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  • Published: 3 December 2018
  • ISBN: 9780143795995
  • Imprint: Penguin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 576
  • RRP: $24.99

How to Make Gravy




A memoir in a hundred songs – classy storytelling from Australia's most prodigious singer-songwriter.

Paul Kelly is a uniquely gifted storyteller. For thirty years he has written songs of uncommon directness about everything from love and land rights to cricket and cooking. 'Before Too Long', 'To Her Door', 'Leaps And Bounds', 'Don't Start Me Talking', 'Dumb Things', 'From Little Things Big Things Grow', 'How To Make Gravy' – his songs connect generations of listeners across the country.

In a memoir that has been greeted with acclaim by critics and adulation by fans, Kelly takes the lyrics of his songs as starting points to tell the stories of his life – the highs and lows of performing, the art of songwriting, being on the road with the band, tales of his childhood, family, friends and fellow musicians. All illuminate Kelly's wide sources of inspiration, offering an unequalled portrait of the creative mind.

Playful and honest, insightful and intimate, How To Make Gravy is an irresistible reflection on both the big and little things in life.

Kelly's specially recorded versions of the A to Z songs, stripped back to their essentials as solo or duo performances, are available digitally and in a companion CD boxed set that included a 64-pages booklet of photographs.'A carnival of ideas . . . The flavour of Kelly – his openness and honesty and passion for the detail of life – he suffuses the book . . . The closest we've come to an insight into the thoughts and work methods of this great poet.' Weekly Review

'The pre-eminent writer of his generation. His body of work stands against any novelist, playwright or filmmaker as the definitive narrative of recent decades.' Weekend Australian‘Perhaps the finest and most unflinching autobiography ever written by an Australian musician.’ Noel Mengel

  • Published: 3 December 2018
  • ISBN: 9780143795995
  • Imprint: Penguin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 576
  • RRP: $24.99

About the author

Paul Kelly

Paul Kelly is The Australian newspaper’s Editor at Large. He is the author of nine books on Australian politics and history including the influential The End of Certainty: Power, Politics and Business in Australia (1992) and Triumph & Demise: The Broken Promise of a Labor Generation (2014), his account of the Rudd–Gillard era. Present at Parliament House in Canberra on the day of the Dismissal, Kelly has covered this controversy ever since and has written several books on the subject, most recently The Dismissal: In the Queen's name (2015) with Troy Bramston.

Also by Paul Kelly

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Awards & recognition

Australian Book Industry Awards

Winner  •  2011  •  Biography of the Year

Australian Book Industry Awards

Shortlisted  •  2011  •  Book of the Year

Indie Award

Shortlisted  •  2011  •  Non-Fiction

Nielsen BookData Booksellers Choice Awd

Shortlisted  •  2011  •  Prize for Writing for Young Adults

Prime Minister's Literary Award

Shortlisted  •  2011  •  Non-Fiction

National Biography Award

Shortlisted  •  2012  •  Prize for Writing for Young Adults

NSW Premier's Literary Awards

Shortlisted  •  2012  •  Douglas Stewart Prize

Melbourne Prize for Literature

Shortlisted  •  2013  •  Best Writing Award

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