Synopses & Reviews
These names defined the mayhem, excess and glory of American rock for half a century, but only Neal Pollack was there for every note of every show, except for the shows he missed. Only Neal Pollack saw Memphis with Elvis, the Village with Dylan, and the depressed Pacific Northwest with Kurt Cobain. Only Neal Pollack had the extra-potent cough syrup that they all so desperately craved.
From the twisted mind of Americas most-photographed satirist comes a raw protean yawp from the depths of nowhere, a hilarious trip through time that savagely parodies the history of rock-‘n-roll and its grandiloquent journalism.
The fictional Neal Pollack, born Norbert Pollackovitz before being renamed, by Elvis, at his Bar Mitzvah, first hears the blues as a child. The notes come from the guitar of Clambone Jefferson, an ancient, mythical character who Pollack spends the rest of his life chasing as the source of musics primal allure. In that pursuit, Pollack becomes a renegade rock journalist whose screeds appear in such high-profile publications as Hillbilly Hot Rag! and Broken Testicle. He seduces Patti Smith and Joan Baez. He discovers Kurt Cobain. He goes on pharmacopoeial binges that put the most reckless, bloated rock star to shame.
Through it all, the real Neal Pollack, the greatest American novelist of his generation, manages to echo the style of overeducated blowhards while tackling the history of blues, rock, punk, post-punk and post-post-punk with equal enthusiasm and disdain.
Never Mind the Pollacks is a rock novel that really rocks. Like a classic album, it opens with a kick in the guts, proceeds to a bite in the shins, and ends with an uppercut to the jaw, leaving you bloodied, awed, and grateful. Along the way, it manages to uncover Americas sellouts and false idols. So drink some cough syrup and put on Iggy and the Stooges Raw Power. Better yet, burn your copy of Raw Power and listen to something new. Because rock, like literature, must destroy itself. Thankfully, Neal Pollack is here to kill them both.
"The whole ugly, hilarious tale is relayed here by...a monstrously pretentious journalist who allows Pollack (the author) to make fun of those who take the music industry seriously." Chris Barsanti, Book Magazine
"Pollack's novel has a swinging appeal. Not everyone will want to tune in for the author's manic tongue-in-cheek self-canonization...but Spinal Tap fans and groupies everywhere will be delighted." Publishers Weekly
"[W]hen it comes to approximating the rhythms of literary self-absorption and lacing his prose with deadpan absurdity, Pollack is a virtuoso....Pollack...has delivered an album's worth of funny but somewhat lifeless satire." G. Beato, The Washington Post
"The pill-popping and name-dropping grow a bit wearisome by the end of this long, strange trip....But St. Pierre's vapidities are hilarious...and Pollack's clever antics carry the day." Library Journal
"Loud, wild, messy, and fun just like the best rock 'n' roll." Kirkus Reviews
From acclaimed humorist Neal Pollack, an epic history of rock-and-roll told through the eyes of two rival rock critics, with more than two-dozen original songs written by the author.
From the twisted mind of the satirist who brought readers The Neal Pollack Anthology of American Literature comes a scathing, satirical look at the history of rock stars and the journalists who made them gods.
About the Author
Neal Pollack is the author of the bestselling memoir Alternadad and several books of satirical fiction, including The Neal Pollack Anthology of American Literature and the rock novel Never Mind the Pollacks. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and son.