Friday, December 14, 2018

The Byrds Younger Than Yesterday

This is the fourth album by the Byrds, with Jim McGuinn (lead guitar/vocals), David Crosby (guitar/vocals), Chris Hillman (bass/vocals) and Michael Clarke (drums) joined by a number of studio musicians to help to build upon their 12-string, folk/rock sound with elements of psychedelia and jazz.

These elements are immediately apparent on their hit from the album, "So You Wanna Be a Rock'n'Roll Star". The 12 string dominates, but there is definitely a psych feel (growing out from "Eight Miles High") and the trumpet gives it a bit of a jazzy tone, with terrific counter melodies that enhance the song rather than overpower it. Bassist Hillman rises to prominence on this record, with writing credits and lead vocals on four numbers (he previously had only co-written one), including the Beatles-esque "Have You Seen Her Face". McGuinn returns for his more psychedelic take on their sound in "CTA-102" that has an extensive sound effect section and he co-writes the San Francisco-sounding, harmony-enhanced,  "Renaissance Fair" with Crosby. Hillman's "Time Between" adds some country influences, anticipating upcoming changes in their style, and Crosby closes side one with "Everybody's Been Burned", a nicely written tune which highlights his terrific voice and reminds me of some of his work with CSN&Y, such as "Guinnevere".

Side two opens with Hillman's trippy-pop, "Thoughts and Words", in which McGuinn experiments with a bit of backwards guitar, and Crosby also goes psych (again, maybe some Jefferson Airplane influence?) in "Mind Gardens", with layers of backwards instrumentation, and a bit of resistance from the other members who thought it was overly self-indulgent. They are back to their original feel with a very traditional Byrds-y take on Bob Dylan's "My Back Pages", which always served them well in the past, but simply reached #30 in the charts this time. "The Girl With no Name" continues with Hillman's country-ish feel and the album concluded with the McGuinn/Crosby composition, "Why", a fave of mine and previously released (in a different version) as the B-side of "Eight Miles High" - more incredible harmonies, melodies and 12-string work.

The CD has a number of extra tracks, starting with Crosby's "It Happens Every Day", a sweet, slow, harmony-drenched tune, followed by the uptempo folk/pop of Hillman/McGuinn's "Don't Make Waves", alternative takes of "My Back Pages" (with prominent organ instead of 12-string) and "Mind Gardens" (the acoustic guitar taking more dominance), Crosby's wonderful "Lady Friend" (excellent , superbly catchy tune in the "old school" Byrds style, with some extra instruments added on) and the CD comes to a close with the McGuinn/Hillman "Old John Robertson", which initially sounds like the Byrds with a country feel but throws in an odd bridge and ending just to keep you on your toes.

Pretty solid and stellar record all the way through for those who enjoy this kind of mix of folk, pop, country and pysch!

Ugly Things #49

Ugly Things continues to he the go-to zine for all things hip'n'happenin' from decades past - concentrating on the best of the 60's era, but also the coolest of the 70's and sometimes even beyond. Publisher Mike Stax (The Loons / Tell Tale Hearts/ innumerable other swingin' combos) contributes and also brings in excellent writers from around the world - Cyril Jordan, Greg Prevost, Laurent Bigot, Don Craine, John Hagelston, David Laing, Tim Stegall and many, many others.

This issue's cover story is on Manfred Mann, delving into their deeper cuts and back story, and also includes a wide variety of combos, such as the Knaves, the Quick, the Kwyet, Death of Samantha (an oddity, for sure), the Rolling Stones, Emitt Rhodes, to name a few. Of course, the plethora of reviews will send you runnin' to your local record store, your online specialist or at least your current wish list, with records, books, movies and more that you never knew before and now desperately need!

It's Ugly Things - of course you want it! Get it!

