Sunday, November 8, 2015

Scott Miller

Don’t All Thank Me At Once
The Lost Pop Genius Of Scott Miller
Brett Milano
125 Books

This is a masterpiece, no other way to say it. I hope to do this book justice because it is.  One of the best books I’ve read all year, to say the least.

Scott Miller never made a bad album. And that comes through Milano’s book too, and I should add that Scott’s book Music: What Happened has that same effect.  And the stories behind each album are fascinating, since their told by those who also loved Scott, both as a musician and as a person.

And with Scott as a person, he’s great, but there wasn’t just one side, the musical side, there was him as a person, what made him human, and what made him wonderful.

My personal favorite of Scott’s albums is Lolita Nation, so a little about it here, to give an example of what I’m talking about.  My first impression of it was Sergeant Pepper, for the way and lyrics made an indelible impression, but also that the record was a blast from start to finish, and also made you think. For example, “but when you know what it is you’re doing, then you despise it,,” a watchword that will stay with you.  The music was guitar rock, “power pop,” doesn’t seem to fit, and the twin leads suited the music., as did the big melodies, hooks and otherwise, that drove everything. And not just Scott, Donnette Thayer’s contributions are essential too, particularly “Look Away,” a favorite of mine period.

And all of what is written about here underscores the tragic turn things took. Suicide  is so hard to write about, but it must be, as that’s the ending, and also the starting point here. And as sad as it is, it’s also the right one, since it informs everything that goes before Scott’s final act.  He is missed so much, and on so many levels, everyday.

This book is informative for newcomers, a tonic for Scott fans, and a must read for music fans everywhere.  Everything, sad and happy, is handled with much grace,  and is one of the many reasons you won’t be able to put this book down.
Andrea Weiss

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