Trynka, Paul 1961(?)–

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Trynka, Paul 1961(?)–


Born c. 1961, in England; partner's name Lucy; children: one son, Curtis.


Home— London, England. E-mail— [email protected]


Music journalist, editor. Previously worked as a musician; also worked for Mojo magazine, London, England, reviews editor, 1996-99, editor, 1999-2003;Q magazine, London, England, editorial director;Guitar magazine, London, England, launch editor;International Musician, London, England, editor;New Projects at Emap, London, England, editor-in-chief.


(Editor)The Electric Guitar: An Illustrated History, foreword by Keith Richards, Chronicle Books (San Francisco, CA), 1995.

Portrait of the Blues, photographs by Val Wilmer, Da Capo Press (New York, NY), 1997.

(With Graham Marsh)Denim: From Cowboys to Catwalks: A Visual History of the World's Most Legendary Fabric, Aurum (London, England), 2002.

(Editor-in-chief)The Beatles: Ten Years That Shook the World, foreword by Brian Wilson, Dorling Kindersley (London, England), 2004.

Iggy Pop: Open Up and Bleed, Broadway Books (New York, NY), 2007.

Contributor to various publications, including Elle, Independent, Guardian, and Blueprint.


Paul Trynka is a music journalist and an editor who is probably best known for his time spent at the helm of rock-and-roll music magazine Mojo, where he spent three years as the review editor before taking over the magazine in 1999. During his tenure at the magazine, subscription numbers more than doubled, ultimately topping out at approximately 108,000 worldwide. Trynka has written and/or edited a number of books and articles, primarily pertaining to the music industry. His work has been published in periodicals such as Elle, Independent, Guardian, and Blueprint. In Portrait of the Blues, which was illustrated with photographs by Val Wilmer, Trynka writes about a number of musical artists who were involved with blues music in the mid-1960s, talking about their influences and the ways in which their lives interwove. Artists covered include Keith Richards, Muddy Waters, and Willie Dixon. Mike Tribby, in a review for Booklist, dubbed the book "fine browsing while reflectively listening to one or more of the artists covered."

Iggy Pop: Open Up and Bleed is an in-depth, detailed look at the life and career of Iggy Pop, born James Newell Osterberg in a town just outside Detroit, Michigan, and the first full-length biography of the singer. Trynka delves into the rock star's past and captures his musical ambition, his drug obsessions, and his legal issues, having conducted numerous interviews in an effort to chase down the truth about the enigmatic singer. Matthew Moyer, reviewing for Library Journal, called the book "a beautifully penned summation of Iggy's eclectic career, drawing upon a wealth of new interviews and a life full of the sort of rock myth about which music writers can only dream." Brian J. Bowe, writing for the Harp Magazine Web site, praised the book, stating: "There's much depth in Trynka's telling of the Iggy story. Iggy Pop is filled with poignancy and sadness." Writing for Time Out London Online, Martin Horsfield commented on Trynka's approach, noting that "he lets the participants do the talking, even pitching up at an Ann Arbor high-school reunion to meet Iggy's school pals who remember him, pointedly, as someone who tried hard but ‘never quite made it’."

In a review for the Guardian Online, David Sinclair had a mixed opinion, and dubbed the book "a tale that incorporates just about every depravity you could wish for in a rock biography: indecent exposure, under-age sex, self-mutilation, psychiatric disorder, drug abuse, infidelity, betrayal, violence, death and David Bowie. All of which is comprehensively logged by Trynka, in a dry and somewhat distanced writing style, which lends scholarly weight to the subject, but rather fails to capitalise on the raw drama." Writing for Booklist, David Siegfried credited Trynka with "rescuing coherence from a tale of thrills, contradictions, debauchery, betrayal, and (ultimately) redemption" through his Iggy Pop biography. A contributor for the New York Times Book Review remarked upon Trynka's tendency to overemphasize what should have been considered run-of-the-mill events, and also a hard sell on certain recordings, but praises the coverage of his youth, stating that "he discovers a genuinely surprising side of his subject: an astute young statesman who was voted most likely to succeed by his junior high classmates."

Trynka is also the author of Denim: From Cowboys to Catwalks: A Visual History of the World's Most Legendary Fabric, which he wrote with Graham Marsh. He also served as editor on several books, including The Electric Guitar: An Illustrated History, which has a foreword by Keith Richards, and The Beatles: Ten Years That Shook the World, with a foreword by Brian Wilson.



Booklist, October 1, 1997, Mike Tribby, review of Portrait of the Blues, p. 300; March 1, 2007, David Siegfried, review of Iggy Pop: Open Up and Bleed, p. 51.

California Bookwatch, June, 2007, review of Iggy Pop.

Guardian, March 24, 2007, David Sinclair, "Lust for Life," review of Iggy Pop.

Harp Magazine, May 2007, Brian J. Bowe, review of Iggy Pop.

Library Journal, April 1, 2007, Matthew Moyer, review of Iggy Pop, p. 95.

New York Times Book Review, October 28, 2007, "Music Chronicle," p. 20.

Publishers Weekly, February 19, 2007, review of Iggy Pop, p. 162; October 29, 2007, review of Iggy Pop, p. 51.

Time Out, March 19, 2007, Martin Horsfield, review of Iggy Pop.


Paul Trynka Home Page, (December 6, 2007).

Telegraph Online(London, England), (March 18, 2007), Andrew Perry, review of Iggy Pop.