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The Road Most Traveled Hardcover – September 4, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
I grew up idolizing the guys from Hot Water Music, the Bouncing Souls, and At the Drive In. To me, they were mythical beings who added to my everyday experience. Fortunately for me I was able to live in Southern California and catch them, sometimes 3 nights in a row on tour. But looking up to them, and hearing them bear their souls on stage and in your ears everyday, gives you a disoriented view of who they really are. The words within this book changed that for me. I see that they are professional in every aspect of their lives. Honest and heartfelt in what they do, and most of all really know it is about the fans, respect, showmanship and how lucky they are to be able to live out their dreams, as hard as it may be on body, mind, and soul.
I suppose I thought I was going to uncover raucous stories of touring, and wild times of travel, but I was, at last page, relieved it was not that. Had it been, these guys would have stayed the same until my dying days. Although I still can say everyone who added is still a musical genius/industry god in my mind, the realness to hear their inner voice was very comforting.
This is an imperative piece of writing for any band thinking of heading out on the road. Read this and follow the words of the true "Kings of the Road." These boys have been at it a long time, they know what they are talking about, and have proven themselves in some of the harshest conditions this life can offer.
If you are like me, a child of this indie generation, read this book, I know you will feel the same as I do. Although I picked up the kindle version, I definitely will be securing a hard copy for my library. The addition of the "infamous" K8isGreat was really cool, HWM and Souls shows were always my favorite. What a great treat to be able to get a little insight into the real world of what is and was such a part of me.
Intended as a collection of stories and advice about life on the road, most read like hastily written emails that offer very little insight. The quality of writing varies from amateur to awful, which is disappointing considering many of these people tell stories via song for a living; some proofreading would have helped, but a lot of these pieces should have been outright rejected. Most of the essays are less than two pages, including a whole lot of whitespace. But the worst part of this book is that all the pieces offer the same nuggets of wisdom in different words: Take care of yourself and don't be a jerk. Not exactly deep thinking in these pages. Couple that with an overall lack of personal anecdotes, and you're basically reading the same essay over and over again. Like I said, it was a chore.
I can't really recommend this book for anyone - fans won't find any insight to the individual authors' experiences (I certainly didn't), and travelers won't find any profound wisdom or life lessons in these pages. This book is a bland read and a missed opportunity.
Some of the contributors are:
Tim McIlrath- Rise Against
Al Barr- Dropkick Murphy
Greg Anntonito - The Bouncing Souls
Brian Fallon - Gaslight Anthem
Jim Ward-At The Drive-In
Jonah Bayer (Journalist)
Kate Hiltz (Record Label President)
Also notes from Flogging Molly, Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Social Distortions, Samiam, driver, roadies and what-not. Aka "The Camaraderie Collective."
Not only are these stories fun to read, and grant more than a few chuckles, they are also sometimes cautionary tales, full of advice for the new musician (or even writer) about to go on their first tour.