Thursday, December 13, 2018

recommended gigs

Thursday Dec 13 - Whiskey Breath, Michael Louis Austin, Russell Christian at Artifice
Thursday Dec 13 - TV Party Tonight at the Double Down showing Serial Mom with live music by the Negative Nancys

Friday Dec 14 - the Rhyolite Sound and the All Togethers with Paige Overton at 172 at the Rio
Friday Dec 14 - the New Waves at the Golden Tiki

Saturday Dec 15 - Daikaiju, Shieks of Neptune at the Dive Bar
Saturday Dec 15 - Doyle Von Frankenstein at the Beauty Bar
Saturday Dec 15 - the Unwieldies with Jeff Mix at the Huntridge Tavern

Sunday Dec 16 - the Reeves Brothers with Shanda and the Howlers at 172
Sunday Dec 16 - LV Blues Society Jam at Saddle'n'Spurs

Monday Dec 17 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Thursday Dec 20 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Evel Pie

Friday Dec 21 - Le Dominiki, the Unwieldies, the Hideaway at Evel Pie
Friday Dec 21 - No Que No at the Bunkhouse

Monday Dec 24 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Monday Dec 26 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Double Down

Friday Dec 28 - the Implosions, Jerk, the Maxies at Evel Pie

Mon Dec 31 - Tenacious D at the Joint at the Hard Rock
Monday Dec 31 - the Rhyolite Sound, Rob Leines at Evel Pie

Monday Jan 7 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Wednesday Jan 9 - Hank Von Hell at the Beauty Bar

Friday Jan 11 - the Dickies with Monster Zero at 172

Saturday Jan 12 - Melvins and Hepa-Titus at 172

Sunday Jan 13 - Howlin' King Crawdad at Saddle'n'Spurs

Monday Jan 14 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Wednesday Jan 16 - Mustard Plug and the Phenomenauts at the Beauty Bar

Monday Jan 18 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Double Down

Jan 17,18,19,24,25,26 and Feb 7,8,9 - Puddles Pity Party at Cleopatra's Barge at Caesar's Palace

Friday Jan 18 - 5,6,7,8's with Shanda and the Howlers at Fremont Country Club

Monday Jan 21 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Friday Jan 25 - the Supersuckers at Triple B
Friday Jan 25 - Le Dominiki with Leather Bound Crooks at 172

Saturday Jan 26  - the Gentlemen of Four Outs at the Golden Tiki

Monday Jan 28 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Wednesday Jan 30 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Double Down

Monday Feb 4 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Wednesday Feb 6 - Franks'n'Deans Weenie Roast at the Double Down with guests Monkey

Saturday Feb 9 - The Swamp Gospel with the Implosions at the Huntridge Tavern

Tues Feb 12 - Nashville Pussy at Triple B

Saturday Mar 9 - The Peculiar Pretzelmen at the Golden Tiki

What have I forgotten? Lemme know

Friday, December 07, 2018

Dead Boys - Night of the Living Dead Boys

In March of 1979, two nights of the Dead Boys (2 shows per night) were recorded at CBGB's, the last live shows of the original band, per the CD sleeve. Unfortunately, Stiv (supposedly purposely) sang a good portion of the set off-mic so that Sire (their label at the time) could not release a live album without the band's permission. According to the liner notes on this Bomp! Records release, the band was pretty shambolic, as well, and quite a bit of editing went into creating usable instrumental takes of the songs. Because of the vocal issue, when Stiv agreed to this release, he had to go into a studio and re-do all of the vocals (and, allegedly, the stage patter) with the help of a couple of willing groupies. So, how much of this is really a "live" album is up for debate, but the same goes for most live albums, apparently.

Whatever the case, it's a fun document, opening with a previously unreleased song, "Detention Room", which is vintage Dead Boys to the point of it being a mix of a few of their other songs (I thought it was an early version of "Son of Sam" until I realized that they had already recorded that song by this point)! Rudely dedicated to Mama Cass (who had recently died after choking on a sandwich), we get "Caught With the Meat in Your Mouth" followed by "All This and More", a potent "3rd Generation Nation" (much improved from the castrated studio take), and they show their 60's roots with their pretty straight-forward cover of the Stones' "Tell Me".

They show some different roots when they sing that they don't wanna be no "Catholic Boy", they almost go pop in "Won't Look Back", and bring it back to their original Ohio days for Peter Laughner's "Ain't It Fun", from their stint in Rocket From the Tombs (as well as the Boys' first LP, of course). If this is indeed a patchwork of more than one take then the engineers did a stellar job as this is a smoldering performance! "What Love Is" loses some of the harmonies that I always dug, but makes up for it in shoutin' exuberance and hot lead playin' by Cheetah and some fine, rollin' bass lines by Jeff Magnum, who really makes his presence known throughout, funnily enough since they once had to bassist. "Ain't Nothin' To Do" is proper punk rock, "I Need Lunch" is actually a bit slower than the studio version and then speeds up into a manic take, and they finish their set with a frantic run through of their "hit", "Sonic Reducer".

