We ran out of Rocktober, but the books keep coming!


It’s November, and there’s still more to covet. Didn’t I do a good enough job coveting all Rocktober long?

Guess not. But in my defense, I spent the month trying to catch up and even get ahead a bit for my editing clients (which means NOW is a really good time to book me if you’d like an edit! I have dates at the end of November and beyond, but if you blink, you’ll miss them).

So here’s a roundup of celeb bios and memoirs and other stuff that’s all music-related.

Bruce, by Peter A. Carlin, is billed as being an intimate look at The Boss. Yeah, Springsteen, who was in my fair town recently. After being underwhelmed the last time I saw Bruce, I wasn’t sad I missed him this time. And I hate that I had to say that, but there ya go. Sometimes, you gotta.

Ke$ha, who I once saw on a New Year’s Eve special and was horrified by, is putting out an illustrated memoir called My Crazy Beautiful Life. I might have to read it, just to see what the fuss is about. Not only about the book, but its subject matter, as well. Maybe I’ve been wrong about her.

Slash has a new one out.

“Slash: An Intimate Portrait” (Insight Editions), a new 144-page hardcover book by Richard Bienstock, with photography by Robert Knight, was launched … October 4 at Mouche Gallery in Beverly Hills, California.

Joe Perry (yeah, THAT Joe Perry, you Aerosmith fans) apparently wrote the intro. Cool! But… didn’t Slash write a book of his own a few years back? Like…2008? And isn’t Joe writing one now?

The answer to both questions, friends, is YES.

And then there’s Phil Anselmo, the man who was once so very kind to me outside his tour bus and who filled me in on why my promised tickets and passes had just vanished. He’s working on his autobiography. He’s even got a deal for it, so now it’s a matter of him writing it and seeing if it can match up to his bluster. I bet it can. Phil won’t work well with an editor. Even me.

I gotta admit that I’m not a Danko Jones fan any more than I’m a Ke$ha fan. So this new book? Too Much Trouble – A Very Oral History of DANKO JONES. I’ll pass, thanks, unless a copy finds its way onto my nightstand…

This one hit my radar mid-month:

“Black Sabbath And Philosophy: Mastering Reality”, a philosophical look at heavy metal’s dark masters of reality, BLACK SABBATH, has just been published worldwide via The Blackwell Philosophy And Pop Culture Series.

Expanding beyond the world of books only (and the e-book is only 27 pages, at that), we have

A new one-dollar app and eBook tell the story of the making of BAD COMPANY’s 1979 album “Desolation Angels”.

The ebook is free! It’s apparently a chapter taken from another of the prolific Popoff’s books.

And, finally, more Van Halen, as well.

A new book, VAN HALEN: Exuberant California, Zen Rock ‘N’ Roll, by John Scanlan, is now available via Reaktion Books.

A book description states: “I hate the word maturing”, singer DAVID LEE ROTH once said. “I don’t like the word evolving – or any of that bullshit. The point is to keep it as simplistic, as unassuming, and as stupid as possible.” Examining Roth’s sentiment, Van Halen: Exuberant California, Zen Rock ‘N’ Roll follows the band’s pursuit of the art of artlessness, and describes how they characterize what historian Kevin Starr terms ‘Zen California’ – a state of mind and way of being that above all celebrates ‘the now’. In rock’n’ roll terms it stands for the unregulated expenditure of energy; for a youthful exuberance that seems destined to extinguish itself.

Yeah, that’s probably a year’s worth of reading. I haven’t seen any figures, but given the plethora of celeb bios and memoirs flooding the market right now, you gotta wonder if they’re making any money for their publishers. I remember six, seven years ago when they weren’t, and the publishers were all admitting it, too. They had to have the bragging rights of landing the celeb, and who cared if they lost money. It was all about those precious bragging rights.

And people ask what’s wrong with publishing? Why a climate was established in which so many self-published authors are now taking great advantage?


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