A celebratory and beautiful mixture of memoir, social history and cultural observation, Paul Morley's The North is a unique portrait of Northern England and almost everything within it.
He sets out to re-imagine and capture the culture, history, landscape, poetry, film, music, places and people of the north.
'When you're northern, you're northern for ever, and you're instilled with a certain feel for life that you can't get rid of. You just can't.' - Morrissey
Morley grew up in Reddish, less than five miles from Manchester and even closer to Stockport.
He has worked as a music journalist, pop svengali and broadcaster.
He 'quit' music journalism in the mid-eighties as he thought he was too old:
"I was about 24, 25. Then, not only did everybody else carry on, they all started inventing magazines.
Me and Ian Penman at the NME in the early "80s used to get up to a few shenanigans and I often wonder whether the revenge on our hubris was the invention of Q and then Mojo and now the Americanisation of Uncut."
He is the author of a number of books on music – Ask: The Chatter of Pop, Words and Music: A History of Pop in the Shape of a City, Joy Division: Piece by Piece and Joy Division: Fragments – as well as an acclaimed memoir of his early years,
Ever since the age of seven, old enough to form an identity but too young to be aware that 'southern' was a category, Morley has always thought of himself as a northerner.
What that meant, he wasn't entirely sure. It was for him, as it is for millions of others in England, an absolute, indisputable truth.
Ambitiously sweeping and beautifully impressionistic, without ever losing touch with the minute details of life above the M25, The North is an extraordinary mixture of memoir and history, a unique insight into how we, as a nation, classify the unclassifiable.
New Writing South presents 'In Conversation with Paul Morley' at 7.30pm on Wednesday 5 June at TOM, The Old Market, Hove. The North (And Almost Everything In It): Published by Bloomsbury on 6 June 2013. Copies will be on sale at the event.