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New Guildford Rock ‘n’ Roll Book Club Features the Vapors

Published on: 15 Apr, 2024
Updated on: 17 Apr, 2024

The Guildford Rock ‘n’ Roll Book Club meets for the first time on Wednesday, May 15, at the Keep pub in Castle Street with author Mike Philpott talking about his book, Times Gonna Make Me A Man Someday: Trailing The Vapors.

Mike Philpott with his book.

It’s the story of how Mike’s childhood obsession grew and was fed in 1979 by Guildford band the Vapors

They would, for evermore, be his standout band. They entered his life both musically and also in terms of friendship and belonging. That exists to this day around the band’s members, their families and friends, and their fans worldwide.

The title of the book derives its title from a Vapors lyric. In it the group’s history is traced from start to the present: from Guildford pubs to TV’s Top of the Pops and the band’s international hit Turning Japanese.

Cover of the sleeve for the Vapors’ single Turning Japanese.

Although the Vapors broke up 1981, after 35 years of inactivity the band reformed in 2016.

At the book club event Mike Philpott will be in conversation with John Warburton, writer broadcaster, composer, record producer and senior lecturer in music and film at the University of Surrey.

The original Vapors line up.

Original Vapors drummer Howard Smith will be recalling the band’s rise – from rehearsing above his dad’s launderette in Stoke Road, Guildford, playing in front of about 20 people at Godalming College, to the band’s appearance on Top of the Pops and playing at the Whisky a Go Go club in Los Angeles.

Ben Darnton of Ben’s Collectors Records shop will also be along with some special vinyl records and memories.

The Guildford Rock ‘n’ Roll Book Club has been set up by music fan Graham Andrews. He said: “I am keen to start a music book club in Guildford along the lines of the rock ‘n’ roll book clubs in Walthamstow and Camden and the Louder Than Words festival in Manchester. The club will feature author interviews, time for questions and answers, signings and music.”

The evening begins at 7.30pm. Tickets and entry is £4. Advance tickets can be bought here.

Click here for more details. 


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