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Your top five (or ten) favorite music books.

brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
Kind of an updated version of an earlier thread because times and tastes change. 

What are your all-time top 5  (or 10) favorite music books and/or biographies?

It's super hard for me to go with just 10 but as of now my top 10 are:

Pete Townshend, Who I Am
My current favoriteI devoured this one!

Michael Azarrad, Our Band Could Be Your Life
An essential edition among my music books.

Keith Richards, Life
A must read!

John Lydon, Anger is An Energy
Inspiring and motivating!  No bullshit, no lies.

John Lydon, Rotten
Excellent stories of changing times.

Kris Needs, Dream Baby Dream, Suicide, a New York Story
Excellent in every way.  A strong glimpse of early 70's NYC and an incredible musical duo.

John Densmore, Riders of the Storm
Loved it!  Doors Unhinged is really good to and I got John to sign my copy.  Sweet guy, too.

Neil Young, Waging Heavy Peace
Marvelous though a bit scattered (a great song!)Neil's the real deal.

Bob Meir, Trouble Boys, The True Story of the Replacements
An excellent book about one of my all-time favorite bands that I found rather disturbing.

Keith Morris, My Damage
As real as it gets.  And what a cool guy.  Got to meet him briefly and bet my copy signed.

I wanted to add a Henry Rollins title since I have, and have read, 33 of them, but Henry is about way more than just music.












“In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
-James Allen










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Comments

  • Thoughts_ArriveThoughts_Arrive Melbourne, AustraliaPosts: 15,165
    Scar Tissue - Anthony Kiedis
    Inside Out - Nick Mason
    Come As You Are - Michael Azerad 
    Being John Lennon - Ray Connoly (still reading it but loving this)

    I own a copy of Life by Keith Richards, received it as a gift years ago as the person who bought it thought I was a Stones fan.
    I have not read it but might have to.
    Adelaide 17/11/2009, Melbourne 20/11/2009, Sydney 22/11/2009, Melbourne (Big Day Out Festival) 24/01/2014
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
    Scar Tissue - Anthony Kiedis
    Inside Out - Nick Mason
    Come As You Are - Michael Azerad 
    Being John Lennon - Ray Connoly (still reading it but loving this)

    I own a copy of Life by Keith Richards, received it as a gift years ago as the person who bought it thought I was a Stones fan.
    I have not read it but might have to.
    I've heard Kiedis' book is really good.  I might have to give that one a read!

    Life is great.  I was blown away by what a great story teller Keith is!  A friend of mine liked it so much that when he finished reading it, he went back to page one and read it straight through all over again.
    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • Thoughts_ArriveThoughts_Arrive Melbourne, AustraliaPosts: 15,165
    brianlux said:
    Scar Tissue - Anthony Kiedis
    Inside Out - Nick Mason
    Come As You Are - Michael Azerad 
    Being John Lennon - Ray Connoly (still reading it but loving this)

    I own a copy of Life by Keith Richards, received it as a gift years ago as the person who bought it thought I was a Stones fan.
    I have not read it but might have to.
    I've heard Kiedis' book is really good.  I might have to give that one a read!

    Life is great.  I was blown away by what a great story teller Keith is!  A friend of mine liked it so much that when he finished reading it, he went back to page one and read it straight through all over again.
    Looking forward to it.
    I could re-read Scar Tissue over and over again. What a life Anthony has lived.
    Adelaide 17/11/2009, Melbourne 20/11/2009, Sydney 22/11/2009, Melbourne (Big Day Out Festival) 24/01/2014
  • ST66483ST66483 Posts: 402
    I really like Please Kill Me - The Uncensored Oral History of Punk by Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain
  • Gern BlanstenGern Blansten Your Mom'sPosts: 10,890
    Remember the Thomas Nine!! (10/02/2018)

    1998: Noblesville; 2003: Noblesville; 2009: EV Nashville, Chicago, Chicago
    2010: St Louis, Columbus, Noblesville; 2011: EV Chicago, East Troy, East Troy
    2013: London ON, Chicago; 2014: Cincy, St Louis, Moline (NO CODE)
    2016: Lexington, Wrigley #1; 2018: Wrigley #1, Wrigley #2, Boston #1, Boston #2
    2020: Oakland1, Oakland2
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
    ST66483 said:
    I really like Please Kill Me - The Uncensored Oral History of Punk by Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain
    Yes, excellent book! 

