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BILLY BRAGG MARKS FOUR DECADES OF MUSICAL MAGIC, SOCIO-POLITICAL PROTEST & HEARTFELT EMPATHY WITH CAREER SPANNING

14 DISC BOX SET, 3 LP AND SINGLE LP SETS

‘THE ROARING FORTY 1983-2023’ TO BE RELEASED ON 27th OCT ‘23

PRE-ORDER THE ALBUM HERE: https://bbragg.lnk.to/theroaringforty

Punk rocker, soldier, Essex boy, folk singer, Skiffle aficionado, protest singers’ protest singer, patriot, optimist, lefty polemicist, author, soul miner, musicologist, champion of the underclasses, Cockney vocalist and all round decent bloke Billy Bragg will release a career spanning 14-disc deluxe box set (3 LP and single LP versions also available) entitled ‘The Roaring Forty 1983-2023’ on 27th October ’23 on Cooking Vinyl. ‘The Roaring Forty 1983-2023’ celebrates the remarkable and enduring musical legacy of a much-loved songwriter, principled activist and alternative national treasure.

‘The Roaring Forty 1983-2023’ compiled by Billy Bragg will be available in three formats:
1. a single disc13-song ‘primer’ on red vinyl,
2. a 40-song 3 album collection on three shades of green vinyl (also available as a 2 CD and digital set) and… (saved the best ‘til last!)
3. a 14 CD box set, containing more than 300 songs including each of Billy’s twelve studio albums, non-album singles and B- Sides, session tracks, rare live recordings, collaborations and previously unreleased material from across his illustrious career. The box set also includes a large format book containing images of 40 significant objects from Billy’s career, including the hand tinted flyer to his first solo gig, his first NME cover, the original lyrics to ‘A Lover Sings’, the Red Wedge manifesto, his membership card to the Smokey Robinson & The Miracles fan club, and much else besides, with fascinating commentary from the man himself.

Says Billy: “It seems like just the other day that I was handing John Peel a mushroom biryani and asking him to play my first record. The music business has changed dramatically since then, but my belief in the power of the song is undimmed”

Billy Bragg has been a fearless recording artist, tireless live performer and peerless political campaigner for 40 years. He has released 11 solo studio albums: Life’s A Riot With Spy Vs Spy (1983); Brewing Up With Billy Bragg (1984); Talking With The Taxman About Poetry (1986); Workers Playtime (1988); The Internationale (1990); Don’t Try This At Home (1991); William Bloke (1996); England, Half English (2002); Mr Love & Justice (2008); Tooth & Nail (2013); The Million Things That Never Happened (2021); three albums with Wilco – (Grammy nominated) Mermaid Avenue (1998); Mermaid Avenue Vol II (2000); Mermaid Avenue Vol III (2012); and one album with Joe Henry – Shine A Light: Field Recordings From The Great American Railroad (2016). He released a mini album Bridges Not Walls in 2017. His performances at the BBC were anthologised in The Best Of Billy Bragg At The BBC 1983-2019 (2019). At their best, Billy’s songs present ‘the perfect Venn diagram between the political and the personal’ (The Guardian).

Billy Bragg added best-selling author/musicologist to his CV with the success of his acclaimed 2017 book Roots, Radicals & Rockers – How Skiffle Changed The World. He has written two books of political analysis – The Progressive Patriot: A Search For Belonging (2006) and The Three Dimensions of Freedom (2019), which has been translated into German and Spanish.
To be expected from a career that has straddled many genres, Billy Bragg has worked with a wealth of celebrated musicians from different musical backgrounds including Eliza Carthy, Norman Cook, Dick Gaughan, Joe Henry, Kirsty MacColl, Ian McLagan, Johnny Marr, R.E.M., Natalie Merchant, Romeo Stodart, Danny Thompson, Robert Wyatt, Pete Seeger, The Philharmonic Orchestra and US alt-Rock band Wilco, with whom he created two critically acclaimed collections setting previously unheard lyrics by legendary American Folk singer Woody Guthrie to music.