Apparently, there are a couple of versions of this record and the one that I have includes several songs from a Dead Boys "reunion" at the Ritz in 1987, although just Stiv and Cheetah from the original band appear (interestingly enough, since earlier "reunions" had the other guys and not Cheetah). Here, they're pretty loose, throwing in covers, opening with noisy "Route 66" and a shambolic "Hang on, Sloopy" (Stiv claimed that Rick Derringer was at the show, which got him talking about this and they just wing it) with Stiv rambling about Ohio during the song. He babbles a bit again as an intro to "It's All Over Now" (which was supposed to be their final song, but they did an encore and spoiled it! Of course, it should have been "The Last Time") and, after a long, kinda nonsensical monologue by Stiv, the band bashes'n'crashes to a finale with "Ain't It Fun" and vicious "Sonic Reducer".

The fidelity is good here, not great, but certainly more than listenable and the performances are pretty fierce. Good stuff from one of Ohio's finest bands!

Green Room (movie)

We just happened upon this 2015 film on Netflix and were intrigued due to the fact that the protagonists of the story are the member of a punk rock band. As most band movies can be a bit cringe worthy, I was skeptical, but wanted to check it out.

It turns out that the band is, generally, depicted pretty realistically, down to the fact that the members actually play and sing their own parts (two were already musicians, two learned). There are still some unrealistic bits in the flick, but that side was handled well.

The group happens into a gig at a Neo Nazi club, where they at first antagonize the audience by playing the Dead Kennedys "Nazi Punks Fuck Off" (with the female guitarist wearing a DK's t-shirt), but win them over with their own brand of punk rock. Unfortunately, after getting paid (hey, maybe the white nationalists aren't all bad!) they stumble upon a murder committed by one of the Nazis and everything goes to hell, with lots of gore-y mayhem and violence.

Not a high budget film, to be sure, but it does star Patrick Stewart as the leader of the Nazis and Anton Yelchin (from the Star Trek films) as one of the band members. Interesting premise and a nice mix of music and horror.

Firestarter - Livin' on the Heat

I first met the guys who became Firestarter when Teengenerate, a wild'n'crazed Japanese punk rock band, played in LA and discovered that they were well-versed in garage rock'n'roll as well as punk rock and knew everyone in the LA garage scene. I kept in touch with them and Fifi, Fink and Sammy (along with new drummer Jimbo) went on to form Firestarter, retaining their ferociousness, but adding a power-pop edge. Along with the melodies, though, the emphasis was on the power - this has some of the heaviest guitars you have ever heard on a pop record! This terrific combination lasted for a couple of records and the results are pretty freakin' amazing!

Huge, chunky guitar chords open their original, "The Beat Goes On", but when the vocals come in, it is true power-pop wonderment! Super catchy, hip guitar licks but never relinquishing the energy. This continues into "She's Red" (the girl's a commie, I think), a riff-laden pop-tune that reminds me a bit of the Records, "Judy Judy Judy" is another ridiculously catchy tune, and they sorta channel the Boys for "Automatic Hero". Really great, harmony/rock'n'roll guitar work here.

"Flying Guillotine" has a bit of a Buzzcocks feel - a little more punk rock with a bit odder melodic twists'n'turns - and "Keen Reaction" is absurdly sing-along/catchy, at least as much as you can do with their somewhat broken English. Crazily enough, the title track almost has hints of Bruce Springsteen among the memorable rockin' roll, but that might just be my imagination! "Modern Raids" is cool punk rock with hot-shot guitar work, "Radio's Are Dead" is pure pop, and then they do a song for me - no kidding! "Rich's Eyes" (especially funny since I wore sunglasses most of the time back then) is ultra-frantic, unadulterated rock'n'roll and a real honor for me to be represented by this number!

