Robert Forster first clapped eyes on Grant McLennan at university in 1976. He still remembers the three albums McLennan was carrying that day. His book Grant & I is the story of the adventures the two of them had in indie sensations The Go-Betweens as they graduated from Australia to Europe and the United States before Grant’s early death in 2006. It’s a brilliantly-observed account of what happens when a music lover turns musician, an insiders’ view of the absurdity of being alternately underrated and overrated and a unique story of a form of brotherhood that only exists in rock bands. Robert now performs in his own right and also writes about music. He has already published The 10 Rules of Rock & Roll.
As a child Armando Iannucci shared a bedroom with a brother who was into Lou Reed and Deep Purple. “I remember thinking, I don’t get this,” he writes in the introduction to his book Hear Me Out, which is in some ways “an act of defiance” in the face of those who think that anyone who isn’t listening to the hip new thing is letting the side down. What many of his contemporaries get from Radiohead and Oasis Armando gets from Mahler and Bartok. His book is a provocative, original and – as you’d expect from the creator of TV shows and films like Veep, Alan Partridge and The Thick Of It – funny argunent for the pleasure to be gained from listening to different things in a different way.