WHAT THE PAPERS SAY ABOUT BILLY BRAGG

‘the perfect Venn diagram between the political and the personal’ The Guardian.

‘a musically mature, international artist who is still bursting with energy.” Rolling Stone

‘…an elder statesman of British popular music.’ The Morning Star

‘Unquestionably our generation’s finest protest singer…vital and indispensable’ Classic Pop

“Everybody’s favourite troubadour.” Scotland On Sunday

“A true legend of a singer-songwriter…” Louder Than War

“A British institution.” Clash

“Missing link between Woody Guthrie and Joe Strummer.” Pitchfork

‘One of the great human beings of Planet Earth…while the world changes by the minute, Billy’s empathy remains steadfast.’ Brooklyn Vegan

‘One of the most reliable left-wing good guys in all of music.’ Stereogum

‘….Bragg will always be relevant.’ Record Collector

TRACKLISTINGS FOR ‘THE ROARING FORTY 1983-2023’
1 LP VERSION

A1. ‘A New England’ (2013 Remaster) from ‘Life’s A Riot With Spy Vs. Spy’ (1983)
A2. ‘Between The Wars’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Between The Wars E.P. ‘ (1985)
A3. ‘Levi Stubbs’ Tears’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Levi Stubbs’ Tears’ (1986)
A4. ‘Greetings To The New Brunette’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Talking With The Taxman About Poetry’ (1986)
A5. ‘Waiting For The Great Leap Forwards’ (2006 Remaster) from ’Workers Playtime’ (1988)
A6. ‘Sexuality’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Don’t Try This At Home’ (1991)
A7 .‘Accident Waiting To Happen (Red Star Version)’ (1999 Remaster) from ‘Accident Waiting To Happen’ (1992)
B1. ‘Upfield’ (2006 remaster) from ‘William Bloke’ (1996)
B2. ‘The Boy Done Good’ (1999 Remaster) from ‘Bloke On Bloke’ (1997)
B3. ‘California Stars’ (Live October / November 1998) from ‘Mermaid Avenue Tour / You Can Call Me Cupcake’ (1999) – Billy Bragg & The Blokes
B4. ‘I Keep Faith’ from ‘Mr. Love & Justice’ (2008)
B5. ‘The L&N Don’t Stop Here Anymore’ from ‘Shine A Light: Field Recordings From The Great American Railroad’ (2016) – Billy Bragg & Joe Henry
B6. ‘I Will Be Your Shield’ from ‘The Million Things That Never Happened’ (2021)

TRACKLISTING 3 LP/2CD VERSION

A1. ‘A New England (2013 Remaster) from ‘Life’s A Riot With Spy Vs. Spy (1983)
A2. ‘The Milkman Of Human Kindness’ (2013 Remaster) from ‘Life’s A Riot With Spy Vs. Spy’ (1983)
A3. ‘To Have And Have Not’ (2013 Remaster) from ‘Life’s A Riot With Spy Vs. Spy’ (1983)
A4. ‘The Man In The Iron Mask’ (2013 Remaster) from ‘Life’s A Riot With Spy Vs. Spy’ (1983)
A5. ‘St. Swithin’s Day’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Brewing Up With’ (1984)
A6. ‘The Saturday Boy’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Brewing Up With’ (1984)
A7. ‘Between The Wars’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Between The Wars E.P.’ (1985)
A8. ‘The World Turned Upside Down’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Between The Wars E.P.’ (1985)
A9. ‘Which Side Are You On?’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Between The Wars E.P.’ (1985)
B1. ‘Levi Stubbs’ Tears’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Levi Stubbs’ Tears’ (1986)
B2. ‘Greetings To The New Brunette’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Talking With The Taxman About Poetry’ (1986)
B3. ‘There Is Power In A Union’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Talking With The Taxman About Poetry’ (1986)
B4. ‘Help Save The Youth Of America’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Talking With The Taxman About Poetry’ (1986)
B5. ‘She’s Leaving Home’ (1999 Remaster) from ‘She’s Leaving Home’ (1988) – Billy Bragg with Cara Tivey
B6. ‘She’s Got A New Spell’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Workers Playtime’ (1988)
B7. ‘Must I Paint You A Picture’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Workers Playtime’ (1988) Continued…/

