The Sound of Being Human
‘Too often we treat popular music as wallpaper surrounding us as we live our lives. Jude Rogers shows the emotional and cerebral heft such music can have. It’s a personal journey which becomes universal. Fascinating’
‘Moving and absorbing, The Sound of Being Human mixes memoir, analysis, anecdote and personal chronicle into a mosaic that evokes what music means to the individual and the human tribe. A candid, beautiful read’
The Sound of Being Human explores, in detail, why music plays such a deep-rooted role in so many lives, from before we are born to our last days. At its heart is Jude’s own story: how songs helped her wrestle with the grief of losing her father at age five; concoct her own sense of self as a lonely adolescent; sky-rocket her relationships, both real and imagined, in the flushes of early womanhood, propel her own journey into working life, adulthood and parenthood, and look to the future.
Shaped around twelve songs, ranging from ABBA’s ‘Super Trouper’ to Neneh Cherry’s ‘Buffalo Stance’, Kraftwerk’s ‘Radioactivity’ to Martha Reeves and the Vandellas’ ‘Heat Wave’, the book combines memoir and historical, scientific and cultural enquiry to show how music can shape different versions of ourselves; how we rely upon music for comfort, for epiphanies, and for sexual and physical connection; how we grow with songs, and songs grow inside us, helping us come to terms with grief, getting older and powerful memories. It is about music’s power to help us tell our own stories, whatever they are, and make them sing.
Too often we treat popular music as wallpaper surrounding us as we live our lives. Jude Rogers shows the emotional and cerebral heft such music can have. It's a personal journey which becomes universal. Fascinating -- Ian Rankin A stunning hybrid of memoir and music, soundtracking the indelible nature of sound. Rogers' moving, lyrical sentences sing and stop you in your tracks -- Sinead Gleeson I absolutely loved this book. It's a fabulously moving memoir, gorgeous and unique, and beautifully written - tender, funny, nostalgic and insightful, elegantly revealing so much about the power of music. It's given me a completely new take on the songs I have loved in my life and why I love them. What a joy. * Ruth Jones * Moving and absorbing, The Sound Of Being Human mixes memoir, analysis, anecdote and personal chronicle into a mosaic that evokes what music means to the individual and the human tribe. A candid, beautiful read -- Stuart Maconie I've not read a warmer, deeper or truer evocation of the intense and unique connection between person and song. In untangling her own life, Jude Rogers helped me understand mine. This book is truly beautiful -- David Whitehouse A beautifully written memoir of love, loss and the ways in which music can move us in unseen ways. Jude is a rare talent -- Sirin Kale Jude Rogers is one of our very finest music writers, and The Sound of Being Human shows us exactly why: tender, whip-smart, passionate and meticulous. All music fans will relish this book -- Laura Barton There are books that have made me cry and books that have taught me about the psychological effects of music, but Jude's is the only one that has done both. It's a wonderful thing - real food for the heart and head. A book that lots of people will treasure -- Mat Osman Jude Rogers is one of my favourite writers and one of my favourite people. Having been interviewed by her many times I'm always bowled over by her constant passion for music, new and old, and the way she can take you to a time and a place in a few words. This is a beautiful memoir about how music can shape your life, sometimes change your life, and I defy anyone not to have a little cry along the way -- Sarah Cracknell Both heavy and light, dark and sweet - I very much like this book -- Kristin Hersh Evocative, intelligent and touching. So brilliant on that rush you get from the music that shapes, describes, soundtracks & changes your life. I love Jude's writing and her power to conjure the emotions you felt when you first heard a certain song -- Mhairi McFarlane Personal but universal, The Sound Of Being Human is a moving, funny and very smart exploration of what music does to you and how it does it -- Alexis Petridis Tracing the relationship between music, memory and emotions - Jude Rogers has created a finespun weave of heartfelt memoir, keen insights into the inner workings of pop music, merging into mind-expanding chunks of science. An absorbing and poignant book -- Philip Clark A beautifully written book offering fresh insight into the way the mind processes music as well as giving a glimpse into Jude's own life as a writer, mother and broadcaster -- Ralph Moore, Mixmag magazine/Worldwide FM Jude Rogers takes on one of the most intriguing questions of all: how some songs come to mean so much to us, curling themselves around our memories of that blissful summer or bleak winter. As I read this warm and honest book, I realised its true subject is not pop music, not really. It is rather an exploration of love - how it is formed and maintained, and what it leaves behind -- Aditya Chakrabortty, Senior Commentator, the Guardian A brilliantly unjaded exploration of the power of songs to intoxicate, enthuse and reassure * Guardian * Fascinating read, which, far from reducing music, enriches it * Mojo * A moving meander through Rogers' musical memories * Big Issue * Her writing brims with the lively, engaged intelligence of someone who lives in her material * Record Collector *
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