A dual memoir written in tandem by Mike Heron, a founder member of the iconic sixties folk group The Incredible String Band and one of their greatest fans, bestselling author and winner of the Saltire Prize, Andrew Greig.
'Mike Heron, as part of the Incredible String Band, changed the way I looked at music. Read it!' Billy Connolly
'Mike Heron's lyrics always sparkled with wit and warmth and his prose is a delightful continuation. The book evokes a smoky, unheated eccentric Edinburgh that was a crucible for so much creativity.' Joe Boyd, author of White Bicycles
This singular book offers two harmonising memoirs of music making in the 1960s. Mike Heron for the first time writes vividly of his formative years in dour, Presbyterian Edinburgh. Armed with a love of Buddy Holly, Fats Domino and Hungarian folk music, he plays in school cloakrooms, graduates to rock, discovers the joy of a folk audience, starts writing songs, tries to talk to girls, wishes he was a Beatnik all while training as a reluctant accountant. When asked to join Robin Williamson and Clive Palmer, the Incredible String Band are formed - and their wildly innovative, astounding music became indelibly linked with the latter Sixties.
Andrew Greig was a frustrated provincial schoolboy when he heard their songs. It changed everything. Undaunted by a lack of experience and ability, he formed a band in their image. Fate & Ferret populated back-country Fife with Pan, nymphs and Apollo, met the String Band and caught the fish lorry to London to hang around Joe Boyd's Witchseason office, watching at the fringes of the blooming Underground scene. It was forty years later that he and Mike became friends.
These entwined stories will delight anyone who has loved the Incredible String Band; and their differing portraits of that hopeful, erratic and stubborn stumble towards the life that is ours will strike a chord with everyone.
Mike Heron, as part of the Incredible String Band, changed the way I looked at music. Read it! - Billy Connolly
Mike Heron's lyrics always sparkled with wit and warmth and his prose is a delightful continuation. The book evokes a smoky, unheated eccentric Edinburgh that was a crucible for so much creativity. - Joe Boyd, author of White Bicycles
It is now a commonplace to say that most exciting new writing comes from north of the Border. If further proof were needed, Greig provides it - The Times
There is little doubt he is one of Scotland's major writers - New Statesman
If you have a desire to luxuriate in the most beautiful use of the English language borne along by the love of one gifted poet for a recognized master of melancholy, then this is the book for you. It most certainly is the book for me - Billy Connolly, on At the Loch of the Green Corrie
Praised by Paul McCartney and Robert Plant, Mike Heron, born in Edinburgh, was a founder member of the Incredible String Band. As a solo artist he has worked with John Cale, Pete Townshend and Keith Moon. He is still writing and performing music, touring regularly with a host of musicians including his daughter Georgia and Trembling Bells.