I have had Jonny Perkins kicking around for a while on my Facebook page, editor of his own Fanzine, (Also titled IN IT 4 THE CRACK), based in Wales. Jonny has been a band manager, promoter, dj, and most importantly, the man who brought Punk Rock to South Wales.
This new indie limited edition book, combines the story of this man, as well as a treasure trove of unseen clippings, posters, contracts and stories of the people the man himself has met.
This is not a work of an author, this is the work of a real honest man putting together his life in entertainment form, short, snappy bits of Information, relevant to the bands, the time, and the history of the venues in South Wales that Jonny used all make for memorable reading. No Waffle, just the facts as they happened. Starting off with Jonny's beginnings in the late 1960's hearing Pirate Radio and onto music becoming his passion, using many of his own personal photographs, instantly you feel the likeabillity of Perkins, as you chuckle with the story of getting his leg over with a married woman and having to hide in the wardrobe when they thought her husband came home and learning the lesson NOT to take the piss out of Teddy Boys at work. Well, this was the 1970's! He goes on to recount the big points in his life that shaped what was to come, from the birth of Skiffle music in the UK in the 1950's, taking in the Aberfan Disaster of 1966 in Wales. Where a waste tip slipped onto the nearby village of Aberfan, killing 144 People, 116 of them being children.
From a few local Welsh progressive rock bands. Jonny builds a company promoting bands, firstly putting on bands such as Kevin Ayres, the Pink Fairies, and managing the band, ALBERT, booking them in many gigs across the country in the big venues of the day. Then comes Jonny's time promoting Glam bands such as Slade, The Sweet, and more. Next is some photographs of rare fanzines of the day, which holds some bits of great interest to me importantly to the Sex Pistols. From their gig at Caerphilly's Castle Cinema in December 1976 (the one with the Hymn singing protesters outside, as seen in the "Great Rock n Roll Swindle" movie. A great poster for his gig promoting Cherry Vanilla and a great story from his show putting on our very own Punk Globe writer Jayne County back when she was with The Electric Chairs. Perkins is also the guy who gave The Police one of their first gigs.
Personally, I really like this book. It has just the facts, enough about the man behind it all, humour, drama, tragedy in some parts, but mainly it shows what a Rock N Roll fan can do to get involved. Jonny Perkins is the South Wales man who did, and he is as important to the music scene there as Malcolm McLaren was to Punk in London. Through all the hassles he has had to make this book come to fruition, he has now done it, and i for one am glad he did. Well Done Jonny!
If you are interested in the history of 1970s/ 1980's music. This is a book to get. It features stories and clippings you will not see anywhere else. Very essential indeed.