Read SCUSE ME WHILE I KISS THE SKY (REVISED E by David Henderson Free Online
Book Title: SCUSE ME WHILE I KISS THE SKY (REVISED E|
The author of the book: David Henderson
Date of issue: March 1st 1996
ISBN 13: 9780553377859
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 1.99 MB
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Reader ratings: 6.4
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This was the first Hendrix bio I ever read, long, long ago. I remember finding it difficult to get through and this time around was no different. Greil Marcus called 'Scuse Me While I Kiss The Sky, 'The strongest and most ambitious biography yet written about any rock and roll performer,' which I can't agree with but, if you ask me, says a lot about a lot of things.
Henderson can definitely write but I think he could have used some heavy editing. He repeats himself, he jumps around like a little kid on a hot beach, he goes on for pages at a time about a single song and he writes sentences like; 'As Buddy Miles screams in the background a Delta moan, Hendrix lightly fingers the amp-busting guitar, his very touch emitting the cries of a woman beyond pleasure to the threshold of pain, the screams of electric fire, the loony cacophony of siren scream alarm pain plains in space bombing people screaming.' Okay.
And there's just an awful lot of speculation going on here. Henderson discusses in the afterward how he assembled information from many, many sources in a narrative, meaning he's making it up as he goes along and feeling fine about it because these scenes are based on fact. A guy like Erik Larson can do this and it works, it seems accurate. You get done reading 'Scuse Me... and wonder how much of it was fact and how much of it was well intentioned but ultimately uninformative fiction.
On that same note, I watched a Hendrix documentary while reading this. The documentary features interviews with family and friends and is ultimately more informative than this book is. I feel like, for all Henderson's countless interviews, he might have chosen his subjects better. It seems as if the only person he talked to was Al Hendrix, Jimi's father. Al paints a rather different picture than Leon Hendrix, Jimi's brother. During his interviews for 'Scuse Me..., Al sure as hell didn't mention Joseph, Jimi and Leon's brother who Al forced their mother to give up for adoption. 'Scuse Me While I Kiss The Sky doesn't give the whole story.
The second half of the book is all over the place and that's where it gets tough to get through. There are pages of redundant or irrelevant scenes popping in and out seemingly without reason. Perhaps this was Henderson's intent, to give us a sense of how Jimi felt in his final days. I just found it rough going.
On the upside, reading this has generated a future sale for some lucky local bookstore because I'm going to have to read someone else's take on Hendrix's life as soon as possible.
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