    Klosterman is cool, I should check into this one.  Love the Kiss Cow cover.

    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • Gern BlanstenGern Blansten Your Mom'sPosts: 10,890
    Definitely check it out....great book
    Remember the Thomas Nine!! (10/02/2018)

    1998: Noblesville; 2003: Noblesville; 2009: EV Nashville, Chicago, Chicago
    2010: St Louis, Columbus, Noblesville; 2011: EV Chicago, East Troy, East Troy
    2013: London ON, Chicago; 2014: Cincy, St Louis, Moline (NO CODE)
    2016: Lexington, Wrigley #1; 2018: Wrigley #1, Wrigley #2, Boston #1, Boston #2
    2020: Oakland1, Oakland2
  • timdwillitimdwilli Los Angeles, CAPosts: 257
    A couple good relatively recent ones:
    Closer You Are: The Story of Robert Pollard and Guided By Voices - Matthew Cutter
    Meet Me in the Bathroom: Rebirth and Rock and Roll in New York City 2001-2011 - Lizzy Goodman
  • RYMERYME Wisconsin Posts: 1,817
    edited January 2019
    (Left) is a Waylon biography.  Got it from the merch tent (and a few t-shirts & a hat of course) at a concert of his in Janesville WI.  Rock County Fair 1996 on his Right For The Time tour. (I was18 yrs old at the time lol)  I stood in line for an hour after the show to get it signed and a handshake.  The other book needs no explanation.  Its a great book. ;)
    Post edited by RYME on
  • goldrushgoldrush everybody knows this is nowherePosts: 5,130
    I definitely agree on Life and Scar Tissue; they’re both great books that I’ve read more than once. Waging Heavy Peace takes some work but it is worth it!

    ‘Neil & Me’ by Scott Young is one of my favourite Neil books, and I also really enjoyed ‘Detours’ by Tim Rogers recently. ‘Slash’ by Slash was a lot better than I expected it to be as well.

    On the downside, I was given The Negative Dialectics of Poodle Play (a Frank Zappa biography of sorts) years ago - it’s so pretentious it’s bordering on unreadable!
    “Do not postpone happiness”
    (Jeff Tweedy, Sydney 2007)

    “Put yer good money on the sunrise”
    (Tim Rogers)
  • LoujoeLoujoe Posts: 1,777
    Just read .'punk avenue' by the guy from the senders. Usually takes me weeks to read a book. Read it in one night. 
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
    goldrush said:
    I definitely agree on Life and Scar Tissue; they’re both great books that I’ve read more than once. Waging Heavy Peace takes some work but it is worth it!

    ‘Neil & Me’ by Scott Young is one of my favourite Neil books, and I also really enjoyed ‘Detours’ by Tim Rogers recently. ‘Slash’ by Slash was a lot better than I expected it to be as well.

    On the downside, I was given The Negative Dialectics of Poodle Play (a Frank Zappa biography of sorts) years ago - it’s so pretentious it’s bordering on unreadable!
    I have a copy of Neil and Me.  I should read that one!
    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • Heavier Than Heaven

    and Scar Tissue

    Hammer of the Gods was a good one too.
    "My brain's a good brain!"
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
    Heavier Than Heaven

    and Scar Tissue

    Hammer of the Gods was a good one too.
    A lot of kudos for Scar Tissue here, looks like I need to read that one!
    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • brianlux said:
    Heavier Than Heaven

    and Scar Tissue

    Hammer of the Gods was a good one too.
    A lot of kudos for Scar Tissue here, looks like I need to read that one!
    It’s awesome. I might re-read.
    "My brain's a good brain!"
  • dankinddankind I am not your foot. Posts: 16,220
    Adam Horovitz and Michael Diamond (and special guests), Beastie Boys Book

    Patti Smith, Just Kids

    Kim Gordon, Girl in a Band

    John Fine, Your Band Sucks

    Greil Marcus, Mystery Train

    Lester Bangs, Psychotic Reactions and Carburetor Dung

    Peter Guralnick, Lost Highway

    Carrie Brownstein, Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl

    Neil Young, Waging Heavy Peace

    Louis Armstrong, Satchmo

    Timothy White, Catch a Fire

    Rob Sheffield, Love Is a Mix Tape (Talking to Girls About Duran Duran is pretty good, too)

