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Wrote For Luck

Shaun Ryder

30 of Shaun Ryder’s lyrics with commentary by the ‘Salford Dylan’ collected for the first time.

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In the mid-1980s the Happy Mondays emerged as the prime mischief makers on the Madchester scene. Chief protagonist was Shaun Ryder, a man whose lyrical street swagger in songs like Kinky Afro, 24 Hour Party People and Performance, would come to define a generation. Here, collected and edited for the first time, in trade and special editions, are his unforgettable lyrics with commentary by the man himself and an introduction by his literary collaborator, Luke Bainbridge.

With characteristic understatement, Tony Wilson once compared Shaun William Ryder’s lyrics to the poetry of W. B. Yeats. That is, if W. B. Yeats had been an inveterate drug-taker and occasional dealer, a compatriot of criminals and crazies, an aficionado of low life and high times; if he had painted artful sketches of endless parties and urban blight, of chancers, dead beats, fanatics and, always, an endless stream of pharmaceuticals; if W. B. Yeats had composed fractured, hilarious, grubby and shrewdly observed anthems for the Madchester generation. That W. B. Yeats: Shaun William Ryder.

Critic Reviews

Unique, hilarious, vicious, oddly logical, Ryder’s lyrics are all his own.

Miranda Sawyer, Observer
Critic Reviews

A small gem [ ... ] candid and frequently hilarious.

Q 4****
Critic Reviews

There is great fun, if not insight, to be had by reading through words that Ryder himself confesses are 'oddball captions'. A reflexive lyricist who speaks to the underdog and the hungover, Ryder’s mixture of pop culture, catchphrases (“call the cops!”), drug experiences and oddball characters dovetail into a litany of alt.literature that is (almost) as fun reading as singing along to. What adds to the scanning are Ryder’s contextualised explanations, which are occasionally just as amusing.

Irish Times
Critic Reviews

A reminder of Shaun Ryder’s singular talent, his ability to turn life on the margins into chart success and – despite his protestations – the depth and breadth of his dark poetic vision.

The Quietus
Critic Reviews

Adds up to a rich and at times arresting portrait both of the man himself and of the 1980s Manchester scene from which he emerged.

The Spectator
Critic Reviews

The Beats make for quite an apt comparison with the Mondays. Cultural significance, improvisational qualities, outsider status and, yes, the drugs.

Concrete Islands

Shaun Ryder is lyricist and singer in Happy Mondays and Black Grape, and author of the bestselling memoir, Twisting My Melon.

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