Saturday, October 29, 2011

Jerry Lee Lewis Lost and Found - Joe Bonomo

Joe Bonomo did a great job in his book on legendary garage rockers, the Fleshtones, so when I discovered that he tried his hand on the Killer, as well, I had to take a look.

Of course, I've been a fan of Jerry Lee Lewis ever since he came onto my radar with his over-the-top personality and high-energy pioneering rock'n'roll. Despite his status as one of the first waves of rock'n'rollers, he was robbed of his stardom due to the provincial attitudes of many (though I must agree that marrying his 13 year old - 14 the next day! - second cousin was a bit much) and he never quite recovered from that, despite a lucrative country career a decade or so later.

Because so much has been written about this bigger than life character, Bonomo focuses on Lewis' musical resurrections in the form of his Live at the Star Club record from the mid-Sixties and his country records from the late 60's/early 70's. Joe's passion for the music is readily apparent in his writing and he has certainly made me want to search out some of this music - particularly the Star Club album with the pre-"Tobacco Road" Nashville Teens backing him.

I've never been a big country music fan, though I have grown to appreciate more of the real stuff, but I am interested in hearing some of Lewis' work now. Jerry also did a Gospel album which I am dying to hear, though it is currently out of print, so it looks like I'll have to do some searching!

Once again, Bonomo does a great job with his subject and though Lewis declined to be involved with this project, he should be grateful that a fan is doing his best to spread the word of the Killer!