An unusual and evocative first-hand account of the relationship between two iconic figures of sixties and seventies New York. For fans of Chronicles by Bob Dylan, Minor Characters by Joyce Johnson, A Freewheelin' Time by Suze Rotolo and On the Road by Jack Kerouac This book will appeal to lovers of art, photography poetry and music, as well as a gay audience.
Patti Smith is a writer, artist and performer. She has recorded ten albums and written five books, and her artwork has been exhibited worldwide. In 2005 she received the Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, the highest grade awarded by the French Republic to eminent artists and writers who have contributed significantly to furthering the arts throughout the world. She lives in New York City.
In her music, Patti Smith transformed rock 'n' roll into a kind of electric poetry, spoken word energized by the jolt and rumble of guitars and drums. It should be no surprise, then, that in narrating her memoir of her intimate friendship with the photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, she turns in a performance that approaches art. Words bob and weave as if set to music, and Smith transforms her prose into a series of entrancing sounds-as interesting for their rhythms as their meaning. Using shifts in cadence and pregnant pauses, she allows silence to convey as much as words. Even phrases that clanged on the page sound perfect when Smith reads them herself. She writes of her youth and young womanhood, and something of those long-gone days emerges in the tone of her voice. The listener can hear traces of Smith's New Jersey roots in her occasionally dropped r's and long, flat vowels. An Ecco paperback. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Singer/songwriter/poet Smith, also known as the "grandmother of punk rock," recalls her early days in New York City when she was searching for a vocation and a direction in her life. Most of all, this is a recollection of her deep, intimate friendship with late photographer Robert Mapplethorpe (1946-89), a fellow hungry and aspiring creator whom she calls "the artist of my life." It also is a vivid depiction of life in late 1960s New York and the famous people she knew (for example, Andy Warhol and Allen Ginsberg). Smith's narrative is poetic and beautifully composed, and she herself reads in a stoic and reflective voice that is mesmerizing. Highly recommended. [The Ecco: HarperCollins hc, LJ Xpress Reviews, 11/20/09, was an LJ and a New York Times best seller.-Ed.]-Phillip Oliver, Univ.of North Alabama Lib., Florence (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.