Viv Albertine and Tracey Thorn

Viv Albertine and Tracey Thorn

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Two women who made their names in music discuss their memoirs with Anita Sethi

New second memoirs by Viv Albertine and Tracey Thorn are among the most compelling of recent years. Albertine’s To Throw Away Unopened is a fearless examination of the truth about family, power, and her identity as a rebel and outsider. Thorn’s Another Planet: A Teenager in Suburbia revisits her upbringing amid the Green Belt post-war dream which is at the same time surreal and intensely normal.

They talk to Anita Sethi about their shared and contrasting approach to memory and the stories of pain, joy and the everyday that make up life.

Viv Albertine, songwriter and musician, was the guitarist in the hugely influential female punk band The Slits. A confidante of the Sex Pistols and the Clash, Viv was a key player in British punk culture. Alongside The Slits, she collaborated with numerous musicians, including Adrian Sherwood, before marking out a career in television and film production. After a hiatus of twenty-five years, Viv's first solo album, The Vermillion Border, was released in 2012 to great critical acclaim, and her award winning first memoir Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys was published in 2014.

Tracey Thorn is a singer-songwriter and writer, best known for her seventeen years in bestselling duo Everything But The Girl. She grew up as the youngest of three children in Brookmans Park, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, where she learned the piano, enjoyed underaged drinking, and started her first band while still at school. Since then, she has released four solo albums, one movie soundtrack, a large handful of singles and two books, including her Sunday Times bestselling first memoir, Bedsit Disco Queen, and currently writes a column for the New Statesman.

Anita Sethi (chair) is a journalist and writer who has written for The Guardian, The Observer, The Sunday Times, The Independent, the New Statesman, Granta, and The Times Literary Supplement. She is a contributor to the anthologies We Mark Your Memory (2018), Seaside Special: Postcards From The Edge (2018) and forthcoming collections Women on Nature edited by Katharine Norbury (published 2019) and Common People edited by Kit de Waal (published Spring 2019).

This event will have live speech-to-text interpretation.

Part of a short season of events at the British Library devoted to Diaries and Memoirs.

Photo of Tracey Thorn by Edward Bishop


Name: Viv Albertine and Tracey Thorn
Where: Knowledge Centre
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Show Map      How to get to the Library
When: -
Price: Full Price: £15.00
Member: £15.00
Senior 60+: £12.00
Student: £10.00
Registered Unemployed: £10.00
Under 18: £10.00
Enquiries: +44 (0)1937 546546