- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Da Capo Press; Reprint edition (March 26, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0306821796
- ISBN-13: 978-0306821790
- Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 205 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #63,105 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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When I Left Home: My Story Paperback – March 26, 2013
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Buddy makes his life come alive
Told in his own style and language, the book reads more like a blues song than an actual book, each verse telling a different story. And what stories they are
Buddy's book is as colourful as the blues
If you're looking for a reasonably unvarnished account of the blues life, Buddy has it here
The book is funny, sad, tragic, lusty, honest, loving and insightful. Just like the blues. Just like Buddy Guy. If you love the blues and all that it means, you should love this book.
Houston Press, 5/8/12
In this memoir, the story of [Guy?s] life is also the tale of the music itself of the past 50-plus years There?s a treasure trove of stories here.
BluesPowR blog, 5/10/12
When I Left Home covers an amazing amount of ground in its close to 300 pages Relayed in a simple, conversational manner, the book does a terrific job of documenting the life of one of blues music's biggest living stars, making it a must-read for any fan of the blues When I Left Home isn't, as the title indicates, just Buddy's story; in many respects, this is a story of the blues.?
Quincy Patriot Ledger, 1/3/14
Tasty as a Buddy Guy guitar lick.
Library Journal, 3/1/12
Guy is a vibrant and hilarious storyteller. With a natural ease and honesty, he captures the spirit of the age, the culture of violence in the clubs, and the personalities of his colleagues...Highly recommended for any fan of Guy and those interested in the history of blues music.
Publishers Weekly, 4/16/12
As mesmerizing a storyteller as a guitarist, Guy, writing with Ritz, regales readers with tales of growing up picking cotton in rural Alabama, of seeing his first guitar and standing transfixed in front of Lightning Slim for several hours just memorizing the movements of Slim?s hands, of his father?s friend buying his first guitar for him, and of his endless efforts to play the blues as he had heard and seen Slim and others play Guy?s memoir is a joyous celebration of the blues, one of our greatest musical treasures.
Chicago Magazine, May 2012
[A] must-read autobiography What makes the breezy and revealing book special is its ability to bring historyGuy?s own, as well as that of Chicago bluesto life.
Internet Review of Books, 4/6/12
In When I Left Home: My Story we finally get inside Buddy Guy, guitar muse to Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughn, and the Rolling Stones (to name but a few) Buddy's narrative is cousin to his music. It's down home. It's not clean and prissy This biography gives the reader unabridged stories of many of the great blues artists of his day and before, and raw images of the Chicago blues scene as it was from the 1950s to the 1980s A valuable and rare insight into the music and the musician.
Record Collector, May 2012
Gives the whole picture, from sharecropping family to big city hustling; guitar-playing to womanizing and back again [Guy] gives a real flavour of the age and circumstances he grew up on.
Boston Globe, 5/11/12
A lively, sharply etched account of Guy?s unlikely ascent from sharecropper roots in Louisiana to the blues hotbed of Chicago and beyond.
Memphis Commercial Appeal, 5/4/12
The music fans [Guy] has affected so profoundly over his 50-plus year career will at last know how he feels.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 5/11/12
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Top customer reviews
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The colloquial speech used in the narration was so natural, it felt like he was sitting here talking.
I learned a lot of things I didn't know, like how the Black community sort of moved on at what point as to what they wanted to hear (Motown and so on), which fortuitously happened at the same time as the British Invasion groups coming to find their Blues idols, eventually bringing them on tour and introducing them to massive White audiences.
Living in Chicago, it was fun to hear where all the clubs were and the way it was back then. I could just picture it all.
This is a great memoir and one cool book. Highly recommended.
He told it like it was when telling about his interactions with musicians and producers over the years.
I found that part of the book the most interesting, especially his experiences with Howling Wolf, Muddy Waters, and multiple other contemporaries. It was interesting to read about Paul Butterfield and Mike Bloomfield's early interest in the blues.
This is definitely a must read for any blues fan, even moreso for Buddy Guy fans.
I saw Buddy perform six years ago (the day before his 70th birthday in Paso Robles, CA). It was a free show at the mid state fair. My wife and I showed up early anticipating that there would be several blues fans who knew what we knew about Buddy's performances and that the place would be packed... it was. Buddy's show was incredible. I had lowered expectation because after all, he was turning 70... we all slow down at some point... but not Buddy. He had more energy than performers one third his age. He played like this was his last show. He loves to entertain the audience and he whipped us all into a frenzy. At one point he came into the audience and ended up jamming right in front of my wife and me. It takes a special performer to be on all the time like this. This was one of my favorite all time shows... and it was free! If I ever get back to Chicago, you can count on me going to Buddy's bar. Hopefully it'll be a slow day for business and Buddy will be compelled to play in an effort to drum up business. Do I have the blues? Damn Right I have the Blues!