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Fool the World: The Oral History of a Band Called Pixies Paperback – March 21, 2006


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; 1st edition (March 21, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312340079
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312340070
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #993,653 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Anecdote-filled and definitive, Fool the World is an eyewitness account of the Pixies' tumultuous career and their subsequent reinvention of underground rock." Q Magazine --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Josh Frank is a pop culture dramatist. A director, producer, and writer of plays and books, he currently has a number of projects in development. He is twenty-nine years old and lives between Austin, Texas and New York City.

Caryn Ganz is an associate editor at Spin magazine. Her writing has also appeared in the New York Post, Entertainment Weekly, Seattle Weekly, and Mixte. She lives in Manhattan.


More About the Author

'Josh Frank is a Writer, Producer, Director and Composer. He has penned numerous Plays (including an authorized adaptation of Werner Hergoz's 'Stroszek') Screenplays (including an adaptation of Mark Vonnegut's The Eden Express') and Musicals (including The Jonathan Richman Musical). He is also the Author of 'Fool The World', the definitive Oral History of the band the Pixies (St. Martins Press USA/Virgin Books U.K.) and "In Heaven Everything Is Fine- The Lost History of Peter Ivers and New Wave Theater."

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Very candid and enjoyable read.
Richard Nieto
Certainly the spate of Pixies' reunion tour tie-in products has done some of the work in quenching the thirst of the die-hards.
M. Galkin
I am a huge Pixies fan and I enjoyed reading this entire book.
Kathleen H.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Gabbylilt on February 16, 2006
Format: Paperback
While attempting to finish reading the abysmal Gigantic by John Mendelssohn I was overjoyed to find this book available - in Australia no less. It is all I hoped it would be.

Before starting the book I was worried that despite my love for the Pixies it might be a slightly boring read. Having read and loved Please Kill Me, my rock story scale had been set quite high for gapping pits of agony - but I needn't have worried. This is a great story. The most unlikely words to find in a rock biography were used - charming, high work ethic, normal and they just endeared the members of the Pixies to me all the more.

Interviewees Chas Banks, Joe Harvard, James Iha, Ivo Watts- Russell and Gary Smith, amongst many others, offer their insight to the band and help produce a vivid picture of their history.

I have listened to the Pixies on average at least once a week for the past 18 years - not that I don't listen to other things as well, its just that nothing else fills certain niches in my heart and soul like they do - and to discover that the people making the music are people that I would enjoy having in my living room is an absolute joy.

gabby_talmadge@yahoo.com
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Diane on July 31, 2006
Format: Paperback
Fool the World is an excellent account of the birth, death and reincarnation of a band called The Pixies. A band that is one of the most important and influential yet underated bands in the history of rock n roll. Without the Pixies there would be no Nirvana, no White Stripes, no Screamo. For better or for worse they are a band that you need to know about and understand. The way that Fool the World is put together is brilliant. Interview segments from people like Courtney Love, J. Mascis, as well as band members themselves add the colour to the picture. There is also a directory of who's who for easy reference. Who else but someone who was there could remember a quote like "Fist I'm going to piss like a race horse and then dance like a black woman." The old magazine interviews with producer Steve Albini were wonderful to read. The fact that Kristin Hersh was dying to get the Pixies onto 4AD because she felt lonely being the only Yank on a Brit label is hilarious and finding out,in his own words, that Ivo Watts-Russell signed certain bands after being stuck in traffic with their tape is genius. Who would know those things except people that were there when it happend. Music fans, Pixies fans, and fans of pop culture check out this book.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By P. Benedict on September 6, 2006
Format: Paperback
This book's strengths far outweight its weaknesses. True, the flow is somewhat disjointed, Throwing Muses and its members get too much coverage, and the copy editing is somewhat sloppy. Nonetheless, the depth of Pixies coverage is amazing. I've been listening to them since Surfer Rosa came out, but they've always been an inscrutable band lyrically, musically, and in interviews. Frank's collection opens the curtain, and gives us a peek into the life and history of a band.

I enjoyed this book immensely.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By R. Dixon on January 8, 2009
Format: Paperback
This may not be the best written book about the Pixies, but it's superior to Ben Sisario's 33 1/3 on Doolittle, because of its depth (that's not to criticise Sisario - he didn't have the space). Sure, there may be some minor errors in dates etc, but the essence of the book is anecdotes and quotes from people who were involved with the band. In terms of explaining why the band was special, and why it has a unique place in rock music, Fool the World is completely successful. More than that, it's a fun read. Highly recommended.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By M. Galkin on April 15, 2006
Format: Paperback
Josh Frank and Caryn Ganz's illuminating Fool the World: The Oral Biography of a Band Called Pixies might be the definitive written document on the group, perhaps the most cryptic and under-documented major band in the history of rock music. The need for this kind of book was considerable. Certainly the spate of Pixies' reunion tour tie-in products has done some of the work in quenching the thirst of the die-hards. But what Fool the World offers us that the others don't is the whole deal, not just the story of the re-birth of this beloved band. The book recounts, in painstaking detail and with profound craftsmanship, the brief yet creatively explosive history of the Pixies - from the childhood beginnings (including some great history/insight into Kim and Kelley Deal), through to the present day (the band's seemingly unending reunion tour). Its certainly the most intimate recounting of the band's infamous break up that I've read. Along the way, nearly everyone who had a hand in the Pixies' meteoric rise and demise weighs in - the original staff of Fort Apache Studios, Ivo Watts-Russell, Steve Albini, Kristin Hirsch, Tanya Donelly, ex-wives, ex-husbands, and of course the band members themselves. The result is the closest approximation of the `truth' we're ever likely to get about this band. Thankfully, it's also a damn good read.

The thing I love about oral biographies, and this one in particular, is the Rashomon-like potential for differing subjective realities. If done well (this one is) about a worthy and sufficiently dramatic subject (check on that), a skilled author(s) can approach something more truthful than the truth - its not that the facts were recounted; its how they were recounted.
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