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Searching for the Sound: My Life with the Grateful Dead Paperback – April 25, 2006
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Phil Lesh, considered the most academic of the group due to his avant-garde classical composition training, literate mind, and passion for the arts, decided to write his story himself. Written without the crutch of a ghostwriter, Searching for the Sound might be considered disjointed in places, but overall it comes across as conversational, intimate, informative, and candid (particularly regarding topics of drug use and death). If you are familiar with the band and their extended family, their history, the sixties' musical milestones and influences and all the band's famous tales (the Garcia/ Lesh "silent" confrontation, being busted on Bourbon Street, the Wall of Sound), you may be a little disgruntled there is not much new here in the way of content. However, what is "new" and totally satisfying is Phil's warm, optimistic perspective on the many events that helped shape his life. As described by Lesh, his life's journey, much like the Dead's music, is "a [series] of recurring themes, transpositions, repetitions, unexpected developments, all converging to define form that is not necessarily apparent until it's ending has come and gone." For the many fans who enjoyed the fruits of his life pursuit of sonic explorations, Searching for the Sound is a welcome addition to their Dead library. --Rob Bracco --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Top Customer Reviews
It's rare you get to read a book by a dedicated musician, and not a *ROCKSTAR*. Listening to the Grateful Dead taught me a lot about listening to music in general. After appreciating the dynamic between Garcia, Lesh and Weir, I was able to move on to Coltrane, Garrison, Jones and Tyner and many more great combinations after that. I've always admired Lesh as a musician, but now I also admire him as a writer, a husband and a father. Go in peace, Mr. Lesh! Thanks for the great read!
Our intimate circle of Deadhead cohorts--best friends, pals, passing and long-term acquaintances that began in Southern Illinois (particularly along with the fabulous and memorable cover group, "Uncle Jon's Band,") through our crew called "East Bay Deadheads For Peace" formed during one of many Berkeley Greek Theater shows, always called Phil "The Professor." I confess I never knew why until I read this book. Wow. Phil brings an intellectual integrity to the story of his own musical education and, of course, to the band--to the history of the music driving The Grateful Dead, and to all of us who continually flocked to see them play for us and for each other. Phil lets us in. Tells us what it was REALLY like. Even when I knew what was coming, I experienced the pains (and the joys) through a different and certainly wiser set of eyes. This book is written with true love and deep respect for all members of the band and above all, for THE MUSIC.
What amazes me most about his book is the clarity of Phil's memory. He recounts (particularly the early days) with such detail that I can't help but believe this is transcribed from personal journals.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Solid telling or the story. Poetic at times but mostly stark and direct, a humble rendition of a legends story.Published 13 days ago by Cow Man
I thoroughly enjoyed "Searching for Sound." The reason I chose this book over the plethora of other books about the Grateful Dead is because Phil himself wrote it, not a... Read morePublished 2 months ago by rra104
Phil did a fine job on his biography. He wrote the book in a manner which left out a lot of the seedier parts and glorified the best parts of the Grateful Dead. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Phil Plays Golden Tones
Phil is a phenomenal author - this could be his true calling. He has a gift with words.
His words had the gift of painting pictures in my mind, as well as unlocking... Read more
I've read several biographies/autobiographies about 1960s/70s era musicians in recent years, and I must say that I enjoyed this one most of all. Read morePublished 5 months ago by FL95
Full disclosure: I'm 66 and have always liked the Dead, but I'm not a Dead Head and I've never seen them live. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Trap49
Phil Lesh, one of the founding members of the Grateful Dead, sets out a fine line to walk in this memoir – how much of his life is best told in the history of the band, and how... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Andrew Kuligowski