‘Tommy Steele: A Life in the Spotlight. The Authorised Biography’ will be published on May 20th by Fonthill Media and be available to buy online and in bookstores – now the news has confirmed they’ll reopen soon! (Available to pre-order online now).
Coming in at over 400 pages with over 80 rare photographs, this is the first complete and authoritative career chronicle of Tommy’s amazing and incomparable 65 year stage and screen career. Every recording, film, show, concert is covered in in-depth detail which will delight fans, researchers, rockers and theatre-lovers young and old.
Authorised and approved by Sir Tommy, the book also features especially written Forewords by Sir Tim Rice and Elaine Paige OBE and Introductory Memory contributions from Petula Clark CBE, Dame Judi Dench and Hollywood star Lesley Ann Warren. I’ve also interviewed many of Tommy’s on-stage cast members and contemporaries to paint a full picture of Britain’s greatest showman and a true all-round entertainer.
After introducing live Rock ‘n’ Roll to England in 1956, he was later taught to dance by both Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire; directed by the likes of Francis Ford Coppola and Walt Disney; appearing more times than any other performer at the London Palladium and having the longest run in any show in the theatre’s history and also the Guinness World Record for the longest running one-man-show in the West End.
The chronological narrative takes the reader from Thomas Hicks’ leaving of the Merchant Navy to coffee bar success in Soho to overnight stardom introducing live ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll’ to England, via the West End, Hollywood, Broadway and Las Vegas, this book is the first complete, chronological and detailed account of his career as an actor, singer, dancer, sculptor, artist, author and county-level squash champion!
With countless anecdotes about all his famous songs, shows and films: such as ‘Rock with the Caveman,’ ‘Little White Bull,’ ‘Singing the Blues,’ and ‘Flash Bang Wallop!’
It also includes additional appendices of complete filmography, discography and a list of every single show and concert date Tommy has played over the last 65 years. Truly an exhaustive and exciting chronicle of the original Bermondsey Boy and Britain’s greatest showman.
The book will also have a companion release from Acrobat/Trapeze music label: a 3 CD set of ‘Hits, Live and Rare’ material of Tommy, with 90 tracks – over 50 of which have never been released on CD before, including some rare, classic, rock numbers which he never recorded on disc and have remained unheard for nearly 60 years. These come from my private archive, featuring new digital transfers from original off-air reels, demonstration recordings and rare singles and LPs.
Both the book and CD are landmark releases for the original “Boy from Bermondsey” – Sir Tommy Steele