Friday, April 23, 2010
To be a fan of music and not be a musician is to be a person of questionable stability. This is what I have understood about myself for 40 + years as I went about my business leaning into my speakers in slack-jawed amazement as "a listener". A listener. Every time I write it or post this I think to myself, "That kind of sounds suggestive and hopelessly lame as in: I like to watch". Thanks to Steve Almond and his accurate definition of drooling fanatic I realize that I am so much more than a listener. I crawl from the muck of the river Denial to face the music and realize that I'm closeted. In reality and in the eyes of oh so many who are too kind to mention it, I'm a nut job.
I do not usually buy books as I work in a library as a minimum wage slave but it was the perfect storm. I ordered the book, "Rock and Roll Will Save Your Life" by Steve Almond when it was suggested by Dayna Kurtz on Facebook. It all happened so fast...
I can't say enough about how much I enjoyed reading "Rock and Roll will Save Your Life". Even if you are not into openly admitting you are a popular culture whore, you will relate to the engaging way Almond tells his stories. He has a strong command of the language and it provides him with a larger palette than many who I have read who approached sharing these types of experiences. It is just the broad stroke of his storytelling that give this personal discourse their snap and will knock you into laughing in spite of yourself.
Through the mishaps and the discoveries you get to follow along as Steve tears his life up and puts it all together again as he wants it. There is just too much packed into this tiny book to even begin to describe it's delights to a music lover. I have to say what I personally liked a LOT - even more than the the hysterically funny bits - was the way Almond tied up his story. I can't really call it an ending because it isn't and he subtly seems to incorporate this. It was a dignified and pleasant surprise twist and I will not spoil it for you but I will tell you this: I feel better about myself and my penchant for being spasmodically devoted to people who are creative and dedicated to sharing their talents....and I do so because of the charming way this book dandled my perceived weakness and returned it to me as a strength.
Rock on you crazy Almond...and thanks for the melodies.