Lowside of the Road: A Life of Tom Waits

Crown, 19 . 2009 . - 640 .
With his trademark growl, carnival-madman persona, haunting music, and unforgettable lyrics, Tom Waits is one of the most revered and critically acclaimed singer-songwriters alive today. After beginning his career on the margins of the 1970s Los Angeles rock scene, Waits has spent the last thirty years carving out a place for himself among such greats as Bob Dylan and Neil Young. Like them, he is a chameleonic survivor who has achieved long-term success while retaining cult credibility and outsider mystique. But although his songs can seem deeply personal and somewhat autobiographical, fans still know very little about the man himself. Notoriously private, Waits has consistently and deliberately blurred the line between fact and fiction, public and private personas, until it has become impossible to delineate between truth and self-fabricated legend.

Lowside of the Road is the first serious biography to cut through the myths and make sense of the life and career of this beloved icon. Barney Hoskyns has gained unprecedented access to Waitss inner circle and also draws on interviews he has done with Waits over the years. Spanning his extraordinary forty-year career from Closing Time to Orphans, from his perilous jazzbo years in 1970s LA to such shape-shifting albums as Swordfishtrombones and Rain Dogs to the Grammy Award winners of recent years, this definitive biography charts Waitss life and art step by step, album by album.

Barney Hoskyns has written a rock biographymuch like the subject himselfunlike any other. It is a unique take on one of rocks great enigmas.
 

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LibraryThing Review

  - nmele - LibraryThing

The further I read in Hoskyns biography, the more I was reminded of A.J. Weberman, the guy who spent years digging through Bob Dylan's trash and analyzing it. I was surprised when, a few pages before ...

LOWSIDE OF THE ROAD: A Life of Tom Waits

  - Kirkus

The bard of musical lowlife receives a sometimes ill-tempered biography.British music journalist Hoskyns has long been an astute chronicler of Los Angeles rock; Hotel California (2006) briefly ...

1
59
Zone
174
B E H IND THE MULE
275
Rust Never Sleeps
435
Hes Not There
467
Take It with Me When I Go
494
Waits Greatest Tracks A Top 40
503
2
505
Acknowledgements
511
275
548
Index
575
300
578
326
584
377
595
408
602

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 (2009)

Barney Hoskyns is cofounder and editorial director of the online rock-journalism library Rocks Backpages (www.rocksbackpages.com), and author of several books including Across the Great Divide: The Band and America (1993), Hotel California: Singer-Songwriters and Cocaine Cowboys in the LA Canyons (2005), and the newly reissued Waiting for the Sun: A Rock and Roll History of Los Angeles. A former U.S. correspondent for Mojo, Hoskyns writes for Uncut, the Observer Music Monthly, and other U.K. publications, and has contributed to Vogue, Rolling Stone, and GQ. He lives in southwest London.