- 95,00 kr
The dark moments of rock history fascinate and tantalize like the pathos of Greek tragedy. The bottom sinks lower, the air seems colder, the bad endings--when they are bad--seem beyond bad. The unlucky practitioners of our most thriving form of communal experience seem to hit rock bottom in ways only the most glamorous among us can--publicly. The stories remain obscure, half-seen in the shadowlands. In her familiar style, Pamela Des Barres shines light on the people whose art remains the background music to our popular culture.
Des Barres asks, "What comes first, the addiction or the rock and roll?" The first apparent rock-and-roll death occured on Christmas Eve in 1959, when Johnny Ace blew his head off in a game of Russian Roulette between shows. Buddy Holly's four-seater plane crashes. Marvin Gaye's father shoots his son. Kurt Cobain puts a gun to his head. The headlines tell it all: ROCK SINGER FACES MANSLAUGHTER CHARGE, JAMES BROWN ADDICTED TO PCP, BASSIST FOR BAND HOLE FOUND DEAD. The messed-up lives, the burned-out golden boys and girls, the violence, the route toward rock bottom--Des Barres has a line on the souls of the public figures who lived desperate private lives to entertain us all.
Having parlayed several heady years of rock groupiedom into her two dippy yet heartfelt memoirs (I'm with the Band and Take Another Little Piece of My Heart), Des Barres now offers a lightweight and largely predictable collection of rock's sorriest tales, interspersed with her own gushing opinions. American readers may be unfamiliar with the automobile crash of 1970s heartthrob Marc Bolan, or the slow and weirdly eccentric descent into drugs of Pink Floyd founder Syd Barrett, but Sex Pistol Sid Vicious's helter-skelter nosedive into heroin and self-inflicted pain is old stuff by now, likewise the brief lives and messy deaths of Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison. Des Barres's own amorous experiences should mean that the sections on John Bonham and Keith Moon, respectively the late drummers for Led Zeppelin and the Who, should crackle with authenticity, but they don't. Also, the author merely gets bogged down in a surfeit of biographical detail and hapless hero worship. While some of her subjects barely deserve their own chapters, the few scant notes in the introduction barely scratch the surface of the legendary badness that is Jerry Lee Lewis. A goodly portion of the hundred black-and-white photos feature thin, dissolute young men in partial stages of undress.