LOOK WOT I DUN - DON POWELL
Donald Georgie Powell, the Mr memory man on the drums....not my words, instead, the words of Slade frontman Noddy Holder as he introduced the man at the back, perched as he was behind a massive Ludwig Custom built kit. Powell never needed the introduction to any of the bands followers who were by that time already rabid with enthusiasm for a 'bit of fancy paradiddlin'.
Slade fans fortunate enough to have met the man will attest to the fact that he is the nicest of the lot, a genuine 'bloke' with no pretention or predisposition to his status as one of rock n' rolls greats. A more unassuming man you couldn't wish to meet, always pleasant, courtious and above all else honest.
Don Powell, the boy from Bilston IS the original member of Slade, joining Johnny Howells & Micky Marson quite a while before he was joined by Dave Hill, and another three years before they were joined by Lea and Holder to become the unit that went on to become Slade.
Along the way Don has had his ups and downs, one of four working class lads that were heard and are still being heard around the globe, more so now in this age of online music and video, the world is a very much smaller place now than when it was when bands had to physically promote their wares by touring relentlessly.
One of those downs, perhaps the most well known about by those 'outside' the Slade fan bubble, was his near death experience in 1973 when he was critically injured in a road traffic incident when the band were perhaps at their height of fame.
The incident left his then girlfriend Angela dead and he flirted with death as serious head injuries threatened his life. This was 1973, seat belts were not used on a regular basis and the mortality rate from accident victims suffering head injuries was high, Powells survival prospects for a while appeared bleak. With any trauma to the brain there will always be some residual damage, and while Powell fought for life no one knew what damage, if any would be the result.
Eventually it became clear that he had received physical damage to the nerves that controlled his taste and ability to smell as well as a more serious organic brain damage, the result of which prevented him being able to form any new memories, think of it as having all of your memories stored on a collection of video tapes, but not being able to retrieve those memories bacause you dont know which tape it is on, or where on the tape it is. In order to combat this Don started keeping a diary to help him. The diary would contain the minutea of his daily life and over the years his collection of diaries was something all Slade fans would have wanted to dip into.
Now, in a collaboration with Danish author Lise Lyng Falkenberg, Donald has written his autobiography, tentatively titled 'Look Wot I Dun' which is to be published in September.
Lise has spent painstaking months of work with Don (who now lives in Denmark with his family) to produce what will certainly be the most important Slade related event of the past two decades, anyone who has ever met Don will know that he would never shirk from saying it how it is, and we are all expecting a completely different read from that which Holder pushed out a few years back, which seemed to consist of rewritten contemporary press articles sprinkled with a variety of 'Rent-A-Nod' anecdotes, it never really hit the mark and gave us the fans what we wanted. I am sure that Powell will not hold back and perhaps a few of the mysteries surrounding the band that up until now we only have Holders version to refer to.
The book is scheduled for release on 14th September 2013 and I am sure that every Slade fan and casual music lover will want to help out our Don by shelling out a few quid for the book. You can do so by following this link to Amazon where it can be pre ordered. LOOK WOT I DUN PRE ORDER FROM AMAZON