ADRIAN HARTE talks about his upcoming FAITH NO MORE biography 'Small Victories'
So far there have been several books written about Faith No More. The first, The Real Story, was authored by Steffan Chirazi and published in 1994. Steffan was introduced to FNM by his friend Cliff Burton and championed them throughout their early career, he wrote some of the most infamous articles about the band for publications such as Kerrang!, BAM and RIP.
The second book, The Faith No More and Mr. Bungle Companion, was authored by music journalist Greg Prato. It borrowed heavily from previous interviews and Chirazi's work but was a comprehensive history of the two bands and a must for fans unfamiliar with the band's detailed history. This book was published in 2013.
In 2016 Faith No More Królowie życia (i inne nadużycia), a FNM book written by Poilsh author Krzywinski Maciej and a Mike Patton biography EPIC – Genio E Follia Di Mike Patton written by Italian Giovanni Rossi were released.
In September 2018 Jawbone Press will release the ultimate Faith No More biography authored by Adrian Harte, Small Victories.
Adrian has been a fan since the early 90's and in 2009 he began writing FNM 2.0, a FNM fan webpage and one of only three linked to the official FNM website. It has been the go to page for news and memorabilia ever since. It was his efforts that inspired others to start up webpages.... including us.
We have been in touch with Adrian during the process of his upcoming book and we are very excited. I have met Adrian and I am privileged to call him a friend. He is a passionate, devoted fan and a talented writer who, without a shadow of a doubt, will present us with the most entertaining and accurate book possible.
How will Small Victories differ to those which have come before? Well... for one Adrian flew out to San Francisco to meet up with members of the band and those who are integral to their story. We thought we would check in with Adrian to find out what we can expect.
How's the book coming along?
Great. My deadline is soon approaching and I’ve the book technically written. Probably on my sixth or seventh draft and lots of editing happening. I wrote about 160,000 words initially, which is way too much, but have been able to tighten it considerably. Have had a lot of help especially from a friend who is a wonderful editor, and from Andrew Bowie from FNM Gig Database for fact-checking.
Next steps are submission of the final manuscript to the publisher and then there will be several more edits. And I’ll be choosing photos, working on the cover, getting it ready for pre-order before it’s finally published in September.
You have gone to great lengths to ensure that this book is the ultimate biography and recently spent some time in SF talking with members of the band. What was it like discussing such history with your heroes?
It has been the an unforgettable experience and the band members have been brilliant to deal with.
They have given their time and insights and been candid and ready to revisit their pasts.
At times, you have to forget you’re a fan and ask the right questions and again the band have been spot on with this.
As fans we often want to know things the band members would rather forget! Was there anything that they were reluctant to discuss?
No. But they have rightfully made sure that everyone gets treated fairly, and that context is understood.
Did you find that being in their home city was inspiring and essential to your vision?
It was inspiring because after a lot of phone and email interviews we could spend time talking face to face. As San Francisco has changed so much since the 80s, you cannot really soak that up. But having said that, it was important to visit places like On Broadway and to go to the city’s wonderful public library.
Will the book contain some unseen photographs?
Yes. I’m working on that now. Bill and Wade Worthington have shared a lot of photos and I’ve also been looking at photos from professionals like Mark Leialoha, Dustin Rabin and Ron Delaney.
Did you manage to have conversation with Chuck before he passed away?
Yes – I had one long and fascinating phone call with Chuck. Unfortunately I was chasing him up for several months after that for a final interview. But it was not to be. However, there are some fresh insights from Chuck and about Chuck in the book, and his part in the story is given due prominence.
Is the focus completely on FNM or do you explore the members endeavours during the band's eleven year hiatus?
There are parts of the book that cover one year in 30,000 words and there are parts of the book that cover 3,000 days in one page. So the hiatus and the other projects are only dealt with in the context of the overall FNM story.
Which chapters have been the most fun to write? Which chapters have been the most difficult?
Toughest was certainly the split but mostly because I wanted so much to get the circumstances and the chronology as clear as possible. I really enjoyed the WCAL and IY era chapters as I learned so much and Angel Dust chapters because they are so interesting and central to the story.
Is there anything you can share with us, without giving too much away, to whet our appetites?
I think there will be excitement over the cover and photos. And the book tells a tale that no one has had the chance to tell previously. Steffan Chirazi’s biography was brilliant and perfectly captured the craziness of FNM at the peak of their popularity. (And Steffan played an important role in getting the band noticed, especially in the UK, with his writing for Kerang and BAM.)
But this a different book that tells the whole story and ties a lot of different strands together.
No stone has been left unturned and no story untold. How the band was signed, how the records were made, who auditioned to join the band at various times, what happened on tour, how the split and reunions happened, how and why this unique band weaved their musical magic.
Do you find it amusing that an Irishman who lives in Switzerland, and finds his research from all over the world including the UK and Australia, is the one to write about an American band?
I think the book shows that FNM belongs to no one country. Chile, Brazil, Australia, UK, Czech Republic and many more have claims.
But I have found the whole experience surreal. And thanks to everyone around the world who have helped. Including yourself Jim especially for your amazing archive and your graphic talents.
I cannot wait to see the book in print and for people to get the chance to read it and immerse themselves in the rich story.