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Devils & Blue Dresses: My Wild Ride as a Rock and Roll Legend Hardcover – December 6, 2011
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About the Author
Mitch Ryder is a legendary musician, songwriter, and performer. Mitch Ryder and The Detroit Wheels reached Billboard chart fame in 1965 with " Jenny Take a Ride" and in 1966 with "Little Latin Lupe Lu" and with the Top Five smash "Devil with a Blue Dress On/Good Golly Miss Molly." In 1967 "Sock It To Me Baby" reached the Top Four before Ryder split from the band to pursue a solo career. Touring steadily, Ryder has released 27 CDs and counting, retaining a fan following largely in Europe particularly Germany. Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels were inducted into the Michigan Rock and Roll Legends Hall of Fame in 2005. "Devil with a Blue Dress On/Good Golly, Miss Molly" was voted a Legendary Michigan Song in 2008. In 2009, Ryder was inducted into the Hall of Fame a second time in recognition of his long career as a solo artist. He currently lives with his wife, Megan, in Michigan.
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The book does not share a ghost writer. It is Mitch telling his own story. Mitch is not a gifted writer. To me the book is difficult to read because it seems disjointed. He will talk about his touring then drop in something about his children. Nonetheless, I got through it. Mitch has had a hell of a life. To be honest, I'm surprised he is still alive. He is a survivor! Mitch talks about his "devils" drugs, sex and alcohol honestly. He talks about his relationships with four wives openly. Mitch makes no excuses. He explains clearly what the demons have done to him personally and with his wives and children. He also explains how the music industry screwed him as a young man and how he quickly learned to distrust the corporate power structure. Mitch's experience is no different than countless other rock stars who were taken advantage of by managers, record companies, lawyers and promoters. Rock stars had little experience with business contracts and lawyers. They were in the limelight, being adored by fans and enjoying success while record companies, etc. were reaping millions of dollars. When they were no longer useful they were discarded like yesterday's garbage.
The reader who does not know much about Mitch's career will be surprised to learn all of this. Also, what amazed me was Mitch had a prolific career in Europe. He has recorded over 25 albums with several different bands. All I remember is his original band, the Detroit Wheels. I will search out some of his later music. He states that some of the things that were recorded later in his career were his best work.
If you are a fan of Mitch Ryder or interested in the music of the 1960's you will enjoy the book Devils and Blue Dresses.