    Chuck Klosterman, Fargo Rock City

    Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain, Please Kill Me

    Jerry Hopkins, No One Here Gets Out Alive

    Woody Guthrie, Bound for Glory

    Evelyn McDonnell and Ann Powers (eds.), Rock She Wrote

    Jeff Chang, Can’t Stop Won’t Stop

    Miles Davis with Quincy Troupe, Miles

    David Hajdu, Positively 4th Street

    Billie Holliday with William Dufty, Lady Sings the Blues

    Andrew Grant Jackson, 1965

    Pamela Des Barres, I’m with the Band

    Stephen Davis, Hammer of the Gods

    Mötley Crüe with Neil Strauss, The Dirt
    I SAW PEARL JAM
  • Everybody Loves Our Town: An oral history of grunge   by Mark Yarm
  • Indifference71Indifference71 ChicagoPosts: 13,644
    Clapton's autobiography is phenomenal.  I couldn't put that one down...finished it in a couple days.


  • HesCalledDyerHesCalledDyer MarylandPosts: 15,828
    I’ve been trying to find a decently priced copy of Peter Garrett’s (Midnight Oil) book “Big Blue Sky: A Memoir” but the decently priced part eludes me to no end. If anyone has any leads, please let me know.
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
    dankind said:
    Adam Horovitz and Michael Diamond (and special guests), Beastie Boys Book

    Patti Smith, Just Kids

    Kim Gordon, Girl in a Band

    John Fine, Your Band Sucks

    Greil Marcus, Mystery Train

    Lester Bangs, Psychotic Reactions and Carburetor Dung

    Peter Guralnick, Lost Highway

    Carrie Brownstein, Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl

    Neil Young, Waging Heavy Peace

    Louis Armstrong, Satchmo

    Timothy White, Catch a Fire

    Rob Sheffield, Love Is a Mix Tape (Talking to Girls About Duran Duran is pretty good, too)

    Chuck Klosterman, Fargo Rock City

    Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain, Please Kill Me

    Jerry Hopkins, No One Here Gets Out Alive

    Woody Guthrie, Bound for Glory

    Evelyn McDonnell and Ann Powers (eds.), Rock She Wrote

    Jeff Chang, Can’t Stop Won’t Stop

    Miles Davis with Quincy Troupe, Miles

    David Hajdu, Positively 4th Street

    Billie Holliday with William Dufty, Lady Sings the Blues

    Andrew Grant Jackson, 1965

    Pamela Des Barres, I’m with the Band

    Stephen Davis, Hammer of the Gods

    Mötley Crüe with Neil Strauss, The Dirt
    More great books and I few I will check out.  Nicely done, Dan!
    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • dankinddankind I am not your foot. Posts: 16,220
    brianlux said:
    dankind said:
    Adam Horovitz and Michael Diamond (and special guests), Beastie Boys Book

    Patti Smith, Just Kids

    Kim Gordon, Girl in a Band

    John Fine, Your Band Sucks

    Greil Marcus, Mystery Train

    Lester Bangs, Psychotic Reactions and Carburetor Dung

    Peter Guralnick, Lost Highway

    Carrie Brownstein, Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl

    Neil Young, Waging Heavy Peace

    Louis Armstrong, Satchmo

    Timothy White, Catch a Fire

    Rob Sheffield, Love Is a Mix Tape (Talking to Girls About Duran Duran is pretty good, too)

    Chuck Klosterman, Fargo Rock City

    Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain, Please Kill Me

    Jerry Hopkins, No One Here Gets Out Alive

    Woody Guthrie, Bound for Glory

    Evelyn McDonnell and Ann Powers (eds.), Rock She Wrote

    Jeff Chang, Can’t Stop Won’t Stop

    Miles Davis with Quincy Troupe, Miles

    David Hajdu, Positively 4th Street

    Billie Holliday with William Dufty, Lady Sings the Blues

    Andrew Grant Jackson, 1965

    Pamela Des Barres, I’m with the Band

    Stephen Davis, Hammer of the Gods

    Mötley Crüe with Neil Strauss, The Dirt
    More great books and I few I will check out.  Nicely done, Dan!
    Thanks, Brian. 

