How Does It Feel?

Listen to a sample

What to expect

Following a formative encounter with the British pop movie Slade in Flame in 1975, Mark Kermode decided that musical superstardom was totally attainable. And so, armed with a homemade electric guitar and very little talent, he embarked on an alternative career – a chaotic journey which would take him from the halls and youth clubs of North London to the stages of Glastonbury, the London Palladium and The Royal Albert Hall.

HOW DOES IT FEEL? follows a lifetime of musical misadventures which have seen Mark striking rockstar poses in the Sixth Form Common Room, striding around a string of TV shows dressed from head to foot in black leather, getting heckled off stage by a bunch of angry septuagenarians on a boat on the Mersey, showing Timmy Mallet how to build a tea-chest bass – and winning the International Street Entertainers of the Year award as part of a new wave of skiffle. Really.

Hilarious, self-deprecating and blissfully nostalgic, this is a riotous account of a bedroom dreamer’s attempts to conquer the world armed with nothing more than a chancer’s enthusiasm and a simple philosophy: how hard can it be?
Written and Read by Mark Kermode

Music samples from the album ‘Drive Train’ are reproduced with kind permission from The Dodge Brothers

(P) Orion Publishing Group 2018

Critics Review

  • Wonderful – such a terrific read. HOW DOES IT FEEL? hit me right between the eyes. It brilliantly captures the passion, commitment, searing self-knowledge and dizzy happiness that comes with loving music. An enchanting book

    STEPHEN FRY
  • Mark Kermode’s warmly salubrious memoir reveals, unexpectedly, a teenager who found skiffle as addictive – and sometimes as dangerous – as crack

    CAITLIN MORAN
  • [A] witty, self-deprecating account . . . at the heart of this entertaining memoir is a little boy in his back garden in Finchley, banging out a rhythm on saucepans with a couple of wooden spoons

    Daily Mail
  • Mark Kermode’s wonderful and wry book is a compelling combination of heartfelt enthusiasm, merciless self-analysis and a pleasingly full Rolodex of terrible band names. A true fan, he has the rare gift of making you want to discover things from the margins while never looking down on the mainstream. His writing feels like one of those letters you always wish to receive, one whose sole purpose seems to be to increase your zest for life

    RICHARD AYOADE
  • Mark Kermode deftly and winningly manages to have one foot in knotty film criticism and one in popular entertainment . . . If you enjoyed [Danny] Baker’s various volumes of autobiography, Kermode’s romp through his own ‘back story’ will appeal too, since he has much of his mentor’s style: breezily anecdotal, big on dialogue and set-pieces

    New Statesman
  • Kermode’s insistent perfecting of musical failure is madly funny. I loved this book and cringed at every awful stage fail, but his passion shines through. His unrequited desire to be a rock star in a time when every idiot had a band is bum-clenchingly funny and forensically recalled. How life isn’t always the movie in your mind

    GARY KEMP

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