Back to anthemic rock'n'roll with "Hard Games", "Don't Mind" is more of a chant-along punk tune written by Fink (as opposed to Fifi, who authored most of the album), giving it a different feel, "Johnny Moped Was Right" is a choppy punker and the record concludes with "Pretty Number", a prerequisite pop song about desiring a girl you've only seen from a distance. 

These cats really knew how to combine the best of rock'n'roll throughout the years and here they really concentrated on the best of 70's hard rock, glitter, punk and yes, power pop. They do their homework and churn out truly creative'n'catchy songs! This is from the early '00's, but find it if you can!

"Rich's Eyes"
Rich's Eyes
Are clear as crystal balls
Rich's eyes just set my soul on fire
They say "go rock and roll"

Rich's Eyes 
As hard as diamond rocks
They're gonna shine on forever
Rich's eyes never give me no fuck
They're gonna kill those lame rock
(Fifi Firestarter, 2002)

Thursday, December 06, 2018

RIP Pete Shelley


Buzzcocks singer Pete Shelley dies at 63
 ---
I was hoping that this was s rumor. So young, so many great songs and still great in concert.

recommended gigs

Friday Dec 7 - The Gentlemen of Four Outs at the Huntridge Tavern
Friday Dec 7 - Redd Kross at the Beauty Bar

Sunday Dec 9 - Shanda and the Howlers and Squirrel Nut Zippers at Brooklyn Bowl

Monday Dec 10 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Wednesday Dec 12 - Johnny Zig at the Double Down

Thursday Dec 13 - Whiskey Breath, Michael Louis Austin, Russell Christian at Artifice
Thursday Dec 13 - TV Party Tonight at the Double Down showing Serial Mom with live music by the Negative Nancys

Friday Dec 14 - the Rhyolite Sound and the All Togethers with Paige Overton at 172 at the Rio
Friday Dec 14 - the New Waves at the Golden Tiki

Saturday Dec 15 - Daikaiju, Shieks of Neptune at the Dive Bar
Saturday Dec 15 - Doyle Von Frankenstein at the Beauty Bar
Saturday Dec 15 - the Unwieldies with Jeff Mix at the Huntridge Tavern

Sunday Dec 16 - the Reeves Brothers with Shanda and the Howlers at 172
Sunday Dec 16 - LV Blues Society Jam at Saddle'n'Spurs

Monday Dec 17 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Thursday Dec 20 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Evel Pie

Friday Dec 21 - Le Dominiki, the Unwieldies, the Hideaway at Evel Pie
Friday Dec 21 - No Que No at the Bunkhouse

Monday Dec 24 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Monday Dec 26 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Double Down

Friday Dec 28 - the Implosions, Jerk, the Maxies at Evel Pie

Mon Dec 31 - Tenacious D at the Joint at the Hard Rock
Monday Dec 31 - the Rhyolite Sound, Rob Leines at Evel Pie

Monday Jan 7 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Friday Jan 11 - the Dickies with Monster Zero at 172

Saturday Jan 12 - Melvins and Hepa-Titus at 172

Sunday Jan 13 - Howlin' King Crawdad at Saddle'n'Spurs

Monday Jan 14 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Wednesday Jan 16 - Mustard Plug and the Phenomenauts at the Beauty Bar

Monday Jan 18 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Double Down

Jan 17,18,19,24,25,26 and Feb 7,8,9 - Puddles Pity Party at Cleopatra's Barge at Caesar's Palace

Friday Jan 18 - 5,6,7,8's with Shanda and the Howlers at Fremont Country Club

Monday Jan 21 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Friday Jan 25 - the Supersuckers at Triple B
Friday Jan 25 - Le Dominiki with Leather Bound Crooks at 172

Saturday Jan 26  - the Gentlemen of Four Outs at the Golden Tiki

Monday Jan 28 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Wednesday Jan 30 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Double Down

Monday Feb 4 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Wednesday Feb 6 - Franks'n'Deans Weenie Roast at the Double Down with guests Monkey

Saturday Feb 9 - The Swamp Gospel with the Implosions at the Huntridge Tavern

Tues Feb 12 - Nashville Pussy at Triple B

Saturday Mar 9 - The Peculiar Pretzelmen at the Golden Tiki

What have I forgotten? Lemme know

Classic Blues Artwork From the 1920's - Calendar/CD

I have been collecting these calendar/CD sets for a number of years now and always look forward to the latest release. These days I often have some of the tunes on the CD, but there are always more surprises (every year they somehow find never-before reissued songs for the time period) and the calendar is chock-full of amazing artwork, ads and info on the amazing musicians involved.