    That Beastie Boys Book was ridiculously awesome. I read the whole thing with a smile on my face, even while lamenting that my favorite Beastie is no longer with us to provide his perspective.

    I have Jeff Tweedy's book in the hole. I was going to read it next, but I have a feeling that it would be unfair to read the guy's book who asks his audience to be quiet at concerts after reading a dazzling book by guys who always asked their concert audiences to make some noise and participate -- including when it came to helping them make one of the best concert films ever, Awesome; I Fuckin' Shot That!  

    So I'm going with a book on America's prison system next to wind me down.
    I SAW PEARL JAM
  • eeriepadaveeeriepadave West Chester, PAPosts: 33,761
    Haven't picked this book up yet but kinda curious to read Laura Jane Grace's book.

    Tranny: Confessions of Punk Rock's Most Infamous Anarchist Sellout


    bf959b1f-9b77-457c-baf8-038776f33339_zps8a6a389d.jpg?t=1365722973
    8/28/98- Camden, NJ
    10/31/09- Philly
    5/21/10- NYC
    9/2/12- Philly, PA
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  • hrd2imgnhrd2imgn Southwest Burbs of ChicagoPosts: 4,305
    Steve Goodman: Facing the Music

    One of the most amazing and tragic stories in music history.


  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
    I just finished David Hepworth's Never a Dull Moment, 1971 The Year That Rock Exploded. Hepworth presents the argument that 1971 was the year pop music died (with the break up of the Beatles) and rock exploded. I wasn't convinced of this premise and there were a few sections of the book that dragged a bit for me but there were also many sections of this book that were highly engaging, fascinating, and well written. Also, Hepworth's breadth of knowledge of music and the making of it is impressive. Overall, a fine read and one I'll hang on to and refer back to.

    Although this one won't necessarily break into my top ten favorites, I liked it enough to mention and recommend it.



    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • cp3iversoncp3iverson Posts: 6,996
    This book is incredible.  The author spent 40+ years off and on interviewing artists who were on the tour, fans who were there, store owners in those towns, etc. to give a day by day account of the tour from hell.  I read this in two days.  Imagine touring during a polar vortex in a bus with no heat in rock n roll’s early days.  Plus the most in depth account of the final show and crash.  

  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
    I'm reading a really good one right now!  Eric Burden (of The Animals), Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood.  Great stories.  Forthright, honest, self-effacing, real.  Burden is the man! 


    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
     It would be almost impossible, maybe even slightly ludicrous to try to name one favorite music book, but if I were to, a definite contender would be Warren Zanes, Petty; The Biography. Zanes' book is a labor of love. Thankfully, Tom Petty gave Zanes free reign to write the book he (Zanes) wanted and Zanes, despite being a good friend, was honest and forthcoming with his words yet respectful enough to not at all make this work sensationalist or gossip filled. The writing is superb, the story is marvelous and the experience of reading this work is unforgettable. This will surely stand as one of my all-time favorite music book about one of our greatest (and most missed) song writers and musicians.  I was literally in tears when I finished this book because, like the life of the man himself, I didn't want the book to end.

    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • tempo_n_groovetempo_n_groove Posts: 24,645
    If you haven't read American Hardcore you need to.

    Great insight and depth to our great music scene.

    Man there are a bunch of good stories in there.
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
    If you haven't read American Hardcore you need to.

    Great insight and depth to our great music scene.

    Man there are a bunch of good stories in there.
    For sure!  I'm looking at the book as I type this.  Well, OK, I looked at it and then typed.  My typing kind of sucks, haha!

    Yeah, they did a fine job with the film as well.  I have the DVD and have watched it three or four times. 
    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,343
    Even though I've only gotten a few chapters into it, I have a feeling this one will easily make it into my top 10.  I ran across it the other day and just started it and already am hooked! A Spy in the House of Loud; New York Songs and Stories by Chris Stamey. Stamey has worked with Yo La Tengo, briefly worked with Alex Chilton, formed the dBs with Peter Holsapple and has produced several albums. The writing is excellent and the stories first rate!


    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










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