This is a very hard review to write. It’s hard because I loved Wyndham Wallace's book so much. It’s hard because, while it’s ostensibly about a music "legend," it’s really about so much more than that.
The back flap tells you it’s a book about an English indie music biz wanna-be, who interviews, hangs out with, befriends and then ultimately manages an American music legend — at least to the ultra-hip British music cognoscenti. They seem to fall in love with obscure American artists this country doesn’t even know about.
What it doesn’t tell you is that the book is about friendship. It’s about love. It’s about loss. It’s about dreams dashed and dreams brought to life. It’s about what you feel and what you think when you come face-to-face with your heroes. It’s about the music biz and all of the fun and bullshit that comes with that sometimes-hideous business. It’s about transcending that hideousness, and doing what you love because, well, you just love it. It’s about believing in someone when, perhaps, they don’t believe in themselves.
Yes, this is, on its face, a “music biography” — of sorts. However, I’d recommend that anyone interested in all of the things above, combined with some truly eccentric characters and beautiful prose, read Me, Myself and I: Inside The Very Special World of Lee Hazlewood. It’s so easy to get lost in it because it almost reads like a work of fiction. It’s not, of course. It’s about Lee Hazlewood, who will forever be known as the writer and producer of Nancy Sinatra’s “These Boot Were Made For Walking,” a song that is as bad-ass now as it was when it was released in the Sixties. He would go on to make several critically-acclaimed, impossible to find records that few people ever heard of.
And, it’s also the story of everyman sort-of-loser/sort-of-hipster Wyndham Wallace, who gets transfixed, seduced, mesmerized, consumed and intoxicated by the music, the image and the legend of Hazlewood at a bong-induced backstage party for an indie band likely long forgotten. How they meet, what they do, and what their relationship becomes…well…you’ll have to read it for yourself. I can’t spoil that story. You really have to read — and experience it — for yourself.
Part of that back cover copy calls the book “the touching and true story of what it’s like to meet your hero, befriend him, and then watch him die.” All true, but, god….it’s so much more than that…
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