A biographic book about Japan is in the making. The first batch of books are financed through Kickstarter and you’ll have your name written on your autographed copy and then, months after, it will be published by Burning Shed.
Since the project is closed on Kickstarter, because it has been fulfilled the aim to raise at least 5000£, you can still submit paying directly the writer Anthony Reynolds.
You can go to this Facebook page for more informations and to have fresh news about how the interviews are going.
Here you can find a little chat I had with the man about him and about this book which I think it will be a great one!
Chain D.L.K.: From your biography I read that you were part of a band called Jack that lasted ten years and signed for Beggars Banquet. Can you tell to our readers something about you as musician?
Anthony: I was in a band, called Jack for most of my twenties. I also had an off shoot project called ‘Jacques’. We did OK, touring a lot and selling a few hundred thousand albums. Five albums all together, 92- 2002. More of a critical success than a commercial one. I’ve been making albums since under my own name and am in the middle of my second solo album right now.
Chain D.L.K.: Does being a musician helped you for making better questions when you interviewed people or into organizing your books?
Anthony: I do think my experience of the industry, studios, touring, press and more importantly composing, performing and song writing gives me a unique angle when dealing with musicians for biographies, for obvious reasons. I guess its rare too, to have a writer who has made albums so it gives the books a unique insight.
Chain D.L.K.: What have been the highlights of the process of writing your previous biographies about The Walker Brothers, Jeff Buckley and Leonard Cohen?
Anthony: I’m a fan of music and how its made and it happens to deepen my appreciation of the music when I go into its creation. I’m well aware that this isn’t the case for many ; they prefer to keep the mystery. When I was very young I lived in one room that was infested by rats. They started off being very shy but eventually they got bolder. It ended up, before the exterminator came (who, incidentally looked like a cat, I remember) that I had photographic lights shining on my bed at night but they were still climbing over it. I was scared to sleep, so to stayed awake (this was before drugs) all night. I remember reading the ‘complete Beatles recording sessions’ and this started off my love for the subject. Regarding my previous books, a highlight was meeting Leonard Cohen.
Chain D.L.K.: What convinced you to write a biography about Japan?
Anthony: Writing a book about Japan has been at the back of my mind since I was a teenager. But it was almost too close to home to consider seriously. Then I thought ‘Why not’? It was so obvious I hadn’t seen it. In a way, I hope it will ‘cure’ me of my obsession with them. A kind of auto therapy. No sign of that yet, though.
Chain D.L.K.: Why founding it using Kickstarter?
Anthony: Japan are a niche band. Neither my agent nor a publisher were interested in the idea. I decided I’d rather spend a year writing about Japan for a small amount of money than I would two years writing about Tom Jones for a lot of money – and I like Tom Jones.
Chain D.L.K.: You started six months ago to gather interviews and stuff… how’s your “to do list” now?
Anthony: I’ve found almost everyone I’ve looked for. There are a few people- slightly obscure- Richard Chadwick, Jane shorter etc. that I’d like to speak with. I’m saving David till last. But I’m doubtful he’ll concede.
Chain D.L.K.: Is there a plot you’re following?
Anthony: A Plot? I’m just finding out the story as its revealed to me. The onus is on the music though, not the personalities and private lives. Although these come across by default.
Chain D.L.K.: Are the band members contributing and what do they think about a biography about their band that disbanded 30 years ago?
Anthony: Rob Dean, Richard Barbieri and Steve Jansen have all been incredibly kind and thorough in their input. And patient. I can’t speak for them but I sense they are glad to put across their side of the story with a writer who has some sort of understanding and empathy.
Chain D.L.K.: Are you going to cover a little their solo careers?
Anthony: This book- hopefully the first of two- Covers 1974-1984. It touches on everything they did within that time frame, as a band and as individuals.