Listen Up! Kilburn writer’s tales of his sound engineer sibling’s experiences with rock stars to launch at Ace Cafe

PUBLISHED: 08:35 19 August 2019 | UPDATED: 08:35 19 August 2019

Writer and artist Chris Howard. Picture: Nathalie Raffray

Writer and artist Chris Howard. Picture: Nathalie Raffray


A Kilburn writer who penned his brother’s experiences within the music industry is launching the book in Stonebridge.

Chris Howard's Listen Up! is a ghost-written tale of the often secret and invisible world of his sound engineer sibling.

Grammy award-winning Mark Howard, eight years younger than his big brother, recorded music with dozens of world famous stars including Bob Dylan, Neil Young and was also responsible for Mumford & Son's first EP before they got famous.

The book, providing a glimpse into the relationship between producer and recording engineer, sold out in less than an hour and was a number one best seller on Amazon following its launch in Canada, where Mark now lives, in May.

The biking brothers are reuniting for the UK launch party at the Ace Cafe, in the North Circular Road, on August 25 from 1pm to 5pm. "Ace Cafe is the most famous bikers' cafe in the world" said Chris.

The launch coincides with Harley Day at the roadside hub where there are chances to buy a copy of the book or win one.

"My brother got melanoma in July 2017, a mole on his shoulder blew up into a huge blister. It was so sad, it was heartbreaking," said 63-year-old Chris.

"He was offered immunotherapy, which is offered in Canada, and the cancer's gone. It's a miracle he's alive.

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"I would have been so sad if he had died. This book is a celebration of his life."

Chris had long wanted to write his brother's stories but had a busy career in the car industry.

Now retired he writes and paints and put aside a spy thriller he was working on to focus on his brother's book, "because he was dying," he said.

"It took me a year to write. I wrote about the production side but had to include more stories to make it readable for everybody.

"Mark and I spoke on Facetime and he told me stories and I'd write them down.

"I had to take those stories and put them in some kind of order as they would come at different times as he would tell them. He worked so hard. The book is a dedication to him."

The boys were born in Manchester and while Chris remained a UK cititen, Mark applied for Canadian citizenship.

Chris added: "It's amazing to come from the working class and go to the top of the music world. Only a small number of people make it despite what you see on reality TV."

Listen Up! is published by ECW Press.

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