“Ranks up there with the great rock & roll books of all time.” —Time Out New York “Lurid, insolent, disorderly, funny, sometimes gross, sometimes mean and occasionally touching . . . Resounds with authenticity.”—New York Times
“Dishes the crud on everyone . . . candid, inside, and detailed.”—New Yorker
“The riotously funny story of New York punk told by those who were there.”—Daily News “An honest, detailed oral history, uncensored—hell, filthy—and fascinating.”—Rolling Stone “Does for the Ramones what the disciples did for Jesus.”—L.A. Weekly
“In much the same way that punk was a musical revolution, the definitive book about punk was a literary one. With its modernization of the oral history tradition Please Kill Me revolutionized . . . the way we think about storytelling when it was published in 1996.”—Good Times
“An often shocking oral history of those gloriously volatile years when a pocket of this country’s largest city raised its middle finger to the rest of the world.”—Chicago Sun-Times
This year we celebrate the 20th anniversary of PLEASE KILL ME: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk
(Grove Press; August 9 2016; 512 pgs; $17; 978-0-8021-2536-1),
with an updated edition complete with new photos and an afterword by the authors detailing the oral history narrative genre.
A Time Out and New York Daily News Best Book of the Year when it came out in 1996, PLEASE KILL ME is a genuine cult book, published in 12 languages and in print for 20 years.
It has become a contemporary American classic and spawned a generation of music oral history books, often imitated but never equaled. Here are scores of famous and infamous punks who lent their voices to chronicle a musical revolution and social history, including lggy Pop, Richard Hell, Patti Smith, Dee Dee and Joey Ramone, Malcolm McLaren, Jim Carroll, Debbie Harry and many more. From its origins in Andy Warhol’s New York to its last gasps as eighties corporate rock, the phenomenon that was known as punk is analyzed, criticized, eulogized, and idealized by the people who were there, and who made it happen.