New Wave of Rockographies

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Having always been a lover and consumer of music, at a young age I learned that the library could help me indulge my appetite.  As a teen, I had found albums, soundtracks, concert videos, MTV-style promotional videos, how-to videos, sheet music and tablature, music magazines and books on music theory, scales and chords.  My tastes had gravitated towards rock, but given the vast amount of choices the library had to offer I found that I could explore artists I was less familiar with, expand my experience into other genres, and dig into the roots of the music I already loved.

By my mid-teens I had grown from a spectator fan to a participating young musician.  My interest had deepened into learning about the lives and experiences of these musicians and artists, and again the library delivered in the form of the musician biography or specifically in this case the “rockography.” Fortunately for me, a batch of recently published biographies covers some of my favorite genres of punk and new wave.

Cured: The Tale of Two Imaginary Boys

The band’s co-founder, co-songwriter and lifelong friend of lead singer Robert Smith mines the band’s peak years to produce never-before-told tales of The Cure, from their early childhood to the band’s heyday.

Substance: Inside New Order

A British rocker tells the complete, unedited and no-holds-barred story of New Order’s founding and evolution; the band’s experiences in the NYC club scene and rapid rise to fame; and its eventual rancorous dissolution.

Set the Boy Free: The Autobiography

The memoirs of the legendary guitarist and cofounder of seminal British band The Smiths recalls his childhood in working-class Manchester, his early collaborations with Stephen Morrissey, the ideological differences that triggered his departure and his influential solo career.

Lonely Boy: Tales from a Sex Pistol

The former guitarist of the Sex Pistols describes his life, from an abused and neglected little boy involved in petty crimes on the streets of London, to the meteoric rise of his influential punk band and working as an in-demand session guitarist.