30 years on the road with Motörhead and some of the most notorious rock bands EVER
In this rollicking rockumentary, I tell the story of my life on the road with some of the greatest rock bands in history. Most people have an idea what such a life must be like—a whirlwind of sex, stimulants and swanking about, a trail of drug busts and blocked toilets in the wake of a tour bus on a highway to hell. It’s only when you’ve lived it, however, that you realise how far even the wilder imaginings fall short of a reality, which is in fact unimaginable and for the most part utterly unbelievable…
I was a teenage punk from rural Lancashire when Elvis Costello and the Attractions played Preston Guild Hall inn the late 1970s. I told a little lie to get backstage and set in motion a chain of events that led to my becoming the first female rock band tour-manager in the world—and without getting into bed with any male impresarios.
I sat down to write this as a memoir with a triple-A pass. Thanks to my renunciation of alcohol and drugs, I recall in vivid detail the agonies and excesses of travelling with some of the most notorious acts in rock ’n’ roll—including Motörhead, Chumbawamba, Hawkwind and Black Sabbath—on gruelling tours that test the strongest wills, the greatest friendships and the bitterest rivalries to the limit.
In the course of these no-holds-barred recollections, roadies are attacked by drunken drummers, rooms are filled with bin-liners of cash, bottoms are scorched in outrageous backstage games, a drug-filled flight case is trundled out onto the stage, a lone tour bus skids its way along a deserted autobahn and the mafia demand the handover of merchandise...
Amidst the hilarity and hysteria, I recall the loneliness and frustrations of life on the road. Swearing off stimulants, my failed marriages, and how I finally left the music industry, having reached the top of my profession to spend more time with my daughter and to encourage other women to do what I did: not surrender their ambitions in spite of the obstacles present in a world where equality is, though nearer, still unreached.
Mine is the story of a woman in a man’s world. But crucially, it’s the story of a woman being a woman in a man’s world—at least being the woman that I wanted to be. I had no interest in being one of the boys, let alone proving it. I’d wear designer shoes instead of steel toe-caps, freshly-painted nail varnish instead of tattoos and carried a Tiffany pen instead of an Allen key in my pocket.
In thirty years of working with some of the biggest names in rock ’n’ roll, including Blondie, The Damned, Uriah Heep, Michael Jackson, Status Quo, Right Said Fred, Robbie Williams, the Rolling Stones, David Bowie and Madonna (who I had to throw offstage in Los Angeles), I never ran, never shouted, never gave in and never gave up.
These reminiscences are filled with tales of music and madness, egos and escapades, divas and decadence, substance abuse and sex. Of scotching stereotypes, of not giving a damn and deciding what really matters—all to a soundtrack playing at 11.
About the Book
- 320 pages
- B format, 198 x 129mm
- 60 images
- Black and white
I hate heavy metal. I can’t stand to listen to it.
I can’t play an instrument or read a note of music.
I can’t sing.
I’m not from a musical family.
I grew up in a small farming village in Lancashire.
I’d only been to London once.
So how, with all these non-qualifications, did I end up sleeping under Lemmy?
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These people are helping to fund Confessions of a Female Tour Manager.