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Girl in a Band: A Memoir Paperback – December 1, 2015
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"Theft by Finding: Diaries (1977-2002)" by David Sedaris
In one of the most anticipated books of 2017, David Sedaris tells a story that is, literally, a lifetime in the making. Pre-order today
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“Kim Gordon writes the way she plays. Fiercely, honestly, and with the creative abandon of a singular artist.” (AMY POEHLER, actor, producer, writer)
“I’ve always admired Kim Gordon. She is cool, smart, and dignified. Girl in a Band is a fascinating and honest memoir full of raw emotion and insight.” (SOFIA COPPOLA, filmmaker)
“The best thing one of your heroes can do is make you feel heroic yourself. Kim Gordon has done just that in her memoir; it is full of beauty and power, inspiration, kindness, boldness and hope.” (CARRIE BROWNSTEIN, writer, actor, musician CARRIE BROWNSTEIN, writer, actor, musician)
“Written with the same cool passion she brings to her lyrics, Gordon delivers a generous look at life inside the punk whirlwind.” (Kirkus Reviews)
Everybody loves Kim Gordon. So it’s pretty much my bet that everybody will be hanging on the words of anyone who’s read her forthcoming memoir (which is reportedly phenomenal). [Ed. note: It’s even better than you’re probably expecting.] (Flavorwire)
“From beginning to end, the icon chronicles the evolution of music, art, and herself, set in and out of an ever-changing New York.” (Interview)
Gordon’s career as a musician, artist, critic, performer, producer, and designer spanned the last truly hip era of downtown New York. The names and the nostalgia-for those who remember or who wish they did-are well worth the price of admission. (Booklist)
An intriguing memoir. . . [Gordon’s] unique sensibility never fades. (Publishers Weekly)
“heartbreaking, raw, articulate, and inspiring.” (Bust Magazine)
From the Back Cover
“Unconventional. . . . Not a garden-variety rock memoir . . . [but] a strange and lovely book about a woman finding and losing herself onstage and off and crafting a complicated creative life when none of the molds quite fit.”—Los Angeles Times Book Review
“Engaging and surprisingly intimate.”—Vanity Fair
“More than a memoir, though one of the most riveting music biographies ever penned.”—Examiner.com
For many, Kim Gordon, vocalist, bassist, and founding member of Sonic Youth—one of the most influential and successful bands to emerge from the post-punk New York scene—has always represented the epitome of cool. And almost as celebrated as the band’s defiantly dissonant sound was the marriage between Gordon and her then husband, Thurston Moore. When it was announced that the couple was splitting after twenty-seven years of marriage, fans were devastated.
In Girl in a Band, this famously reserved superstar speaks candidly about her past and the future. From her childhood in the sunbaked suburbs of Southern California, growing up with a mentally ill sibling, to New York’s downtown art and music scene in the eighties and nineties and the birth of a band that would pave the way for acts like Nirvana, as well as help inspire the Riot Grrl generation, here is an edgy and evocative portrait of a life in art.
Exploring the artists, musicians, and writers who influenced her, and the relationship that defined her life for so long, Girl in a Band is filled with the sights and sounds of a pre-Internet world and is a deeply personal portrait of a woman who has become an icon.
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Top Customer Reviews
In reality, "Girl in a Band" manages to offer all of that, just never fully. We get an interesting background about her upbringing, her childhood, moving around the world at a young age. From there, Kim Gordon focuses on growing up in the '60s, her budding love of the art, and her travels around the country, offering up interesting, albeit brief tidbits and interesting namedropping along the way.
Upon explaining her arrival in New York, Gordon tackles the Sonic Youth sections by focusing on each album. At first, I was excited when she presented the history so concisely. However, Kim Gordon speeds through each album so quickly, it's sometimes disappointing. She tends to focus on certain sections of lyrics rather than the dynamics of the band at the time, or their travels, recording, etc.(for a easily enjoyable book on the history of Sonic Youth, check out "Goodbye 20th Century" by David Browne). While many sections offera fresh perspective, I can't help but wish she would have expanded on certain areas.
The book is a quick read, at times very well constructed, and page turning. However, certain section are written as if it managed to dodge an editor, suddenly taking on a sloppy casual tone following a well crafted previous chapter. All in all, Kim Gordon's memoir is a welcomed addition from a strong female voice and true artist. At the end of the day, I wished this book could have been longer. It left me wanting more in a "there's more to say" sense rather than "I can't put it down." In the end, if all of the story hasn't been set straight, at least we have a glimpse into the mind of a living legend.
But as others have noted, some chapters were badly in need of a good editor: clumsy construction, etc. But what really made me put the book down was the constant name-dropping. We get it already: You knew them when! They're really famous now! You're besties! And the repetition of describing said names; again, a good editor would have noted that we already know they're big! famous! leaders in their field! from a previous chapter - no need to tell us all over again.
All in all, it was ok.
Kim seemed to focus more on her art background and other things going on in her life, than the music.
I enjoyed this book and have been re-reading portions that struck me as interesting. The book was a fairly quick read.