Buzzcocks’ Steve Diggle Announces Memoir “AUTONOMY: PORTRAIT OF A BUZZCOCK” due August 22nd

May 31, 2024

Buzzcocks’ Steve Diggle Announces Memoir “AUTONOMY: PORTRAIT OF A BUZZCOCK”

due August 22nd

“Steve Diggle’s approach to bass, and later his switch to guitar, was crucial in the shaping of the sound of the entire punk movement. Autonomy captures the excitement I felt in 1977 first hearing Buzzcocks’ visceral punch.” Will Sergeant, Echo & the Bunnymen

Omnibus Press are set to publish Autonomy – Portrait of a Buzzcock by Steve Diggle on August 22nd. The singer, guitarist and last remaining original member’s definitive account of the Manchester icons, Autonomy is a deeply personal memoir from one of the founders of the UK punk scene who helped change the music – and outlook – of a generation for good.

For the first time since the death of Pete Shelley in 2018, Diggle opens up here about their incredible shared legacy and complex friendship through the band’s rise, fall, and rise again. From their origins supporting the Sex Pistols in 1976, to the making of their seminal Spiral Scratch EP. From their ascent to Top of the Pops as the ‘punk Beatles’ with classic singles including ‘Ever Fallen In Love’, ‘Everybody’s Happy Nowadays’, ‘Promises’ and ‘Harmony In My Head’ (the latter two respectively co-written/written and sung by Diggle), to the excess of success, break-up, reformation and life beyond bereavement.

Funny, honest and philosophical, Autonomy is a heroic survivor’s tale from an irrepressible rock’n’roll spirit. More than an essential first-hand account of one of the best loved and most influential punk groups of all time who inspired everyone from The Smiths to Nirvana, the book is also a rousing portrait of working-class dreams and escape. Diggle offers an emotionally vivid description of his upbringing in the Sixties Manchester of the Moors Murderers and George Best, his wayward teens as a scooter mod and a near-fatal car accident that killed his best friend and changed his own path in life.

Diggle reflects, “Before I’m Steve Diggle from Buzzcocks, I’m Steve Diggle from Manchester. I grew up in its streets, each like a sculptor’s chisel carving me into the person I am, the streets that taught me to see the poetry of life.” As its knowingly Joycean subtitle alludes, Autonomytraces the making of the artist from young man to punk legend. 

Since 2019 Diggle has led Buzzcocks as their sole singer and songwriter, releasing their tenth album Sonics In The Soul in 2022 and accepting Buzzcocks’ induction into the Camden Walk of Fame on behalf of all members past and present in 2023. While working on a new album, the band continue to tour with dates planned in the US, Australia, New Zealand, Europe and the UK this year. Autonomy is a fitting testament both to the incredible road he has travelled and his endless positivity and enthusiasm for the journey ahead. Diggle sums it up, “I’m not trying to recreate the past, I’m trying to create the future.”


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