Philip Norman was born in London and brought up on the Isle of Wight. He joined the Sunday Times at the age of twenty-two, soon gaining a reputation as Atticus columnist and for his profiles of figures as diverse as Elizabeth Taylor, P. G. Wodehouse, Little Richard and Colonel Gaddafi. In 1981 he published SHOUT! A ground-breaking biography of the Beatles that was a bestseller in both Britain and the US. He has also written the definitive lives of Sir Elton John, Buddy Holly, John Lennon, Mick Jagger and Paul McCartney. His biography of Eric Clapton was published in 2018 by Orion in the UK and Little Brown in the US. His latest book WILD THING, biography of Jimi Hendrix, was published in August 2020.
Although he resists classification as a “rock biographer”, a musical theme pervades almost all of Philip Norman’s work. In 1983 he was named one of the twenty Best of Young British Novelists for his autobiographical novel THE SKATER’S WALTZ. His shorter fiction includes SPRING SONATA, a novella set in an Edwardian music hall, and WORDS OF LOVE, about Buddy Holly’s last hours, which later became a successful television play. His journalism has been published in three collections, THE ROAD GOES ON FOREVER, TILT THE HOURGLASS AND BEGIN AGAIN, and THE AGE OF PARODY. He has also written BABYCHAM NIGHT, a memoir of his childhood on the Isle of Wight.