective that rock icon Cliff Richard is ‘risk adverse’.
Chicago-raised rap artist, Common, lays bare his spiritual growth in his sophomore book, ‘Let Love Have the Last Word’ in 'Raging Pages'.
Maarten Schiethart reflects upon the life of pioneering reggae artist Toots Hibbert, who died in September.
Keith How finds Georg Purvis' account of Pink Floyd’s history through the 1970s not only fascinating but a compulsive read even for a know it all fan!
Alison O' Donnell
Malcolm Carter examines folk legend Alison O'Donnell's two new digital releases, a compilation of her 50-year career in music and a new set of songs with Head South By Weaving.
Dixie Ernill examines the career of under-rated Richmond, Virginia indie-pop band The Silent Boys.
Nick Dent-Robinson assesses Bruce Springsteen's extraordinary latest album, 'Letter to You'.
Dastardly finds the second LP from Dublin 5-piece Fontaines D.C. splices hypnotic lyrics with rhythmic driving passion
Philamonjoro reflects on short-lived but influential Chicago music venue Tuts in its 40th anniversary year.
Returning with the second volume of a three-part autobiography, John Howard takes Ben Howarth and John Clarkson on a compelling guided tour of the fringes of the late-70s, early 80s music industry, while also navigating an increasingly complex personal life in the shadow of the Aids crisis.
Nicky Crewe reflects on the life of her friend, Mancunian musician, writer and Alberto Y Los Trios Paranoias frontman CP Lee, who died in July.
The news that Q magazine was closing this year after a 34-year run due to Covid-19 sent shock waves through the music community. Ex Q editorial assistant Cila Warncke talks to other former work colleagues about their fond memories of the influential magazine.
Tommy Gunnarson examines two new albums by former Young Marble Giants mastermind Stuart Moxham, the first of which 'Interior Windows' is a compilation of unreleased recordings by his project the Gist, and the second 'The Devil Laughs' on which he has teamed up with Louis Philippe once again.
Thirty albums in, Fairport Convention finally get a book dedicated to every song on every album. Tommy Gunnarsson is impressed.