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Twenty Thousand Roads: The Ballad of Gram Parsons and His Cosmic American Music

by

Twenty Thousand Roads: The Ballad of Gram Parsons and His Cosmic American Music Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

As a singer and songwriter, Gram Parsons stood at the nexus of countless musical crossroads, and he sold his soul to the devil at every one. His intimates and collaborators included Keith Richards, William Burroughs, Marianne Faithfull, Peter Fonda, Roger McGuinn, and Clarence White. Parsons led the Byrds to create the seminal country rock masterpiece Sweetheart of the Rodeo, helped to guide the Rolling Stones beyond the blues in their appreciation of American roots music, and found his musical soul mate in Emmylou Harris. Parsons solo albums, GP and Grievous Angel, are now recognized as visionary masterpieces of the transcendental jambalaya of rock, soul, country, gospel, and blues Parsons named “Cosmic American Music.” Parsons had everything-looks, charisma, money, style, the best drugs, the most heartbreaking voice-and threw it all away with both hands, dying of a drug and alcohol overdose at age twenty-six.

In this beautifully written, raucous, meticulously researched biography, David N. Meyer gives Parsons mythic life its due. From interviews with hundreds of the famous and obscure who knew and worked closely with Parsons-many who have never spoken publicly about him before-Meyer conjures a dazzling panorama of the artist and his era.

Praise for Twenty Thousand Roads

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE LOS ANGELES TIMES

NAMED ONE OF THE FIVE BEST ROCK BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY ROLLING STONE

“Far and away the most thorough biography of Parsons . . . skewers any number of myths surrounding this endlessly mythologized performer.”

-Los Angeles Times

“A terrific biography of a rock innovator that hums with juicy detail and wincing truth. . . . Page after page groans with the folly of the 60s drug culture, the tragedy of talent toasted before its time, the curse of wealth and the madness of wasted opportunity.”

-The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“The definitive account of Gram Parsons life-and early death. From the country-rock pioneers wealthy, wildly dysfunctional family through his symbiotic friendship with Keith Richards, Meyer deftly illuminates one of rocks most elusive figures.”

-Rolling Stone

“Meticulously researched . . . Though Meyer answers a lot of long-burning questions, he preserves Parsons legend as a man of mystery.”

-Entertainment Weekly

“Meyer gives Parsons a thorough, Peter Guralnick-like treatment.”

-New York Post

Visit the official website: www.twentythousandroads.com

Synopsis:

US

Synopsis:

Gram Parsons lived fast, died young, and left a beautiful corpse-a corpse his friends stole, took to Joshua Tree National Monument, and set afire in its coffin. The theft and burning of his body marked the end of Gram Parsons' life and the beginning of the Gram Parsons legend.

As a singer and songwriter, Gram Parsons stood at the nexus of countless musical crossroads, and he sold his soul to the devil at every one. Parson hung out with glamorous women and the coolest friends. His intimates and collaborators on his journey included Keith Richards, William Burroughs, Marianne Faithfull, Peter Fonda, Roger McGuinn, Clarence White, and Emmylou Harris. Parsons had everything-looks, charisma, money, style, the best drugs, the most heartbreaking voice-and threw it all away with both hands. His ballad is one of gigantic talent colliding with epic self-destruction.

Parsons led the Byrds to create the seminal country rock masterpiece Sweetheart of the Rodeo. He formed the Flying Burrito Brothers, helped to guide the Rolling Stones beyond the blues in their appreciation of American roots music, and found his musical soul mate in Emmylou Harris. Parsons' solo albums, GP and Grievous Angel, are now recognized as visionary masterpieces of the transcendental jambalaya of rock, soul, country, gospel, and blues Parsons named Cosmic American Music. Four months before Grievous Angel was released, Parsons died of a drug and alcohol overdose at age twenty-six.

In this beautifully written, raucous, meticulously researched biography, David N. Meyer gives Parsons' mythic life its due. From Parsons' privileged Southern Gothic upbringing to his early career in Greenwich Village's folk music sceneto his Sunset Strip glory days, Twenty Thousand Roads paints an unprecedented portrait of the man who linked country to rock. Parsons' creative genius gave birth to a new sound that was rooted in the past but heralded the future.

