Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Jon Savage wins 2016 Penderyn music book prize

Veteran music writer wins award for 1966: The Year The Decade Exploded, a social history of the year and the songs that defined it

Jon Savage
‘It’s not just a fad but a way of life’ ... Jon Savage Photograph: ©Emyr Young
Fifty years after the year which is its subject, 1966: The Year The Decade Exploded has won the 2016 Penderyn music book prize for author Jon Savage.

A veteran music writer, Savage made his name writing about the early years of punk for fanzines and the national music press, before moving on to writing books in 1991 with England’s Dreaming, still widely considered to be the definitive history of punk rock. 25 years later, Savage combines pop writing with broader cultural history in 1966. Looking at some of the year’s game-changing music, from Tom Jones to the Beatles, Savage writes about how the songs were inflected by the era’s wider events, including Vietnam, drugs and the birth of popular feminism. Reviewing it for the Guardian, Bob Stanley wrote: “This is not only fine pop writing, but social history of a high order.”

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