This time out we get some comparatively more popular artists like Memphis Minnie, Blind Blake, Blind Lemon Jefferson, the Beale Street Sheiks and Charley Patton mixed with the likes of Papa George Lightfoot, Raymond Barrow, Lottie Kimbrough, Otto Virgial, Sam Butler and more. All of the performances are top-notch, though, with some amazing playing (mostly guitar based, but some piano-driven, banjo-led and more), great singing and plenty of raw charisma and energy.

I love this stuff and anyone who is a fan of the early days of the blues will surely dig it, as well. Highly recommended for the combination of music, artwork and info! A terrific series!

Sunday, December 02, 2018

The Swamp Gospel, the Holy Smokes and No Que No at the Double Down, Saturday Dec 1, 2018


I never got to see the Holy Smokes back in the day (although I was a big fan of the more-or-less later incarnation, the Lucky Cheats), I got to see them do an unofficial reunion at a party at bassist Luke's house and was excited to see them do more. So, of course, I set up a show with the Swamp Gospel as soon as I could and like-minded, Spanish-singin' roots-rockers No Que No filled out the bill.

The Gospel hadn't performed for a few months, but we pulled together some new songs, new sermons (and forgot some of the older ones!) and had new merch (thanks Jw!) and had a soul-savin' good time. We won over some new converts and cleansed some sins, just in time for the holidays!



(Swamp Gospel pic by Nikki Ruffling)

The Holy Smokes were indeed smokin' this evening, stockin' the flames with their garage/blues hybrid. Original members Jeffrey (harp/vocals), Luke (bass/vocals) and Joel (guitar) were joined by drum basher Gerry for a set of hip tunes from their two CDs (Never Give It Up and Live in the Garage) augmented by the likes of Bo Diddley "Pills", Billy Boy Arnold's "I Wish You Would" and an encore of the Stones' "Miss You"! These cats are quickly becoming one of my fave bands in town, and they say they are planning on doing more gigs so be on the lookout for them and pick up their records!




I didn't really know what to expect from No Que No - pretty much all that I knew was that they played roots rock'n'roll in Spanish and that ex-Tommyknockers Jomar was bashin' the skins for them. I thought maybe they would be more straight rockabilly, but the sound was really just cool rock'n'roll with a rootsy edge and solid musicianship. They don't really sound like anyone else in town and that's a good thing! I look forward to hearing more from them. (Sorry I didn't get more photos - guess I was just diggin' the sounds and drinkin' my drinks by then!)


Thanks to the Double Down, all the bands and the great, enthusiastic crowd for a super fun night! Look for the Gospel to return in the new year! Happy holidays!

Thursday, November 29, 2018

recommended gigs

Thursday Nov 29 - Atomic Jukebox at the Double Down with live music by the Pluralses and Cadaver Pudding

Friday Nov 30 - the New Waves at the Golden Tiki
Friday Nov 30 - 68 (the band) with The Devil Wears Prada and Fit For a King at Vinyl
Friday Nov 30 - Stagnetti's Cock at the Double Down

Saturday Dec 1 - the return of the Holy Smokes with The Swamp Gospel  and No Que No at the Double Down
Saturday Dec 1 - Retro Carnival from 11 am - 5 pm at Rockin Bettie with Shanda and the Howlers, Pyro Surfers, Cherry Rat, Tiki Bandits and Los Carajos

Monday Dec 3 - Jeffrey Koenig and the Bluez Angels at the Summit at Sun City Summerlin
Monday Dec 3 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Golden Tiki

Wednesday Dec 5 - Franks'n'Deans Weenie Roast with Three Rounds at the Double Down

Friday Dec 7 - The Gentlemen of Four Outs at the Huntridge Tavern
Friday Dec 7 - Redd Kross at the Beauty Bar

