When I was growing up, before even becoming a fan of rock music, there was one name I knew very well – Jon English. He made a huge name for himself in the first Australian production of Jesus Christ Superstar as Judas – Tim Rice is supposed to have declared him the finest performer of the role.
Welcome to episode 144 of Love That Album
I welcome music writer and biographer Jeff Apter to the show. He's just had his latest book published “Behind Dark Eyes: The True Story of Jon English”. We talk about Jon's career as song interpreter, songwriter, actor (on TV and stage), rock star, composer, and family man. There are many musicians who go into acting (and vice versa) but few went into everything with the gung-ho that Jon did. Did I mention he was also hugely funny?? I'm not referring to his appearances on All Together Now – anytime he was on a stage with the Foster Brothers or as an actor, he owned the audience with his humour as well as THAT singing voice.
Jeff has released what I believe is a terrific biography that is respectful and devoted without being enslaved to the subject. It covers the exultation of his early chart success and the disappointment at having the work he prized the most largely ignored are covered. On many levels he was a huge success in Australian entertainment, but he was also heartbroken that what he believed was his greatest artistic achievement didn't get its due respect. We had a great conversation about all aspects of Jon and his work. If you're a fan or you're new to him, I hope you get something out of this episode.
If you're looking for Jon's music on physical media, you can pick up his albums in multi cd packs labeled as Anthology. There's also a great comp called Six Ribbons – The Ultimate Collection. If you prefer streaming, there's that option as well.
My huge thanks to Jeff for his time. You can order the book from https://www.booktopia.com.au/behind-dark-eyes-jeff-apter/book/9781925868463.html or if you're outside of Australia https://www.bookdepository.com/Behind-Dark-Eyes/9781925868463. You can check out Jeff's other work at http://jeffapter.com.au
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Download episode 144 from here.