Syd Kitchen: Scars That Shine

Donvé Lee
Tracey McDonald Publishers, Johannesburg, South Africa 2017 | ISBN 978-0-620-70993-4

cover
Front cover photograph © Miguel Capelo

Syd Kitchen (1951-2011) was a South African singer-songwriter, guitarist and poet. He made a contribution to the Johnny Boy Would Love This tribute album by covering Fine Lines – one of the last musical adventures of his life. His biography Scars That Shine appeared six years later. Author Donvé Lee had promised Syd to write his life's story many years before he passed away. But she only got around doing it after his death. So we have a rather unique document here: a biography that sounds like an autobiography. Thanks to extensive research Donvé pulled it off: "It's not often you come across an autobiography that isn’t written by the subject, but Lee went out on a creative limb and, writing in first person, succeeded in capturing Syd in his own voice".

The almost final chapter is dedicated to the John Martyn tribute project and is reproduced here with permission of the author. The book got excellent reviews and is for sale on Amazon as an e-book. It is well worth a read, as there are many similarities between John's career and Syd's.

Background Interview

John Neil Munro
Unpublished

This is a transcription of a cassette tape from an interview conducted in the Bay Horse pub in Glasgow. It was used for the biography Some People Are Crazy by John Neil Munro so some quotes may sound familiar. John was interviewed several times; this occasion was after the release of On The Cobbles (April 2004) and before the concert in the Royal Concert Hall of 10 May 2004.

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