True: The Autobiography of Martin Kemp - Martin KempOrion, 2000, Paperback ..
Condition: Near Fine.
Martin Kemp has been through many incarnations in his 38 years. From Saturday drama school kid to bass guitarist in his big brother's band, blockbusting film star and EastEnders' bad boy, Kemp has lived out a variety of roles most of us can only dream of. Yet nothing prepared him for the discovery of a brain tumour in 1995, major surgery and two years' recuperation, enforcing a period of introspection and reassessment that has resulted in his autobiography, True. Martin Kemp grew up in a working-class family in Islington, North London, and from the age of six attended, along with elder brother Gary, the Anna Scher School, famous for launching the career of many a young television star. Gary was one of the founding members of New Romantic group Spandau Ballet in 1979; Martin, working as an apprentice in a print shop, longed to join. When the call came for him, he was ready--but he had to ask his father to pen his letter of resignation, which read as follows: "Martin wants to leave to become a pop star. Thanks for understanding… "Spandau Ballet became one of the most successful groups of the early 1980s, joining in the tide of ruffled shirts and highlighted hair that became known as New Wave. The band toured the world, indulging in the champagne and cocaine lifestyle, notching up hit after hit with classic tracks such as "Gold", "I'll Fly For You", "Through the Barricades" and, of course, "True". Martin settled down with wife Shirlie, singer with that other mega-group of the decade, Wham! and the band ran its due course. A unique starring role along with Gary in the blockbuster film based on the true-life story of 60s' East End gangsters The Krays led Kemp to Hollywood, where he eked out a living in various ill-received ventures before getting fed up of LA, preferring his children to grow up back home in England. And then came the discovery of a small bump on the back of his head, which within a couple of weeks had grown to the size of a "mountain", the frightening diagnosis of a tumour, surgery and recovery. It was after this period that Kemp faced another trial--screen-testing for a part in Britain's most successful soap, EastEnders. Within weeks he had assumed a larger-than-life personality as trendy nightclub owner and villain Steve Owen. 352pp.
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