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Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Required Reading


It seems to me that the stars have aligned to bring you the Autumn Almanac's worth of reading safe for punk rockers and book people alike... not that they're mutually exclusive. In fact, some of the most literate people I know are rock n rollers. I chalk it up to years of being an outcast, diving into the literature homework and fast forwarding to spending hours on buses, planes, trains and vans with lots of time to pass.. so why not read?

Denise & the Handsome One
Handsome Dick Manitoba and Denise Lento

The Official Punk Rock Book of Lists - by Amy Wallace, who is the lady who created the Book of Lists genre and punk rock's own King of all Men, Handsome Dick Manitoba. I've seen some of these lists and they are worth their weight in gold records. And many of the punk rockers can turn a phrase with the best of the literary rest.

Here are some of the name-checked and contributing punk rock people:
Debbie Harry's List of "People I'd Like to Fuck"
Patton Oswalt's List of Punk Rock Band Names Taken from One Day of Drudge Report Headlines
Nick Tosches' 10 Who Were Punk Before There Was Punk
Mario Batali's Magnificent 7: Pizzas of the World
Blag Dahlia of the Dwarves' 5 Things Assholes Always Say When They Want Something Free
Bob Gruen's Top 10 Most Photogenic Punk Rockers
Johnny Rotten's 22 Picks, Circa 1977
Jeff Ament of Pearl Jam's 8 Best Punk Rock Bass Players
J Mascis' 10 Favorite Fuzz Boxes
Gilby Clarke's 10 Best Punk Rock Guitar Solos
Tony Cocaine's 5 Tips for Punk Parenting
Captain Sensible's "Top 20 Recording Sessions That I Wish I'd Attended"
Jim Jarmusch's 25 Pre-Punk Films with "Punk Attitude"
Wayne Kramer's Lucky 13 Recent Readings
Sex Pistol Steve Jones's 13+ Things I've Stolen
Henry Rollins' List of the Beginnings of What Could Have Been Good Lists

Wayner Kramer
Wayne Kramer

eric outside goner
Eric Friedl, aka Oblivian - one example of the literary punk rocker, and one guy who's got a list in this book that I really really can't wait to read. Dude can write! We've talked about the C word.... college.... as in where did you go? what did you major in? Turns out Eric and I are both English majors from Southern California universities that make parents proud and where students know they can still party. I went to UCLA and Eric was at Pomona College, which boasts the killer radio station KSPC.

Actually, if you click on the smaller icons of these very same books at the very end of this post, you will be transported, through the magic of the internet, to pages on the websites of various publishers where you can purchase any or all of these books.

With the exception of Steven Beeber's book about Punk Rock Jews, which was published earlier this year (pictured at the bottom of this post)... each of these books is NEW and published TODAY. Well, they should be in bookstores now at any rate - all the online booksellers have them too, if you're like me and find bookstores to be dangerous places to have a credit card in hand.

bomp book ad punk 365 for blog

These are a couple books very near and dear to my heart - and yes, I've got photos in both of them. The story of BOMP! is particularly close to my heart, as I credit the late Greg Shaw together with Stiv Bators, Billy Idol, The Germs and Joan Jett for helping me have the career I wanted: behind the camera instead of behind a desk. Of course, there are others who were just as helpful, if not even more - they were always behind the scenes yet key people, who are all associated with the bold faced names checked above...

greg stiv frank

One of them is Suzy Shaw. Carrying on the Bomp! legacy and bringing forth the book about Bomp's early days - the magazine, the record store and the initial recordings. Suzy collaborated with Mick Farren on the Bomp story.

Last week, I foamed at the mouth right here on these very pages about Punk 365 by Holly George Warren. Just click back for a recap of that.

Any and all of these books would be a great holiday gift for anyone on your gift list... especially yourself! Each of these books looks great and is chock full of cool photos from the old days... except the Book of Lists, which is illustrated in great punk comic fashion by the cool Cliff Mott. If you wanna see some cool illustrations, click on Cliff's name!

SO - here are all the linked icons -- buy something, why don't you???

bomp book ad punkrock_72dpi
punk 365 for blog 11672602

I realized just now that it is Sting's birthday. The Police were a great punk rock band. They even sang about literature... name-checking Nabakov in Don't Stand So Close to Me. Happy birthday Sting. Thanks A LOT for that song "Born in the 50s" and for the Rainforest Foundation and for all the fun times with you and Trudie doing that Rainforest thing you do.

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