Contrary to popular belief, I’m not dead, and neither is this feature. I just fell into one of those my-brain-is-pure-mush-right-now funks, and I had a real hard time breaking free from that groove. But what better way to make a return than with a book by Singer/Songwriter Todd Snider, a man who I unsuccessfully try to not mention so often on the Acid Pop Cult Podcast.
So without further delay… #ReadAnFnBookFridays
Snider’s book I Never Met a Story I Didn’t Like: Mostly True Tall Tales, is his attempt to put into writing the stories he’s known for telling in between songs at his live shows. Many of the stories inspired songs, and that is dutifully noted in the book, complete with the inclusion of the lyrics of said song.
Sounds boring, right?
If it does, then you’ve probably never heard of Todd Snider and have no idea as to the kind of stories the man might tell.
Todd Snider has been traveling the country for more than 20 years, making songs up, and singing them for whoever will listen to them. Some of them are long, some of them are short, some of them are funny, some of them are sad, and he’s been known to talk for as many as 18 minutes in between those songs.
That is my horrific attempt at paraphrasing a disclaimer he frequently delivers at the top of every show. Generally, his songs are about societal misfits. People who live on the fringe. As his book reveals, he’s quite at home in the company of these weirdos.
In the book, he tells stories of meeting his idols, like Jerry Jeff Walker, Kris Kristofferson, John Prine and more. He also discloses a few things he learned from each of those people.
More interestingly though, he tells the story of the time he spent the morning with Slash of Guns n Roses in a hotel bar, the time Tony Bennett picked his pocket at an East Nashville car wash, and the time Bill Elliott came to one of his shows and proved to be a pure dick.
There’s also the tale of the time Jimmy Buffett angrily hurled fruit at him backstage at a concert. Buffett was a key player in getting Snider’s career started. His first few albums were released on Buffett’s record label.
One theme that appears in many of the stories is Snider’s favorite pastime of consuming illegal substances. There are good times and bad times associated with the drug stories in the book. He did meet his wife during a rehab stint, and he also happened to be in the same rehab facility Phil Hartman’s wife was in just days before she would shoot her husband. He has also nearly died a few times pursuing his pastime, and he covers all of it in the book.
Above all else, the book is a quick, entertaining read that doesn’t require an intimate knowledge of Snider’s music and career. He’s able to tell colorful stories in print in much the same way he’s known for doing it in his songs.
It’s worth checking out, so pick it up at Amazon, or some other place that still sells books, and give it a read then let me know what you think of it.
We should be back on schedule next week with another new one, but until then, why don’t you read a fucking book on your own or something.
Full disclosure, I’ve been a hardcore Snider fan since the mid-1990s, so my views might be a bit biased. Take it for what it’s worth.
Here’s a crappy video of him doing the intro I half-attempted earlier in this piece. Crappy video, but what do you expect when you troll around on YouTube for stuff?