6 Must-Read Music Biographies + Bob Dylan is awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature

by |October 14, 2016

bobBob Dylan awarded Noble Prize for Literature

He’s the iconic American singer-songwriter that is the voice of a generation, and overnight Bob Dylan can now add the Nobel Prize in Literature to his long list of accolades.

The first musician to win the award and the face of the 60’s hippie movement, Dylan’s distinctive voice and writing style will be studied for generations for its historical relevance. In a media conference, Sara Danius, Permanent Secretary of the Nobel Academy said the committee had great unity in choosing Dylan for “having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.”

It is however, not without controversy. As this article is being written, Twitter is erupting in debate over whether the legend is worthy of having this recognition;  concerns have arisen as to whether this will open the door for more musicians to win the recognition traditionally saved for authors and poets.

Dylan is as yet to comment on the award.

What are your thoughts? Should the Noble Prize for Literature be awarded only to authors of the written word?

Learn more about Bob Dylan’s biography, Bob Dylan The Lyrics: 1961-2012


jimmy-barnesJimmy Barnes Still Selling Steady

“The one thing about life is, we all have our stories but this a common story, we’re all just trying to survive. We’re all getting through it the best we can” – Jimmy Barnes

Three weeks after its release, Jimmy Barnes’ autobiography Working Class Boy continues to be a top seller across the country, with over 30,000 copies sold across the country and continuing to rise.

Adored by all who have read it, Working Class Boy, which is only part one of his story, has dominated charts and has outsold Bruce Springsteen’s Born To Run.

Part two is due to be released for Christmas next year and is still currently being written.

Learn more about Working Class Boy; listen to Jimmy Barnes chat about writing this memoir


Wouldn’t It Be Nice To Know The Beach Boys Story?

They say there are two sides to every story and with two former members of The Beach Boys releasing their respective autobiographies this month, fans everywhere may find themselves divided over the band they love.

In one corner, we have Mr Beach Boys himself – Brian Wilson with his self-titled autobiography I Am Brian Wilson – a deeply resounding insight into his derailment during a battle with mental illness, drugs and life as a Beach Boy with a complex legacy. It’s told with the grace and hindsight of someone who has healed with time.

In the other, we have Mike Love with Good Vibrations: My Life As A Beach Boy who tells the tale of the legendary band and the glamour and glitz of leading a movement and changing the surfing world.

Two very different takes on one very definitive time and band. Both are must-reads for the fans of music royalty.


eltonElton John’s autobiography to be released in 2019

Big news out of New York overnight, with the announcement of book publisher Pan Macmillan and its sister company, Henry Holt, acquiring Sir Elton John’s one and only official autobiography for worldwide release in 2019.

The yet to be titled book will be written by Sir Elton John and music critic Alexis Petridis.

Elton John said: “I’m not prone to being a nostalgic person. I’m often accused of only looking forward to my next gig or creative project. It’s come as quite a surprise how cathartic I am finding the process of writing my memoirs. As I look back, I realise what a crazy life I have had the extreme privilege of living.  I have grown up in a period of extraordinary change in our world – and have had the joyful honour of rubbing shoulders and working with so many of the people at the heart of these changes. My life has been one helluva rollercoaster ride and it’s still lumbering on. I hope readers will enjoy the ride too.”


phil-collinsPhil Collins Is Not Dead Yet

Less than a year after a failed petition was circulated to stop Phil Collins coming out of retirement, the music icon has found another day in paradise; in less than two weeks he’ll add author to his many titles.

As one of only three recording artists in history to sell over 100 million albums as both a solo artist and a member of a band, the book will explore his life – giving great insight into his 40 year music career with both Genesis and as a solo artist.

Due to be released October 31st, Collins’ autobiography Not Dead Yet has been years in the making. “Several times over the last few years I have been asked to write a biography but never felt that the time was right – until now. Having found the right publisher in Penguin Random House, I am ready to go on record about my life in music, with all the highs and all the lows, and to tell the story from my point of view – warts and all!”

Learn more about Not Dead Yet


October is Booktoberfest at Booktopia, and when you order any of the titles in this post by October 31st (except for Elton John’s yet to be released autobiography), you’ll go into the draw to win a non-fiction prize pack worth $1000! And if you order any book from the Booktoberfest showcase,  you’ll go into the draw to win a year’s supply of books. That’s a $50 gift voucher every week – for an entire year!

booktoberfest-blog-banner-generalAnd that’s not all.

To celebrate such a huge week of music in literature, we have a playlist featuring the above music icons. Listen for FREE here:

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About the Contributor

Emily is Booktopia's resident eBook Merchandiser and music nerd. Obsessed with all things Harry Potter, dogs, biographical and digital; she occasionally talks too much and worked in customer service in a previous Booktopian life. When she's not obsessing over one of her many loves, she's out taking photos or trying to write self-deprecatingly witty things.

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