Bobbys autobiography, telling the story of his early life, his partnership with Tommy, and his conversion to Christianity.
The chapters are:
Forward by Tommy Cannon – See below
1. Our Bobby – His birth and early life
2. Brylcreem and Brothel Creepers – Secondary School
3. Clock-on Tommy – Working life, his first marriage, meeting Tommy and starting working the clubs
4. The professionals – Turning professional and his second marriage
5. The man from Oxfam – Becoming a comedy act and starting to make it big
6. The fame years – Hitting the heights of their career
7. Freefall – How the fame, money and adulation changed him
8. Journey into new life – Becoming a Christian
9. Miracles never cease – How being a Christian has helped him, and Tommys conversion
Afterword – Life after My Life – An update in the second edition.
Second Edition published by Hodder and Stoughton General; 1995; ISBN: 0340642076
Fancy me, Tommy Cannon, writing a foreword about a book. Well, what can I say? Nothing! Becuase I have never written one before.
No, seriously, I know this will give me great pleasure to write, because it is about my partner and friend Bobby Ball.
Where do I start? Well, I suppose the best place to start is at the beginning. I first met Bobby at the Boden Trailers engineering factory in Oldham. I was the new boy standing by the clocking-in machine, when in came this little character and said ‘Hello, cock.’ He was the first and only person to speak to me out of five hundred men. By the way, I make no excuses for the terminology of the word ‘cock’ because in Oldham it means pal or friend. And this friendship has lasted for thirty years.
To talk about Bobby before he became a Christian isn’t easy. The moods he had at the time were unbearable. He found it difficult to talk to me about what was troubling him, so I in turn wouldn’t talk to him. After several days I would go and say something daft to break the tension. I know a lot of it was to do with us becoming ‘stars’ (for the want of a better word) and the immense pressure that we were under. Also material things became more important than real life itself. Well, that’s enough of the past. He has now come out of the dark tunnel and into a bright light.
In 1986 Bobby became a born-again Christian. To write about the change in him would take me forever, but I thought he was a crackpot when he first told me and obviously I found it hard to believe. The result is that we are now true friends, closer than brothers. He is easier to work with and if I have any problems he not only listens but he also tries to help. That is some change, I can tell you!
I see the future as very bright indeed and we can only grow from strength to strength.
Now a little about myself. I also have made a commitment to God and have become a born-again Christian. It is the biggest change in my life, and I have to tell you it’s FANTASTIC!
I am very proud to have put forward these few words for this book. It will not be remarkable for its literary style but for the simple truthfulness of a man who made a commitment that changed his life. Anyone reading this book, Christian or not, will find it fascinating, and it will add weight to Christianity.