This week I became a published author. To my delight, my biography of 1960s French icon Françoise Hardy hit the shelves on Monday.
The book, Catch a Rising Star, is a collaboration with respected music journalist Daniel Lesueur and has been two years in the making.
The whole thing was Daniel’s idea. He approached me to see if I would be interested in writing an English-language book about Hardy with him.
He knew me because I run Ready Steady Girls!, a website devoted to European female signers of the 1960s. I started it back in 2007 and steadily built up biographies for singers from the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain over the course of the next seven years.
I’ve always preferred female singers to males, and the music of that era is a passion of mine, so the website has been great fun to run. I’ve even had some of the singers featured on it get in touch over the years to thank me for featuring them.
I haven’t updated the site for a while now – not least because there aren’t many singers I haven’t written about.
Plus, I launched this blog in 2014 and for the first year I wrote a post a day. That didn’t leave much time to research and write. Or, indeed, anything. (I won’t do that again.)
“We’re waiting to see how sales of the book go. It’s been issued by independent publishers, but we’re hoping a larger publishing house will pick it up”
Since then, I have tended to post on here just once a week, which is far more manageable – and left me time to work with Daniel on the Françoise Hardy biography.
Hardy, as you may or may not know, rose to fame in 1962 with the self-penned Tous Les Garçons et Les Filles. It launched her career both at home and abroad – and even became a top 40 hit in the UK sung in French (a rare occurrence).
At home, the chanteuse scored hit after hit during the rest of the decade and into the 1970s. Here she is performing one of my favourites, 1968’s Comment Te Dire Adieu.
She enjoyed a comeback in the 1980s and has remained a grande dame of France’s music industry to this day. Her latest album, Personne d’Autre, was released just this year.
So, Daniel and I are now waiting to see how sales of the book go. It’s been issued by independent publishers InfoDisc, but we’re hoping a larger publishing house will pick it up.
Whether that happens or not, I’m just pleased that all my hard work is now seeing the light of day.