Saturday, December 20, 2008

Tommy Hunt Only Human - My Soulful Life

Tommy Hunt's autobiography is now available. Here's a review from my old friend Eddie Hubbard:

To Soul music lovers the world over , we often only see a very small part of the life's led by our heroes and heroines , via their recordings, or when we cheer them from the stage in a live performance .I feel that we often forget that these artists, like us , have a human side to them , far removed from the glitter and adoration heaped upon them by us , and the uphill struggle it took them to become a star name in the first place .

Tommy Hunt is now a household name to most Soul music fans throughout the UK and beyond ,via his live performances at Wigan Casino in the 70's and his multitude of great recordings such as " Never love a robin " , " Words can never tell it "[ Dynamo ] , " I'll make you happy " [ Capitol ] and " I don't want to lose you " [Atlantic ] , but it wasn't always like this ........On December 1st his autobiography " Only Human - My Soulful life " written with Jan Warburton , is released through Bankhouse books , and tells in his own words, how he rose through humble beginnings in Pittsburgh USA to become a member of the world famous " Doo - Wop " group The Flamingos ,later signing for Florence Greenberg's Scepter /Wand set up, and having a massive hit with " Human " . Having his follow up record upstaged by Dusty Springfield ,working with Burt Bacharach/ Hal David, Luther Dixon and many more, live appearances at New York's Apollo theatre , with some great tales of his time spent rubbing shoulders with other famous Soul stars , like Marvin Gaye ,James Brown , The Shirelles and many more , the desperation of prison , drugs , and his saving grace ,the UK's Northern Soul scene , plus the ultimate honour of being inducted into the " Rock and Roll hall of Fame".

Having read the first five chapters of this book in advance , I can confirm that this is a compelling read , and having recently chatted at length with Tommy during the recent" Soul in the sun" weekend in Lanzarote, I can also assure potential readers , that he tells one hell of a story , with wonderful recall ,warmth and humour , which has whetted my appetite to read the rest of his life story in full . An essential purchase , just in time for Christmas !! .

Eddie Hubbard [ November 2008 ]

This book is available through Tommy's website, all good book shops, plus online at:


  1. Anonymous3:42 PM

    It's a good read for anyone thinking of taking up a musical career. Very down to earth. Creatives often find "life" more of a struggle than actually performing. Having seen Tommy's show's many many times at Wigan, it was interesting to read what this guy had been through.

  2. Brian9:02 PM

    As a Canadian and no particular fan of the 'Doo-wop' era, or even being previously aware of the U.K. Northern Soul movement, I was very pleasantly surprised to find that, once I'd started it, I couldn't put Tommy Hunt's autobiography,'Only Human - My Soulful Life' down! It's written in an easy-flowing, conversational style and Jan Warburton, Hunt's amanuensis and collaborator, deserves tremendous credit especially for her skillful use of dialogue that adds to the immediacy of the work. Tommy Hunt's path to success, particularly for a black American in the post-WWII years, was anything but smooth. The book chronicles the often turbulent career evolution and personal trials of an artist determined to prevail against all odds who was forced to steer a course through the often murky waters of the entertainment business and the predators and jealous rivals that abound in them. It's a tribute to Tommy Hunt's durability and perseverence that he overcame the many challenges confronting him right from his early chidhood to gain celebrity as an entertainer in his chosen field.

    The book is also an invaluable read for anyone contemplating a career in musical entertainment, giving first-hand pointers on how to avoid the many pitfalls of the business and the specious rogues that can prey on and exploit the unsuspecting novice. Tommy Hunt admits the mistakes he's made, some of which he's clearly not proud. He can also name-drop with the best of them when he mentions the many showbiz luminaries of his era with whom he has rubbed shoulders, yet nowhere does he forsake the tone of honesty, humility and gratitude for his success that is the keynote of this autobiography. Get the book, read it and enjoy it!