Nominated for the 2019 Association for Recorded Sound Collections Awards for Excellence in Historical Recorded Sound Research

‘If there was an award for the role of Godfather of Americana in the UK, serious consideration would have to go to Iain Matthews … It’s all there in [his] excellent autobiography, a great look at the harsh reality of the musician’s life – through the eyes of someone who has really lived it.’ Rick Bayles, Americana UK (Read full review here)

‘Matthews conjures up a remarkable account of a life lived in the service of good music. The text is lively and honest, sometimes brutally frank. The candour and authenticity shine through, when he has some success you cheer for him, when his world turns upside down you feel his frustration. Highly rated and recommended, Thro’ My Eyes is the best music read I’ve come across in a very long time.’ – Simon Jones, fRoots

‘A great read, from the enticing artifice of LA to the barrooms of Seattle, from New York (Lou Reed sings Matthews’ song ‘Call The Tune’ to him and says “Ian… I’m a fan”) to the Netherlands and newfound happiness. This is the story of a man who loves music, stretching himself to excellence.’ – Richard Knight, Shindig

‘He’s been through the highest highs—a #1 UK single (and substantial US hit) with a cover of Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock” and a #13 US solo hit in 1978 with “Shake It”—but also the lowest lows, couch-surfing when he’s been between labels, jobs, and relationships. This swing between the extremes isn’t rare for musicians, but it’s not often told as well as it is in Matthews’s account. It’s plain-spoken; detailed about most phases of his career; and told with a personal flavor uncommon in books done with a collaborator. It’s highly recommended both for its historical value and as a quick-paced, absorbing reading experience.’ – Richie Unterberger’s Top Twenty Rock Books of 2018 (Read full list here)

‘What sets this bio apart and what makes it worth reading is Matthews’ relentless openness, to himself and his very personal problems. You never have the feeling that he is covering up breaks or concealing depression and communication problems, and that is precisely what makes the book and Matthews as a person so credible and understandable. The musician Iain Matthews was unknown to me before this book except for a few highlights. After reading it, I am certain that I have a lot of catching up to do.’ Folker

‘A terrific book. It does a great job of balancing the musical with the personal. It doesn’t shy away from the mistakes made or the times shyness made Iain behave badly. As a consequence he comes across as a fully rounded character, which makes us want to see how his story comes out. Though I feel like I already knew Iain pretty well, I came out of the book knowing him even better – as if, in that Joe South song that I’m quite fond of, I’d truly walked a mile (or a few thousand miles) in his shoes. One of the many strengths of the book is that Iain never tries to put himself in a box or sum himself up in 25 words or less, he lets himself emerge in three dimensions, even when there are contradictions. If I have any complaint, it’s that it left me wanting more, it could have been twice as long and still not filled me up.’ Lewis Shiner, author of Glimpses

‘Informative, kind and occasionally myth-busting. A must read.’ Nigel Schofield, author of Fairport on Fairport

‘A warts and all memoir, which takes us on a journey from an early Northern childhood in both Scunthorpe and Barton-upon-Humber, through to the bright lights of Piccadilly Circus and Carnaby Street in the ‘Swinging Sixties’, and on through his earliest involvement in music, to his middle years in the States and more recently that of mainland Europe. Though the story takes us from one exciting episode to another, there’s also an inherent sadness that looms in the shadows. Through the decades, we see a singular artistic bent and a desire to make good music and write great songs, both alone and in the company of others, a pursuit that continues to this day.’ Allan Wilkinson, Northern Sky (Read full review here)

‘I read it through in one day. Sometimes I cried, sometimes I laughed, sometimes I thought, damn, why did you do that!? A great memoir with lots of amazing stuff. Did you know that Richard Thompson turned down the offer to join the first version of The Eagles?’ Ulf Dahlheim, Journalist, Trondheim, Norway

‘I thoroughly enjoyed it from cover to cover, what a really excellent read, incredibly well written, remarkably open and honest, and very nostalgic if you are roughly the same age as Iain (which I am give or take two years). Kind of like a travelogue of 50 years of buying IM albums.’ Ron Yaxley, Archivist

‘I really enjoyed the book. Loved the way the songs dovetailed into the story, giving a very positive view of Iain as a songwriter. There was stuff (mostly in the US) that I didn’t know so well, so it was informative as well. I admire the bravery in tackling the whole thing.’ Andy Roberts, Plainsong

‘It’s a great story, honest and displays a love for music and songwriting with all its ups and downs and highs and lows and anxieties.’ Eric Devries, Matthews Southern Comfort

‘A terrific read, really well written and very honest (for example about the break up of MSC). Highly recommended.’ Jerry Lamberth, Fan, UK

‘I grew up as a NY Rangers season ticket holder. On May 8th, 1979, they had a semi-final home playoff game against the Islanders. Iain was playing at the Lone Star Cafe in Manhattan the same night, featuring the Stealing Home album that most of us remember was in blue vinyl. Anyway, I went to the concert, and gave away my hockey tickets. Best decision I ever made, one of the most memorable shows I’ve seen him play. The book was amazing, highly recommended.’ Ron Kurzweil, Fan, USA