**WINNER OF THE NME BEST BOOK AWARD** 'This book is going to try and get as close as possible to the full story of what informed the noise of The Streets. Obviously that's something I should be fairly well-qualified to know about, and I'm going to be as honest as the publisher's lawyers will allow.' With the 2001 release of The Streets' debut single 'Has It Come To This?' the landscape of British popular music changed forever. No longer did homegrown rappers have to anxiously defer to transatlantic influences. Mike Skinner's witty, self-deprecating sagas of late-night kebab shops and skunk-fuelled Playstation sessions showed how much you could achieve simply by speaking in your own voice. In this thoroughly modern memoir, the man the Guardian once dubbed 'half Dostoevsky ...half Samuel Pepys' tells a freewheeling, funny and fearlessly honest tale of Birmingham and London, ecstasy and epilepsy, Twitter-fear and Spectrum joysticks, spread-betting and growing up. He writes of his musical inspirations, role models and rivals, the craft of songwriting and reflects on the successes and failures of the decade-long journey of The Streets.
Mike Skinner was born in North London and grew up in West Heath, Birmingham. He started listening to hip-hop aged eight, with the Beastie Boys' Licensed to Ill, and began writing songs aged fifteen. Later he moved to Brixton, London and in 2001 signed a five album record deal as The Streets. The Streets' first album 'Original Pirate Material' was nominated for both The Mercury Prize and Best Album at the BRIT Awards. Skinner went on to record tracks such as 'Dry Your Eyes' and 'Fit But You Know It', which became instant classics.In 2011 Skinner released his fifth album 'Computers and Blues' to critical acclaim, and announced he would be putting The Streets on hiatus, to work on other projects.