Kea Giles (Asmus)
Janis Ian narrates her own book so well that I "couldn't put it down." Well done. It's a gripping biography, interesting & insightful. And Ian does a good job of sharing trauma without being maudlin. I did find the book somewhat stressful though *spoiler alert* - one story after another of pain and trauma and let-downs almost made me want to stop listening. But, as they say, it all turned out OK in the end -- though it's not the end -- she will have to put out a second book to cover the next 20 years or thereabouts.
Janis Ian is leading a remarkable life. She stormed into the public eye with the brilliant and socially controversial “Society’s Child” single in 1967 at the tender age of 13. A tremendously talented song writer and performer she continues to deliver wonderful music to this day. But what a life, it took a while to build on her meteoric start but she did. She leaves little untold from tilted sexuality to enduring a rocky heterosexual marriage to becoming secure in herself as a gay woman. She enjoyed major financial success then near ruin at the hands of a crooked manager and cruel IRS. Janis was an early embracer of the digital/internet world and the artistic freedom it offered. And all along the way are many, many lyrical, lovely songs. I really enjoyed this book and Janis tells her own story so very well. One thing that does not come through in the book though is what a great performer she is, and how witty and fun she is as a performer.
This is a full-on audio book experience. The fact that Audible chose to produce it was an incredible choice on their part. With Janice Ian singing and playing her own songs, even going so far as to reenact the process of writing a song... words just cannot express how amazing this book is.
There were so many! I couldn't pick just one!
The music, the singing, the emotions as she recounts the joys and sorrows in her own life... this book is incredible
Yes! I squirreled away time as often as possible to finish this book.
Better reviewers than I have put into words the incredible experience of listening to this book - I will not overshadow them. This is the story of rags to riches to rags, of pain, of joy... download this book!
Janet Ian is a truly amazing person. Her talent as a signer, guitarist and song writer is obvious by her music but she's also a great writer. The road to success and back again is inspirational, even to those of us who lack musical talent. I especially liked how she blended her songs into the book, something I've found lacking in other biographies about musicians. She definitely deserved the Grammy for this performance!
Wonderful singing by Janis
Her ability to recover from her lowest moments.
Her amazing voice.
Disaster breeds emotional and physical strength.
One of my favorite listening experiences!!
I have loved Janis Ian's music since the early 70's and was hopeful about this bio. Unfortunately, it was almost entirely composed of how the world was hard on her, and how wonderful and brilliant she was in the midst of it all.
I have lived a somewhat tough life too, but learned a long time ago that very little happens to us that was not, in at least some level, a result of our own choices and actions. Janis may have had some hard knocks, but never takes any responsibility for her own choices or actions. That leaves me wondering how much else was exaggerated or more the result of her own than she would have us believe.
I still love her music, but am now a lot more jaded about the life story behind it...
Janis Ian is the ultimate story teller! Her honesty and talents shine in this very moving performance. I feel as if I know her personally after reading this wonderful book, I highly recommend it!!
I am in awe of the ratings by others since I have tried now for over 3 hours to get SOMETHING out of this book. It's not there. It's boring. It is an account of Janis Ian who thought she was all that and her struggle in the music industry because her lyrics were "radical". But trust me, there is NO balance. Yes, it was a hard time in the 60's but it was a hard time for a lot of musicians with alternative music. Anyway, it's boring and whiny.
Normally, I do not like autobiographies nor audio books with music in it, but it worked for this book. I found the book entertaining and an easy listen. Having the author play the guitar and sing parts of songs really added to the experience. A 3.5 mostly because of the audio...I don't think it would be as good in written form.
Erstwhile librarian and tech salesperson. Favorite genres - history, biography, and mystery.
Besides the interesting and heartfelt stories, Janis singing parts of her songs was unbelievably wonderful. I grew up with these songs and it was great to hear what lead to her writing them. I also just loved listening to her voice.
There were so many great moments! The one I enjoyed the most was her story around the writing of "At Seventeen".
Although Janis Ian had some awful things in her life, her telling of her story is always humorous, her reading of it makes it even more so. Her sense of humor in the good times and the bad times is amazing.
I did stay up until I finished it in one day.
For you boomers, this is a must. For anyone else, it is still a must.