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BookPeople presents: Kristin Hersh

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From BookPeople's website:

KRISTIN HERSH - Don't Suck, Don't Die

Thursday, October 15 at 7PM

Musician & Author

in conversation with Joe Gross
of the Austin American-Statesman about

Don't Suck, Don't Die:
Giving Up Vic Chesnutt

Drawing on her long and chronicled relationship on the stage with fellow musician Vic Chesnutt, Kristin Hersh, founder of the band Throwing Muses and bestselling author of Rat Girl, has penned a moving memoir that reaches across genres. Describing in rich detail and eloquent prose their mutual love of songwriting and difficulties grappling with various mental health issues, Hersh has written definitive account of a musician others found difficult to understand, let alone be with, as well a memoir that's both perceptive and intimate. Join us in welcoming this accomplished author and musician as she discusses the book, her work and life with Vic. 


Songwriter, guitarist and singer, Kristin Hersh has released over 20 records solo, with Throwing Muses and 50FOOTWAVE. She’s also the author of an acclaimed memoir — based on her teenage diary — about a particularly eventful year, titled “Rat Girl” in the USA (published by Penguin), and titled “Paradoxical Undressing” in the UK (published by Atlantic Books).


Friend, asshole, angel and mutant, singer-songwriter Vic Chesnutt came along and made us gross and broken people seem, let's say, cooler. A quadriplegic who could play only simple chords on his guitar, Chesnutt recorded seventeen critically acclaimed albums before his death in 2009, including About to Choke, North Star Deserter, and At the Cut. In 2006, NPR declared him one of the ten best living songwriters, along with Bob Dylan, Tom Waits, Paul McCartney, and Bruce Springsteen. Chesnutt's songs have also been covered by artists like Madonna, Smashing Pumpkins, R.E.M., Sparklehorse, Fugazi, and Neutral Milk Hotel.

Kristin Hersh toured with Chesnutt for nearly a decade and the two became close friends, bonding over a love of songwriting and mutual struggles with mental health. In Don't Suck, Don't Die, she describes the many seemingly small moments and free-ranging conversations she shared with Chesnutt, and and account of his tragic death. More memoir than biography, Hersh's book plumbs the sources of Chesnutt's pain and creativity more deeply than any conventional account of his life and recordings ever could. Chesnutt was difficult to understand and frequently difficult to be with, but, as Hersh reveals him, he was also wickedly funny and painfully perceptive. This intimate memoir is essential reading for anyone interested in the music or the artist.

Thank you for supporting Kristin Hersh and your local independent bookstore!