An in-depth biography of “a major artist whose work is sometimes obscured by the shadows of Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen” (Craig Werner, author of Up Around the Bend: An Oral History of Creedence Clearwater Revival).
Despite his numerous hits and Grammy nominations—and his induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame—John Mellencamp remains one of America’s most underrated songwriters. In Mellencamp, David Masciotra explores the life and career of this important talent, persuasively arguing that he deserves to be celebrated alongside artists like Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young, and Bob Dylan.
Starting with his modest beginnings in Seymour, Indiana, Masciotra details Mellencamp’s road to fame, examining his struggles with the music industry and his persistent dedication to his midwestern roots as he found success by remaining true to where he came from.
From a cultural critic who has contributed to the Washington Post, Atlantic, and Los Angeles Review of Books and who “writes with the precision and integrity and humanity of a great journalist” (New York Times–bestselling author James Lee Burke), this thoughtful analysis highlights four decades of the artist’s music, which has consistently elevated the dignity of everyday people and honored the quiet heroism of raising families and working hard.