—Barry “The Baker” Auguste, Clash backline roadie, 1976-1983″Randal Doane’s take on this chapter in music history is unique because he spoke to a lot of people who were part of the wheel that rolled The Clash forward. This was a hungry young band with righteous anger at social injustice, and Randal captures the vibe that was so vital … ”
—DJ Meg Griffin, formerly at WNEW and WPIX, SiriusXM Radio
“With Stealing All Transmissions, Randal Doane documents with wit and verve how The Clash leapt from the Westway to the USA in 1979 with the help of rock journalists and key deejays in the States. It was an honor to work with The Clash back in the day, and a pleasure revisiting those days through this book. Doane’s passion for The Clash and their comrades resonates on every page of this dynamic read. Stealing’s a must have for Clashophiles on both sides of the Atlantic.”
—Dan Beck, former Senior VP at Epic Records
Stealing All Transmissions: A Secret History of The Clash (PM Press, October 2014, 192pp.)
Foreword by Barry “The Baker” Auguste, backline roadie for The Clash, 1976-83
Stealing All Transmissions is a love story. It’s the story of how The Clash fell in love with America, and how America loved them back. The romance commenced in 1977, when select rock journalists and deejays aided the band’s quest to depose the rock of indolence that dominated American airwaves. This history traces the rise of The Clash and the scene flourishing in New York at Max’s Kansas City and CBGB, and culminates with The Clash’s September 1979 performances at the Palladium in New York City. The September 21 concert was broadcast live on WNEW, and—for years—was believed to conclude with Paul Simonon treating his bass like a woodsman’s ax. The Clash’s next album, London Calling, which is considered one of the greatest rock albums ever, was graced with Pennie Smith’s photo of Simonon, which is regarded as the greatest rock photograph of all time. That night marked one of the last opportunities for fans to see The Clash as a punk band, teetering between conviction and uncertainty, before they became a seriously brilliant rock group.
Stealing is the first American history of The Clash. No other book gives proper attention to the forces of free-form radio, long-form rock journalism, or Clash bootleg recordings, many of which are now widely available on the web. Stealing takes its title from the 1981 single “Radio Clash” and includes original interviews with key figures from the New York punk scene, offers a brilliant reinterpretation of London Calling, and rewrites the history of Smith’s iconic image. This secret history concludes with an analysis of how we listen to music today and its impact on the written word.
Please contact the author @ randal dot doane [at] gmail.com for information about review copies in tablet form or paperback.