C1. ‘Waiting For The Great Leap Forwards’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Workers Playtime’ (1988)
C2. ‘The Internationale’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘The Internationale’ (1990)
C3. ‘Tank Park Salute’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Don’t Try This At Home’ (1991)
C4. ‘Sexuality’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Don’t Try This At Home’ (1991)
C5. ‘Accident Waiting To Happen (Red Star Version)’ (1999 Remaster) from ‘Accident Waiting To Happen’ (1992)
C6. ‘Upfield’ from ‘William Bloke’ (1996)

D1. ‘The Boy Done Good’ (1999 Remaster) from ‘Bloke On Bloke’ (1997)
D2. ‘Walt Whitman’s Niece’ from ‘Mermaid Avenue’ (1998) Billy Bragg and Wilco
D3. ‘Way Over Yonder In The Minor Key’ from ‘Mermaid Avenue’ (1998) Billy Bragg and Wilco
D4. ‘My Flying Saucer’ from ‘Mermaid Avenue II’ (2000) Billy Bragg and Wilco
D5. ‘California Stars (Live October / November 1999)’ from ‘Mermaid Avenue Tour / You Can Call Me Cupcake’ (1999) Billy Bragg and The Blokes
D6. ‘Some Days I See The Point’ from ‘England, Half English’ (2002) – Billy Bragg & The Blokes

E1. ‘England, Half English’ from ‘England, Half English’ (2002) Billy Bragg and The Blokes
E2. ‘Take Down The Union Jack (Band Version)’ (2006 Remaster) from ‘Take Down The Union Jack’ (2002) – Billy Bragg & The Blokes
E3. ‘Old Clash Fan Fight Song’ from ‘Johnny Clash’ (2007)
E4. ‘I Keep Faith’ from ‘Mr. Love & Justice’ (2008)
E5. ‘Bugeye Jim’ from ‘Mermaid Avenue III’ (2012)
E6. ‘Never Buy The Sun’ from ‘Fight Songs (A Decade Of Downloads)’ (2011)

F1. ‘No One Knows Nothing Anymore’ from ‘Tooth & Nail’ (2013)
F2. ‘Handyman Blues’ from ‘Tooth & Nail’ (2013)
F3. ‘The L&N Don’t Stop Here Anymore’ from ‘Shine A Light: Field Recordings From The Great American Railroad’ – Billy Bragg and Joe Henry
F4. ‘King Tide And The Sunny Day Flood’ from ‘Bridges Not Walls’ (2017)
F5. ‘Mid-Century Modern’ from ‘The Million Things That Never Happened’ (2021)
F6. ‘I Will Be Your Shield’ from ‘The Million Things That Never Happened’ (2021)

14 DISC CD VERSION

Disc 1. 1983 – 1984: Life’s A Riot… Plus
Disc 2. 1984 – 1985: Brewing Up With… Plus
Disc 3. 1986 – 1988: Talking With The Taxman… Plus
Disc 4. 1988 – 1989: Workers Playtime… Plus
Disc 5. 1990 – 1991: The Internationale… Plus
Disc 6. 1991 – 1992: Don’t Try This At Home… Plus
Disc 7. 1996 – 1997: William Bloke / Bloke On Bloke… Plus
Disc 8. 1998 – 2012: The Mermaid Avenue Recordings
Disc 9. 1998 – 2002: England, Half English… Plus
Disc 10. 2006 – 2010: Mr. Love & Justice / Pressure Drop… Plus
Disc 11. 2011 – 2015: Tooth & Nail… Plus
Disc 12. 2016 – 2017: Shine A Light / Bridges Not Walls… Plus
Disc 13: 2021 The Million Things That Never Happened Plus
Disc 14: 1990 – 2015: Rare & Previously Unreleased Recordings

BILLY BRAGG – ‘THE ROARING FORTY 1983-2023’
RELEASE DATE – 27th OCT ‘23

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