Thursday, July 28, 2011

Blue Smoke is a winner

Blue Smoke, Chris Bourke's fantastic book on our musical history, won The Book Of The Year prize last night. Congratulations! See Kiwi musical history takes top award... 

"Blue Smoke: The Lost Dawn of New Zealand Popular Music 1918-1964 by Chris Bourke won the 2011 New Zealand Post Book of the Year last night. The Wellington writer picked up $15,000 for the work, which he largely wrote during the year he spent as Writer in Residence at Waikato University in 2008.

... New Zealand Post Book Awards judge Charmaine Pountney said Bourke had interviewed many key figures in the country's early music scene in researching his subject.

"It is a book about music and musicians, many of whom Bourke has interviewed himself, drawing out anecdotes that enrich our understanding of our nation's cultural development."

The awards' convener of judges, Paul Diamond, described the winning work as "a magnificent book" that had revealed a hidden social history of New Zealand.

"Blue Smoke tells us about ourselves, our music, and the way we take things from overseas."

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