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Born Under a Bad Sign Signed by Ralph Steadman Signed Lettered 2004

Born Under a Bad Sign Signed by Ralph Steadman Signed Lettered 2004


PALMER, Tony; Ralph STEADMAN [Illus.] 

Born Under a Bad Sign

Lexington, KY/ Tucson, AZ: Isolde Films/Steam Press, in association with Petro III Graphics and Sylph Publications, 2004


8vo., half black cloth over marbled boards, lettered in red to upper cover, with contrasting black leather label lettered in silver running the length of the spine; end papers with illustrations by Steadman; pp. [xxii], 11-192, [viii], featuring tipped-in full colour illustration by the artist to p. [ix], along with numerous black and white illustrations throughout the text; presented in a custom-made clamshell case, lined in textured black paper, with contrasting back leather label lettered in silver to spine; together with original promotional flyer, original signed collage and silkscreen print ‘Pop Pedestal’; fine in most respects, a couple of small marks in places from transfer of ink (flyer, tissue protecting original artwork, rear paste-down); a couple of white rubbing marks to verso of case spine.  


Uber Limited edition, one of just 26 lettered copies, this copy G signed by both Steadman and the author Tony Palmer, together with an original signed print. The forward was provided at the time by John Lenon. 


Originally published in  1970 by William Kimber and Co., London, Born Under a Bad Sign is an account of the 1960s, a period which was for many, a ‘Golden Age’, in which music was an undeniable witness “to our true feelings of that time, unsullied by hindsight, uncensored by wishful thinking”. Among the artists featured in this celebration of creativity are Cream, Jimi Hendrix, The Who, Pink Floyd, and many others. Originally, the ideas stemmed from Palmer’s BBC film All My Loving about the music industry, for which he achieved considerable notoriety, in particular for its depiction of Hendrix masturbating with his guitar, and Townshend smashing his equipment to pieces. Palmer subsequently published this book based on his experiences. This edition includes  illustrations provided by Steadman, who portrays dozens of portraits of the musicians, and who Palmer compares to Doré or Hogarth inasmuch as one of the major satirical artists of their day. 


“Don’t expect coherence or the Ten Commandments. Don’t expect explanation or apology.”   


A lavish production, just as Rock n’ Roll as its content.  

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