Nina Antonia

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Portrait of Nina Antonia by CJ

Nina Antonia (born Nina Antonia Benjamin 1960 in Liverpool) is an English music journalist, author and former singer. She has written articles and books about Peter Doherty, Johnny Thunders, the New York Dolls, The Only Ones and a memoir of glam star Brett Smiley entitled 'The Prettiest Star'.[1] She has also contributed to Classic Rock, Mojo & Uncut, as well penning liner notes for a variety of artists including Lou Reed, Nico, The Stooges, Vince Taylor, Link Wray and Wanda Jackson.

She was previously a member of the band The Mogodons with her then husband Christopher "Kris" Guidio, under the name Nina Guidio.[2]

A selection of her work can be found on Rock's Back Pages.

Antonia is also featured in the Sundance nominated documentary ‘New York Doll’ alongside Morrissey, Mick Jones and Iggy Pop and can be seen in Danny Garcia’s poignant documentary ‘Looking For Johnny’. As well as appearing on Radio One and Radio Six, Nina has performed at spoken word events and enjoyed a retrospective of her work at the Barbican curated by Jay Clifton. Clifton commented 'The special value of Nina's oeuvre lies not so much in her subjects, but in her personal commitment to both the documentation of them and a search for the truth about both their character and their cultural significance. Like the best writers, she begins from personal fascinations. But with a balance of personal feelings and objective contemplation, combined with a fluid literary style, she writes books that resonate beyond the parameters of the surface material.' In 2013, Antonia lectured on Glam at Tate Liverpool.[3]

Nina's first book Johnny Thunders...In Cold Blood (Jungle Records, 1987) which has been in print for over 25 years, was hailed by the New Musical Express as 'Gorgeously Sordid' and awarded four stars. In 2012, the book was optioned to a Hollywood production company.[4] A de luxe Italian translation of the Thunders book appeared in late 2015 from Pipeline Books.

In March 2015, Antonia's classic 'The One and Only: Peter Perrett, Homme Fatale' was re-published by Thin Man Press. The new, expanded edition was hailed as 'a ravishing read'[5] and 'an engrossing account'.[6] Reviewer Gus Ironside, writing in Louder than War' suggested that Nina Antonia merits a far higher media profile but has been 'excluded from the "Boys' Club" of mainstream rock journalism'.[7] Antonia appeared in conversation with Perrett at the Albert Hall to coincide with the new edition.

In July 2014, Thin Man Press published 'From Albion to Shangri-La' by Peter Doherty, edited by Antonia who transcribed the content from Doherty's hand-written journals. Doherty penned the preface to the book in which he remarked, 'Seen Nina write, she riots'. International Times celebrated Antonia's contribution in a review: 'Nina Antonia, Peter Doherty's understanding editor and literary soulmate...aids and abets his literary rebellion'. In 2016, Nina had her first supernatural piece ‘South-West 13’ published in an Egaeus Press anthology ‘Soliloquy for Pan’ which sold out within days. She has continued to contribute to Egaeus, penning a novella length essay ‘How Shall Dead Men Sing’ about Lord Alfred Douglas and Oscar Wilde. Another essay ‘Bosie and The Beast’ appeared in Fenris Wolf 8, in 2017. Nina’s first supernatural novel ‘The Greenwood Faun’ is due for publication via Egaeus in September 2017.

Selected works[edit]

  • Johnny Thunders...In Cold Blood (Cherry Red Books, 1987)
  • The One and Only: Peter Perrett, Homme Fatale (SAF Publishing, 1996)
  • The New York Dolls – Too Much Too Soon (Omnibus Press, 2005)
  • The Prettiest Star: Whatever Happened to Brett Smiley (SAF Publishing, 2006)
  • From Albion to Shangri-La (Transcribed and edited by Antonia) by Peter Doherty (Thin Man Press, 2014)
  • The One & Only: Peter Perrett, Homme Fatale by Nina Antonia (Thin Man Press 2015)



External links[edit]