The Smell Of Wisdom

The Smell Of Wisdom

Every time I step into the musky world of an old bookstore and grand library, I encounter the Smell of Wisdom. The experience is always tranquil and healing. Time well spent in enriching my Soul.

Since young, every travel I make into a foreign country, I always make sure I visit old bookstores and grand libraries. It subtlely reveals to me the real culture of that country.

I have two libraries in my home – a pulp one (books) and a digital one (CD albums).

Books entertain my eyes and mind in terms of glorious explorations, historical discoveries and autobiographical lessons. I don’t read too much fiction. mostly autobiographies, management, finance, music and photography books.

CD Albums entertain my ears and brings back fond teenage memories and keeps me in touch with worthy new artists. The hi-fi music are sometimes appreciated as background music while I read or while I do my work. I love listening to albums as it transports me back to happy and wondrous times and memories when the albums were first released.

I devour around 5-10 e-books a month, at least 100 e-magazines a month. For certain great books, I may purchase numerous copies to give to deserving book-loving friends.

There are some treasured books in my library where legendary authors have signed the books; including the likes of Dame Olivia Newton-John, Steve Wozniak, Jack Kirby, Debbie Harry, Chris Stein, Roger McGuinn (Byrds), Annie Leibovitz, Jim Marshall, Bob Gruen, Henry Diltz, Baron Wolman, Ken Regan, Barry Feinstein, May Pang (John Lennon legacy), Dave Stewart (Eurythmics) Hillary Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Yousef Karsh, Ai Wei Wei, John Fogerty (CCR), Robert Kiyosaki, Rick Warren, Eleanor Coppola and many others,

I’m elated to have my name featured in the best-selling autobiographies of Dame Olivia Newton-John and May Pang. Thanks so much, Olivia and May!

This June (2024), I’m proud to be featured in Chris Stein’s long awaited memoir “Under A Rock”.

I joke with my kids, successful and rich people have book libraries in their homes, not gossip magazine or video game collections. They all recognise the beneficial value of reading good inspiring books and appreciate life-long learning.

Whilst an avid devourer of e-books from my local state library, I still buy good pulp books. My latest acquisition was a rare signed portrait photography book by the late legendary Yousef Karsh.

What goes in, must come out. I’m proud to have published four rock photography books under my belt (or is it pen?). They’re titled – “Eclectic Sanctum“, “Monochrome Manifestos: Rock Stars, Hawaii and Other Heavenly Encounters“, “Sonic Solitude: Wondrous Tales From The Amplified World” and “ACCESS: Into The Wilderness Of Rock & Roll“.

My fourth rock photography book – “ACCESS: Into The Wilderness Of Rock & Roll” (above image), in celebrating the 40th Anniversary of my rock photography journey.

My Book Library (above image). I’ve since lost the fight of keeping it organised.

My Music Library (above image).

When I visit a friend’s home, it’s always nice to see they have a book library or vinyl/CD collection, it tells me more about the inner workings of my friend. When you are in doubt about a person, look at his/her friends they keep. Or the books they read, or don’t. Or the music they listen to,

Over the decades, I’ve been buying interesting book-reading figurines to be displayed in my books library, providing a serene and fun learning environment (above image).

A section of my library with my countless Beatles books (above image). A good chunk are gifts from fab friends.

Books should be encouraged to be read at a young age.

More Beatles books (above image). I used to have labels on the shelves to demark subject genres but over time I’ve been (shall we say) “lenient” in my book placements.

The small bronze figure reading in armchair is the fictional sleuth Sherlock Holmes. Bought at his museum in Baker Street, London (above image). Everyone deserves to read good books.

Even the legendary warrior Kuan Gung reads good books (above image).

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My fashion hero, the late legendary Karl Lagerfeld is an avid book reader (above image). Awesome book collection!

I want to pay tribute to a beloved and legendary local comic institutionSilver Kris comic stall (above image) run by Mr. Liu Wei Kun. Probably in his 90’s now, he has an admirable purpose in Life, he has spreading the love of comics since the 1960’s. The smell of wisdom is indeed strong at his stall. Quality not quantity.

I remember following my older brother to Silver Kris at another location (wooden shack) to acquire the latest copies of Marvel Comics – reading bout the latest adventures of Fantastic Four, Spiderman, Avengers, X-Men, Thor, Sgt. Fury and the Howling Commandos and Daredevil. We were not into DC Comics that much.

Mr. Liu, in his wheelchair, STILL pursing his “one thing” (above image) at his non-descript compact stall in a quiet corner of a hawker centre.

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Interior view of Westsider Books in New York City, USA (above image).

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Great inviting front books entrance to Le Bal des Ardents in Lyon, France (above image). Makes you wonder what amazing mysteries awaits behind the door.

I even have BOOKS and COMICS used authentic US license plates (above image).

All You Read Is Love!