From interviews with hundreds of the famous and obscure who knew and worked closely with Parsons-many who have never spoken publicly about him before-Meyer conjures a dazzling panorama of the artist and his era. Shedding new light and dispelling old myths, Twenty Thousand Roads is a breakthrough in rock-and-roll biography and more-a chronicle of creativity, drugs, excess, culture, and music in the ferment of late-1960s America.

Visit the official website: www.twentythousandroads.com

From the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

David N. Meyer was born in Gainesville, Georgia. His books include The 100 Best Films To Rent You've Never Heard Of and A Girl and A Gun; The Complete Guide to Film Noir On Video. He has written on film and music for Entertainment Weekly, The New York Times, Wired and The Rocket. Mr. Meyer teaches in cinema studies at the New School and is the film editor for the arts monthly Brooklyn Rail. He contributed to the underground humor classic The Book of the Subgenius. He lives in New York City and Ketchum, Idaho.

www.twentythousandroads.com

From the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780345503367
Author:
Meyer, David
Publisher:
Villard Books
Author:
Meyer, David N.
Subject:
Composers & Musicians - General
Subject:
Rock musicians
Subject:
United states
Subject:
Rock musicians -- United States.
Subject:
Parsons, Gram
Subject:
Composers & Musicians
Subject:
Biography-Composers and Musicians
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20080931
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
30 PHOTOS THROUGHOUT
Pages:
592
Dimensions:
7.90x5.50x1.30 in. 1.00 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Music » Genres and Styles » Country » Biographies
Arts and Entertainment » Music » Genres and Styles » Rock » Biographies
Biography » Composers and Musicians

Twenty Thousand Roads: The Ballad of Gram Parsons and His Cosmic American Music New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$18.00 In Stock
Product details 592 pages Villard Books - English 9780345503367 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , US
"Synopsis" by , Gram Parsons lived fast, died young, and left a beautiful corpse-a corpse his friends stole, took to Joshua Tree National Monument, and set afire in its coffin. The theft and burning of his body marked the end of Gram Parsons' life and the beginning of the Gram Parsons legend.

As a singer and songwriter, Gram Parsons stood at the nexus of countless musical crossroads, and he sold his soul to the devil at every one. Parson hung out with glamorous women and the coolest friends. His intimates and collaborators on his journey included Keith Richards, William Burroughs, Marianne Faithfull, Peter Fonda, Roger McGuinn, Clarence White, and Emmylou Harris. Parsons had everything-looks, charisma, money, style, the best drugs, the most heartbreaking voice-and threw it all away with both hands. His ballad is one of gigantic talent colliding with epic self-destruction.

Parsons led the Byrds to create the seminal country rock masterpiece Sweetheart of the Rodeo. He formed the Flying Burrito Brothers, helped to guide the Rolling Stones beyond the blues in their appreciation of American roots music, and found his musical soul mate in Emmylou Harris. Parsons' solo albums, GP and Grievous Angel, are now recognized as visionary masterpieces of the transcendental jambalaya of rock, soul, country, gospel, and blues Parsons named Cosmic American Music. Four months before Grievous Angel was released, Parsons died of a drug and alcohol overdose at age twenty-six.

In this beautifully written, raucous, meticulously researched biography, David N. Meyer gives Parsons' mythic life its due. From Parsons' privileged Southern Gothic upbringing to his early career in Greenwich Village's folk music sceneto his Sunset Strip glory days, Twenty Thousand Roads paints an unprecedented portrait of the man who linked country to rock. Parsons' creative genius gave birth to a new sound that was rooted in the past but heralded the future.

From interviews with hundreds of the famous and obscure who knew and worked closely with Parsons-many who have never spoken publicly about him before-Meyer conjures a dazzling panorama of the artist and his era. Shedding new light and dispelling old myths, Twenty Thousand Roads is a breakthrough in rock-and-roll biography and more-a chronicle of creativity, drugs, excess, culture, and music in the ferment of late-1960s America.

Visit the official website: www.twentythousandroads.com

From the Hardcover edition.

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