Sunday Dec 9 - Shanda and the Howlers and Squirrel Nut Zippers at Brooklyn Bowl

Thursday Dec 13 - Whiskey Breath, Michael Louis Austin, Russell Christian at Artifice
Thursday Dec 13 - TV Party Tonight at the Double Down showing Serial Mom with live music by the Negative Nancys

Friday Dec 14 - the Rhyolite Sound and the All Togethers with Paige Overton at 172 at the Rio
Friday Dec 14 - the New Waves at the Golden Tiki

Saturday Dec 15 - Daikaiju, Shieks of Neptune at the Dive Bar
Saturday Dec 15 - Doyle Von Frankenstein at the Beauty Bar
Saturday Dec 15 - the Unwieldies with Jeff Mix at the Huntridge Tavern

Sunday Dec 16 - the Reeves Brothers with Shanda and the Howlers at 172

Friday Dec 21 - Le Dominiki, the Unwieldies, the Hideaway at Evel Pie

Friday Dec 28 - the Implosions, Jerk, the Maxies at Evel Pie

Mon Dec 31 - Tenacious D at the Joint at the Hard Rock

Friday Jan 11 - the Dickies with Monster Zero at 172

Wednesday Jan 16 - Mustard Plug and the Phenomenauts at the Beauty Bar

Jan 17,18,19,24,25,26 and Feb 7,8,9 - Puddles Pity Party at Cleopatra's Barge at Caesar's Palace

Friday Jan 18 - 5,6,7,8's with Shanda and the Howlers at Fremont Country Club

Saturday Jan 26  - the Gentlemen of Four Outs at the Golden Tiki

Saturday Feb 9 - The Swamp Gospel with the Implosions at the Huntridge Tavern

Tues Feb 12 - Nashville Pussy at Triple B

Saturday Mar 9 - the Swamp Gospel with the Peculiar Pretzelmen at the Golden Tiki

What have I forgotten? Lemme know

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Fortunate Son - John Fogerty

Fogerty was, of course, the lead singer/lead guitarist for Creedence Clearwater Revival and has also enjoyed a successful solo career. In this, his autobiography, you get his viewpoint on the contentious ride of CCR and its aftermath as well as lots of personal insights.

As the book starts, he spends a good amount of time on his younger days, where he really grew to love music and where he became interested in the technical side - recording, engineering, production - as well as the musical side. He worked hard on his vocals as well as his guitar (and some keyboard work) and worked with several groups. Naturally, there was a lot of instrumental projects in the early days, since that was the fad at the time, but with the advent of the Beatles, vocals were essential. He dug the early American rock'n'roll, as well, and puts in a special mention of the Sonics and Paul Revere and the Raiders!

There were a couple of bands that he joined previous to the formation of CCR (who had at least two previous names, including the Golliwogs, which was used on their earliest recordings), and he did not start as the singer, but his ambition and talent put him in the forefront. He obviously - and famously - has bad blood between him and the other members and he responds to some of their accusations in this book and makes accusations of his own. He has little good to say about any of the other guys and continually complains about their lack of talent and the fact - in his eyes - that he had to show them what to play on guitar, bass and drums. Of course, a bad contract signed by inexperienced youngsters add to the animosity that he shows in the book.

Regardless, I do enjoy reading about his songwriting style and where ideas for some of his most famous numbers came from. He is rightfully proud of his accomplishments but he does border on braggadocio at times. He also gets a bit long-winded here'n'there (about things like hunting - does anyone really care?) and he does gripe'n'grumble quite a bit. He got screwed, for sure, but the book dwells on it - a LOT. Even writing about the CCR days, which should have been the best part of his life, he was bitter and angry and only got more so after the band broke up and he spent decades like this. I'm not sure how he made it through it all and really don't know how his wife handled it. It's kinda funny - she will talk about how wonderful he was and how helpful with the kids and all that and in the next breath say that it was the worst time of their lives and she almost left him. It sounds like he basically had a undiagnosed nervous breakdown.

But, even though he never truly rights the injustices done to him, he does come to terms with it all and, with plenty of help from his wife (he has her co-write part of the book), he sounds like he has adjusted and is even reasonably happy. Nice to hear after 300-some pages of misery.

I wouldn't say that this was an enjoyable read, but it does give a good indication of the man behind the songs. CCR will always remain an important part of my life and the melancholy is all part of the story.