Wivenhoe Bookshop Magazine & Newsletter | Friday 27 April 2018

Sound System – the Political Power of Music

Raves, Riots and Revolutions

‘Sound System – the Political Power of Music’

with Dave Randall

3pm Mon 1st May

Wivenhoe International May Day

Congregational Church

High St, Wivenhoe


A blistering, intelligent polemic about the political power of music, Sound System investigates the raves, riots, and revolution of contemporary culture to answer the question—how can we make music serve the interest of the many, rather than the few?

Dave Randall will be joining us to give an illustrated talk about the book, play, sign copies, and answer questions.

About the Book

Musicians have often wanted to change the world, and many—from underground grime artists to mainstream pop icons—channel that desire through the political power of music. Music has a unique ability to unsettle the most fundamental political and social conventions—or, alternatively, to stabilize the status-quo.

Sound System is the story of one musician’s journey to discover what exactly makes music so powerful. Years of touring, protesting, and performing have given Dave Randall an insider’s view of the music industry, enabling him to shed light on the most tightly held secrets of celebrity, commodification, and culture. He finds remarkable examples of music as a force of social change as well as something that has been used to keep people in their place throughout history. From the Glastonbury Festival to the Arab Spring, Pop Idol to Trinidadian Carnival, Randall finds political inspiration across the musical spectrum.

Dave Randall on Radcliffe and Maconie, BBC Radio 6 Music

Praise for ‘Sound System’

‘Fascinating….a deeply intelligent look at music and society,  and in particular pop’s tempestuous relationship with commerce. Thought provoking, readable and clever stuff.’

Mark Radcliffe, BBC6 Music & BBC Radio 2.

‘What an imaginative idea, what a terrific,  exciting book, weaving together the strands of music, politics and worldwide struggles.’

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, Journalist & Writer.

‘This engaging, hugely readable book should be compulsory reading for anyone interested in the state of the world – and in the essential, life-affirming role music can play in changing it for the better.’

Tom Robinson, BBC6 Music.

About Dave Randall

Dave Randall is a guitarist, producer and composer. He has contributed to multi-million selling albums by Grammy Award

Dave Randall at Glastonbury ©Damon Hope

winning artist Dido and has toured the world a number of times performing with UK dance act Faithless.

His own critically acclaimed albums released under the name Slovo feature international collaborations with artists including Iceland’s Emiliana Torrini, West Africa’s Maezah and US jazz legend Max Roach.

Dave was invited to appear alongside Baaba Maal, Michael Stipe, the Mahotella Queens, Neneh Cherry and others, in the studio and on stage, as part of the 1 Giant Leap project. Recently he has toured with Sinead O’Connor, teamed up with Big Dada artist Mike Ladd, clarinet player Carol Robinson and drummer Dirk Rothbrust to create the Paris based improvising quartet ‘Sleeping In Vilna’, and contributed guitars to the stunning debut album from Nessi Gomes. He’s currently performing live with Roland Gift (Fine Young Cannibals).

Dave brings this wealth of knowledge of international music to his compositions for screen and stage. He has recently produced music for the feature length documentaries ‘Rebuilding Hope’ (set in the US and Sudan) and ‘Witness Bahrain’.
He has also composed music for the contemporary dance/juggling company ‘Feeding The Fish’, the acclaimed Palestinian dance company Al Zaytouna and the Robert Swinston dance company.

As well as making music Dave has published numerous articles and given talks on the history of music and its role in society.



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