Though I have always been quite a voracious reader, I once had a bit of a disdain for both biographies and autobiographies. It is ironic really, for although I love laborious histories, I’ve always had trouble wading through the specific details of the lives of those who made it.
Needless to say, you will never catch me doing so for a top celebrity either, with one possible exception. I am thoroughly enjoying the current trend of metal icons either writing or dictating their lives in autobiographies.
Perhaps it is the fact that they are usually elaborating on things I have already experienced somewhat through their music. Perhaps it is the colorful yet highly intelligent language they generally use. I think it may be a bit of both. At any rate, here are four that I thoroughly enjoyed reading.
1. Iron Man: My Journey Through Heaven and Hell with Black Sabbath, by Tony Iommi (as told to T.J. Lammers)
Iommi starts at the very beginning, his childhood, and details events I was already familiar with through his music, but unaware of as to details and given scenarios that caused certain outcomes. It was especially great reading about his beginnings, his various projects with Glenn Hughes and Ronnie James Dio (two of my all time favorite vocalists), and his mismatch with Lita Ford, then perfect match with Drain STH’s Maria Sjöholm.
2. Seven Deadly Sins: Settling the Argument Between Born Bad and Damaged Good, by Corey Taylor
I think my favorite quote in this whole book was, “When Paris Hilton can top the best sellers’ list, we are one more Connect Four move from Armageddon. I wish I were being funny, but I am clearly not.” That being said, Corey has so many good quotes in this book, it is ridiculous!
If you are looking for a book about Slipknot, or Stone Sour even, this is not it. If you are looking for anecdotes and ironically philosophical musings from the life and rambling mind of Corey Taylor, this is it. Personally, I loved it!
4. Ministry: The Lost Gospels According to Al Jourgensen, by Al Jourgensen (with Jon Winderhonn)
This book was perhaps even more graphic than the ramblings of Corey Taylor, but I do love Uncle Al’s sense of humor! It is dark, poignant, and all encompassing. To take a life filled with decades of drug addiction and music, and turn it into a cohesive story that is so very blunt in its telling, I can only say, “Well done, Al”.
This book will make your jaw drop, and make you giggle at the same time. Somewhere along the way, you will grow to appreciate Jourgensen for what he truly is, a definite character, and a very self aware man!
5. Bruce Dickinson: Flashing Metal with Maiden and Flying Solo, by Joe Shooman
My favorite memory of Iron Maiden will always be of them on some British music show where they were asked to lip sync. Needless to say, this did not set well with them, and while they did perform, it was, well, far more entertaining than a venture in lip syncing should be!
That is the type of thing you will find detailed in this book. Though a biography, it is the closest we have to any inside info to date on anyone from Iron Maiden. This book details so many things about Dickinson that I did not even know! It gave me a little insight into goings one during his solo efforts at least, which is something I , for one, have always been curious about.
These four books are certainly worth a read, and perhaps even a re-read at some point. Yes, I have a tendency to re-read, just personally. It is why I am a book collector in the first place. It is great to have a little music to go with my reading too!