Contact Jeff

Jeff Apter

I’m a writer, working amidst the splendour that is Wollongong on the NSW south coast. Inspired by Jerry Hopkins’ engrossing bio of the Doors, No One Here Gets Out Alive, I began tapping away at the keyboard in the late 1980s. At last count, I’ve written 30 books, either as author, co-writer or ghostwriter; my work’s been published all around the world.(Hello Finland! And yes, Bulgaria, I’m talking about you.)

My specialist subject — I use the term warily — is music. I’ve written biographies of such talented and sometimes tormented souls as Daniel Johns, Jeff Buckley, the Finn brothers, Jon English, Marc Hunter, Johnny O’Keefe and the three Young siblings, Angus, Malcolm and George. I’ve been fortunate enough to work with ARIA Hall of Famers Kasey Chambers and Richard Clapton. I’ve also helped with books from Mark Evans (the former AC/DC bassist) and Michael Browning (AC/DC’s first manager). Away from music I’ve worked with cricketer Michael Slater, soccer hero Tim Cahill and Paul Warren, the former captain of the Australian Invictus Games team. 

I started out as a magazine writer, spending four years on staff at Australian Rolling Stone. (That business card opened some doors for me.) I’ve encountered interesting characters up close over the years, everyone from Aretha Franklin to Helen Reddy, the Rolling Stones to Bob Dylan. I know the whereabouts of Natalie Imbruglia’s secret tattoo, while photographer-to-the-greats Mick Rock once asked my wife if she did upside-down yoga. (Long story.) Oh and I was once turfed out of a U2 show in Florida for, well, actually I don’t want to get into that now . . .  

My latest release is Don't Dream It's Over: The Remarkable Life of Neil Finn. Happy Mag praised the book, as did Loudmouth magazine and I also discussed it on ABC Overnights. I also appeared on Caroline Baum's Life Sentences podcast. My Keith Urban biography has just been released in North America, where it's been receiving terrific accolades.Bad Boy Boogie: The True Story of Bon Scott was  Book of the Week at ABC Adelaide and has also been profiled on — wait for it — ABC Sydney, ABC Darwin, ABC Hobart, ABC Perth, ABC Illawarra, ABC Qld Statewide, ABC Gold Coast, ABC Newcastle and ABC Canberra, among many other radio stations, podcasts and websites. Rod Quinn at ABC Overnights produced an excellent and comprehensive two-parter on Bon and the book, while in her (favourable) review for The Australian, Cheryl Akle wrote: 'Apter's signature style makes this an easy and utterly fascinating read.' (Thanks Cheryl!)

I share my life with a very patient partner, two delightful and talented children (they get that from their mother), a blue dog named Neela and a cat who answers to the name Rani. There’s a bird called Poe flapping about somewhere, too.

Photo credit: Sylvia Liber
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