Non Fiction | Dear Mr Pop Star | Derek and Dave Philpott

I’m delighted to be sharing my thoughts on tour today for Dear Mr Pop Star, the second book by ‘Team Philpott.’

For nearly 10 years, Team Philpott have been on a crusade, writing old-fashioned letters to pop stars, picking up on genuine ambiguities within their lyrics or often deliberately misunderstanding them for comedic affect.

As a result of their fans request to go to print, the first book was crowdfunded via a Kickstarter campaign.  This second book, Dear Mr Pop Star, is published by Unbound with a trade edition by Penguin Random House.

If you love a pun on words you will love this!

Dear Mr Pop Star Team Philpott

For more than a decade, Derek Philpott and his son, Dave, have been writing to pop stars from the 1960s to the 90s to take issue with the lyrics of some of their best-known songs. But then, to their great surprise, the pop stars started writing back…

Dear Mr Pop Star contains 100 of Derek and Dave’s greatest hits, including correspondence with Katrina and the Waves, Tears for Fears, Squeeze, The Housemartins, Suzi Quatro, Devo, Deep Purple, Nik Kershaw, T’Pau, Human League, Eurythmics, Wang Chung, EMF, Mott the Hoople, Heaven 17, Jesus Jones, Johnny Hates Jazz, Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine, Chesney Hawkes and many, many more.

Available to purchase in digital and hardcover formats.


With all the negativity that surrounds social media, Dear Mr Pop Star is a shining light …  for it wasn’t until Team Philpott built a website, put their letters on and joined Facebook that their campaign become popular and word spread, building a community.  How about that for the positive power of Facebook!

It’s not just the letters they wrote but also replies they received from the artists in Dear Mr Pop Star (alongside some letters with no replies but added for the humour).

Dear Mr Pop Star


I think the letters are very clever, not only using titles and lyrics to write the letters but also tying in older songs with modern/contemporary everyday life.  For example, a letter for a late 70’s song tying in with the cost of an excursion on TripAdvisor.

It doesn’t matter if you don’t know the songs/artists as you can still experience the dry wit and humour from the letters (which make sense).  I must admit I did know them so not sure if this gave added depth for me.  And they are funny … hilarious.  The letters brought me many moments of sniggers, chuckles and outright laughter.  I think my favourite has to be the missive to The Selector (but then the song has memories for me so I might be biased!).  That’s another thing I didn’t expect – the memories that surfaced.  I want to hear the songs again now!  I might see what’s on Spotify and make a playlist …

Dear Mr Pop Star is a book that you can dip into and would make a great addition to your emotional well-being.  Fab to have around if you need your spirits lifting. 🙂  A recommended read from me.

Dear Mr Pop Star Team Philpott

Derek and Dave Philpott are the nom de plumes of two ordinary members of the public, working with help from a small family and, crucially, a worldwide social networking community. Neither they, or anybody assisting with the creative aspects of this project had any connections with the music, entertainment, media or publishing industries whatsoever at the time of its commencement. Despite these humble origins, however, they now find themselves in the bizarre but enviable position whereby many pop stars and people within these circles are their friends “in real life’” (whatever that means!). Many artists consider “getting a Dereking” as a badge of honour, and, as one has participant succinctly put it-

‘’This is an ingenious and extremely inventive concept. You have given us a platform to answer questions that have been asked of us for years by our fans, and respond on a public platform of immense fun. You’ve created a weird and wonderful world loved and admired by 1,000s of people worldwide, and you have your own army of loyal fans. That pretty much makes you part of ‘us lot’ now!’’


Connect with Team Philpott


Twitter @DerekPhilpott

Visit Unbound for an extract and more information.


Read all posts in the non-fiction genre on Jera’s Jamboree.

Married with two sons in their early 20’s, I love my day job as an Inclusion Lead. I am passionate about early help, expressed not only in my setting but also as a member of Bournemouth’s Early Help Operational Board. It’s an honour to be working alongside others to instigate change and growth.

I’m also passionate about my love of reading, being out in nature and creating with crochet.

I’ve been blogging for seven years at Jera’s Jamboree.



  1. September 28, 2018 / 9:40 am

    Shaz!!. Even though our blog tour is GIGANTIC and one of the largest that anyone has achieved (so they say, whoever ‘they’ are!), we were still very careful as to who we invited and in your splendid case, as with so many others, our discretion has been vindicated. We have, we can now confide, been especially looking forward to your review, given that it’s been a delight corresponding with you in the weeks and months leading to this glorious piece – you have been supportive, helpful and enthusiastic, throughout. We adore that

    a) you recognise the positivity of social media that we bang on about so much in interviews!

    b) you will never listen to these songs in the same fashion ever. again.

    c) you picked up on that very deliberate and surreal juxtaposition between modern tech and that not around in 1972

    Yes, it is all about surfacing memories!

    OH… and…
    …a fan put the Spotify Playlist together last week

    Thank you for embracing our mad little world, a decade in the creation.

    It’s a been a delight

    Dave and Dad

    • September 28, 2018 / 10:07 am

      You sweet talker 🙂

      Thank you for the opportunity to dip into the past with laughter and a smile.

      Your launch sounds successful (yay!) and here’s to touching many more hearts and memories.

      • Dave Dawson
        September 28, 2018 / 10:17 am

        How did you know I was sucking on a Werther’s Original at the time???…Many more hearts and memories indeed :)..Bless you

        • September 28, 2018 / 1:42 pm

          Hahaha. Forgot to say a thank you for the playlist link. That’s awesome!

          • Derek Philpott
            September 28, 2018 / 5:11 pm

            We have diligent fans…they do most of the work for us:)

  2. September 28, 2018 / 4:28 pm

    This looks an awesome book. I feel some Christmas present shopping coming on 🙂

    • September 29, 2018 / 8:48 am

      Fab idea Suzie. I’m thinking you could turn the letters into a game (if the people knew the artists). Leave out the artist but quote the letters and see if anyone could guess who the artist is 🙂

      • Derek Philpott
        September 29, 2018 / 8:50 am

        That’s a brilliant idea

  3. Derek Philpott
    September 28, 2018 / 5:13 pm

    It’s unique and amazing:)

  4. September 30, 2018 / 10:07 am

    Great idea 🙂

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