Yes, punk rockers do actually read. And more to the point, they write, too.
The MarketPlace Gallery in Albany will be the host of the Nippertown stop of the Cleveland Confidential Book Tour, featuring readings, discussion and a Q&A session with three Cleveland rockers turned writers – Cheetah Chrome of the Dead Boys, Mike Hudson of the Pagans and Bob Pfeifer of Human Switchboard.
CHEETAH CHROME: “A Dead Boy’s Tale From the Front Lines of Punk Rock”
The no-holds-barred autobiography of the lead guitarist of the Dead Boys, one of America’s great punk bands. It’s the true tale of success and excess, music played with abandon and life lived the same way – legendary antics, epic drug use and eventual resurrection. As a songwriter, Chrome’s work has been covered by artists such as Guns N’ Roses, Pearl Jam and the Beastie Boys. He continues to perform and record with Rocket From The Tombs (with David Thomas of Pere Ubu and Richard Lloyd of Television) and Batusis (with Sylvain Sylvain of the New York Dolls).
MIKE HUDSON: “Jetsam” and “Diary of a Punk”
“Diary of a Punk” is the autobiography of the founder of the seminal American punk band, the Pagans, who formed in 1977. The 32 short pieces that make up “Jetsam” were written and originally published between 1977-2009. His writing has also appeared in such diverse publications as Hustler, the Associated Press, Master Detective and Field & Stream. Hudson is currently the editor and CEO of The Niagara Falls Reporter, a tabloid specializing in politics and organized crime.
BOB PFEIFER: “University of Strangers”
Pfeifer’s first novel is built around the case of American student Amanda Knox, who was convicted of the murder of her British roommate Meredith Kercher, in what Italian authorities have described as a sadistic sexual encounter. It’s a unique blend of fact and fiction that addresses the violence, corruption and celebrity worship that characterize so much of 21st century life. Pfeifer was a founding member of Human Swichboard, who later became senior vice president at Epic/Sony Records and president of Hollywood Records. He plays in Tabby Chinos (with Cynthia Sley of Bush Tetras and Don Fleming of Gumball).
Following the readings, there will be a Q&A session with the audience, a discussion of the authors’ books and careers (moderated by Keri Kresler) and a book-signing session. The event takes place at the MarketPlace Gallery in Albany at 7pm. Admission is free.
And just to get you primed for the evening, here’s a brief excerpt from Mike Hudson’s “Diary of a Punk”:
We were waiting at the club before they opened the doors. This was the real deal. Being the opening act at a concert was entirely different than playing for four hours to a bunch of drunks trying to pick up women. Now we only had to play for twenty-five minutes to a bunch of drunks trying to pick up women.
When the other bands began to arrive, we noticed another difference. They didn’t look like the band guys we knew from Euclid or Collinwood. David Thomas (aka Crocus Behemoth) and Tony Maimone from Pere Ubu, Jamie Klimek, Paul Marotta and Anton Fier from the Styrenes, Ward Welch and Donny Damage from the Rubber City Rebels – not a single one of them had long feathered hair or platform shoes.
I was at the bar and Crocus approached me. Here was the cameraderie we had sought. Here was an underground scene we could be part of, I thought. I extended my hand in friendly greeting.
“Get your shit off my stage before I throw it off,” he said.
Maybe this was gonna be tougher than I thought.