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‘Moving and absorbing, The Sound of Being Human mixes memoir, analysis, anecdote and personal chronicle into a mosaic that evokes what music means to the individual and the human tribe. A candid, beautiful read’ Stuart Maconie

The Sound of Being Human explores, in detail, why music plays such a deep-rooted role in so many lives, from before we are born to our last days. At its heart is Jude’s own story: how songs helped her wrestle with the grief of losing her father at age five; concoct her own sense of self as a lonely adolescent; sky-rocket her relationships, both real and imagined, in the flushes of early womanhood, propel her own journey into working life, adulthood and parenthood, and look to the future.

Shaped around twelve songs, ranging from ABBA’s ‘Super Trouper’ to Neneh Cherry’s ‘Buffalo Stance’, Kraftwerk’s ‘Radioactivity’ to Martha Reeves and the Vandellas’ ‘Heat Wave’, the book combines memoir and historical, scientific and cultural enquiry to show how music can shape different versions of ourselves; how we rely upon music for comfort, for epiphanies, and for sexual and physical connection; how we grow with songs, and songs grow inside us, helping us come to terms with grief, getting older and powerful memories. It is about music’s power to help us tell our own stories, whatever they are, and make them sing.

Reviews

Moving and absorbing, The Sound Of Being Human mixes memoir, analysis, anecdote and personal chronicle into a mosaic that evokes what music means to the individual and the human tribe. A candid, beautiful read
Stuart Maconie
There are books that have made me cry and books that have taught me about the psychological effects of music, but Jude's is the only one that has done both. It's a wonderful thing - real food for the heart and head. A book that lots of people will treasure
Matt Osman