Walls Come Tumbling Down charts the pivotal period between 1976 and 1992 that saw politics and pop music come together for the first time in Britain’s musical history; musicians and their fans suddenly became instigators of social change, and “the political persuasion of musicians was as important as the songs they sang”. Through the voices of campaigners, musicians, artists and politicians, Daniel Rachel follows the rise and fall of three key movements of the time: Rock Against Racism, 2 Tone, and Red Wedge, revealing how they all shaped, and were shaped by, the music of a generation.
Composed of interviews with over 150 of the key players at the time, Walls Come Tumbling Down is a fascinating, polyphonic and authoritative account of those crucial sixteen years in Britain’s history.
Daniel Rachel was born in Solihull in the summer before The Beatles announced their break-up. He wrote his first song when he was sixteen and was the lead-singer in Rachels Basement, which he formed in his early twenties. In 2001, he released his debut solo album, A Simple Twist of Folk, on Dust Records, followed in 2006 by A Taste Of Money. Daniel is a specialist in Forum Theatre direction. is His first book was Isle of Noises: Conversations with great British songwriters, published in 2014.
Mykaell Riley is Head of Music Production and Director of the Centre For Black Music Research UK at the University of Westminster. He began his career as a performer with pioneering Reggae outfit Steel Pulse before moving on to found the Reggae Philharmonic Orchestra. He has been a professional writer, producer and arranger for over fifteen years, producing music for TV and film and over thirty albums, and has worked for artists such as Soul II Soul, Courtney Pine, Baba Maal and many others.
● Photograph of Daniel Rachel by Lawrence Impey
Interested in learning more about Newham Bookshop and some of the people connected with it? We have four lessons for classroom or family use developed from On the Record’s oral history project centered around Newham Bookshop, Writing and Reading Newham. Click here for full details.
We are proud that Newham Bookshop is LoveReading’s Bookshop of the Month. The article features a Q&A with Vivian Archer, which you can read here.