Aaaargh! authors on radio

Charles Shaar Murray’s ‘Guide to the Blues’ kicks off the new season of Madam Miaow’s Culture Lounge, hosted by Anna Chen, on Resonance 104.4FM, Tuesday 4 March, 5pm-6pm – just as the new collection of Murray’s journalism — Shots From the Hip — first published in 1991, with a new introduction by Joel Nathan Rosen and a new afterword by CSM himself, is published by Aaaargh! Press.

The book puts together Murray’s writing on music and much, much more from the 1970s and 1980s in New Musical Express and elsewhere, edited and introduced by Neil Spencer. It shows just why Murray acquired the reputation of being the most intelligent and acerbic popular music critic of his generation.

CSM starts a summer course of his Hothouse Project “Journalism as Craft And Art” writing masterclasses in West Hampstead — eight Thursday evenings from 29 May to 17 July. Book now!

His ‘Guide to the Blues’, kicking off the new season of Madam Miaow’s Culture Lounge on Resonance 104.4FM, can be found here.

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Shots-web-very-smallShots From the Hip by Charles Shaar Murray has just been published as a Kindle e-book. It’s available from Amazon here.

First published in 1991, it is a collection of Murray’s legendary journalism on music and much, much more from the 1970s and 1980s in New Musical Express and elsewhere. The Guardian described Murray as ‘one of the best British writers on pop music, and this is a compilation of HIS best’ – and it’s published here with a new introduction by Joel Nathan Rosen and a new afterword by CSM himself.

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Moscow Gold? makes splash

Aaaargh! Press’s latest title, Moscow Gold? The Soviet Union and the British left by Paul Anderson and Kevin Davey is selling like warm buns on Amazon since its release as an e-book last month. Here are the latest stats:

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New book: Moscow Gold?

MG-web-ver-smallThe latest book from Aaaargh! Press is Moscow Gold? The Soviet Union and the British left by Paul Anderson and Kevin Davey, now available only as an e-book on Kindle but soon in paperback.

‘A fine little book you can read in a day. Anderson and Davey have taken advantage of the vast amount of research into communism since the end of the cold war. They wear it lightly, and refreshingly, are open about their political position. As members of the democratic left, they believe that communism was a disaster for left wing politics. It tied the left to tyranny and the lies and disillusion that went with it.’ NICK COHEN


It is nearly a quarter-century since the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the Soviet Union has not existed since 1991. No one under the age of 40 has more than childhood memories of communist rule in what was once the Soviet bloc. So why bother about the Soviet Union and the British left now?

The main reason is that it is a fascinating story in itself. But it also matters today. It is impossible to understand the left in Britain now unless you get to grips with the historical left’s myriad relationships with Bolshevism from the overthrow of the Tsar in March 1917 to the dissolution of the Soviet Union in December 1991.

For three-quarters of a century, the different strands of the left in Britain (as elsewhere in the world) defined themselves to an extraordinary extent by reference to the Bolsheviks and the regime they established. And many of the battle lines drawn then still survive, albeit much modified…

This pamphlet is not an attempt to tell the story of the global impact of the Russian revolution. It is focused specifically on Britain. It is not an academic monograph, and it is not primarily a history of the Communist Party of Great Britain. It is a popular overview, BBC History-style, an attempt to tell the big story of the relationship of the whole British left to the Soviet Union since 1917, dealing as much with the non-communist left and critics of the Soviet Union as with the CPGB or the fellow-travellers.’

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Wilko likes Anna’s poems

Music legend Wilko Johnson gives the thumbs up to Aaaargh! Press’s first title, Reaching for my Gnu, when he calls Anna Chen’s collection of poetry, “Fuckin’ great”.

That’s some endorsement coming from our cultural hero. Love you, man.

Recorded Tuesday 22 January 2013 at Wilko’s house in Southend.

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