Musician Memoirs

From Bruce Springsteen to Grace Jones and how Prince became Prince, here are 5 reads recommended by Ultimate Library’s and Karma Group Literary Luminary Philip Blackwell.  Seriously, these are fantastic memories from five of the greatest musicians of our time.


1. The Beautiful Ones by Prince

This is the story of how Prince became Prince―a first-person account of a child absorbing the world around him and then creating a persona, an artistic vision, and a life, before the hits and fame that would come to define him later. The Beautiful Ones is an original and energizing literary work, full of Prince’s ideas and vision, his voice and image, his undying gift to the world.

The Beautiful Ones


2. Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen

After performing at the Super Bowl half-time show in 2009, Springsteen decided he wanted to write about this. This will be revelatory for anyone who has ever enjoyed his music, but the book is much more than a legendary rock star’s memoir. This is a book for workers and dreamers, parents and children, or anyone who is interested in the world of rock and roll.

Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen


3. Just Kids by Patti Smith

When Patti Smith and Robert Mapplethorpe met, it was a heightened time politically and culturally with the art and music worlds exploding and colliding. In the midst of this, two kids made a pact to always care for one another. Scrappy, romantic, committed to making art, they prodded and provided each other with faith and confidence.

Just Kids


4. Chronicles: Volume One by Bob Dylan

Chronicles: Volume One is a mesmerizing window on Bob Dylan’s thoughts and influences. His trademark voice is distinctively American: generous of spirit, engaged, fanciful, and rhythmic. Utilizing his unparalleled gifts of storytelling and the exquisite expressiveness that are the hallmarks of his music, Bob Dylan turns his memoir into a poignant reflection on life, and the people and places that helped shape the man and the art.

Chronicles: Volume One


5. I’ll Never Write My Memoirs by Grace Jones

Known as much for her unique look as she is for her music, Grace Jones has influenced the likes of Lady Gaga, Rihanna and Annie Lennox. In her book, Grace takes us on a journey from her religious upbringing in Jamaica to her heyday in Paris and New York in the 70s and 80s, all the way to present-day London, exploring her various, successful and dynamic experience.

I’ll Never Write My Memoirs

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