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I'm With the Band: Confessions of a Groupie

3.67  ·  Rating Details ·  11,323 Ratings  ·  589 Reviews
Pamela Des Barres was the "Sweetheart of Rock," the reigning queen of L.A.'s wild music scene. A hopeful romantic and the ultimate star-chaser, she lived life in the fast lane. She is one of the warmest, wittiest women ever to kiss and tell--and now she tells everything! HC: Morrow.
Paperback, 280 pages
Published September 1st 1988 by Jove (first published June 1987)
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Dec 16, 2015 Madeline rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
Pamela Des Barres grew up living a comfortable middle-class life in Reseda California. She had loving parents and a stable home life, and all signs pointed to her leading a perfectly ordinary life. But somewhere along the line, Pamela Miller became Pamela Des Barres, one of the most legendary groupies who had a front-row seat (or, more accurately, a backstage pass) to the greatest era in rock and roll history. I'm With the Band is her story. If you've ever watched Almost Famous and found yoursel ...more
Nov 11, 2007 Genevieve rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
her description of paul mccartney's balls is priceless.
mark monday
May 28, 2012 mark monday rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: he-said-she-said
the main thing that i remember about this book is the image of timothy hutton leaving a bathroom with a trail of toilet paper emerging like a banner from between his asscheeks. oh the humanity. this short bit acts as a capper on the basically contemptuous timothy hutton sequence. the tone throughout the rest of this sexual travelogue is less contemptuous and almost wry, deadpan. but if you are looking for any actual insight into the various celebrities, look elsewhere - this book is not for you. ...more
Sep 23, 2010 Sarah rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm ashamed to admit I read this book, but it's nearing the end of the year, people, and I need to knock out the rest of my Gilmore Girls list! This book was horrible. Absolutely horrible. I came into it with high hopes. I was expecting it would be like "Almost Famous," and was excited to read about the real-life Penny Lane.

Nope. It was just gross. First of all, Pamela Des Barres can't write to save her life. She would throw in random quotes from rock songs (i.e. "Girl, we couldn't get much high
Oct 22, 2007 Eileen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was unexpectedly inspirational for me in my formative years, I think because I hadn't heard of many women who managed to participate in the world of rock without losing their voices. Does that sound odd? It isn't when you think how many women are treated as accoutrements or decorations in that world. Pamela des Barres may have participated in that, but she did it on her own terms and created a unique and interesting identity.

This isn't a feminist text, but it isn't actually anti-femin
Jul 16, 2007 Kerstin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was my bible for a long time. Despite how it is marketed, it is less name-dropping, gossipy chick lit and more the unapologetic, heartfelt diary of one teenaged girl's sexual awakening. Granted, this particular teenaged girl happened to find herself in circumstances vastly favorable to your run-of-the-mill, zitty-boy-next-door scenarios during said awakening, but still--it's a thoroughly engaging, lovely story. Involving penii of famous dudes.
Caitlin Constantine
I have so many thoughts about this book, I'm not even sure where to begin. Let me start with the fact that it was way enjoyable to read. Des Barres has a writing style that isn't terribly polished yet is very fun and enthusiastic and even has moments of literary brilliance. I can see why she was so drawn toward performing, because she's got the spark of an artist in her soul. And it's a very juicy read, with lots of sex with rock stars (which is exactly what you would expect from a book like thi ...more
Chantel McCray
"Miss Pamela" attached herself to absolutely anyone on the rock scene, so there is some good gossip here. She brags about her sexual exploits with Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, Jim Morrison, Mick Jagger, among many, many, many others. The narrative is interwoven with excerpts from her diary, the parts of the book I found it hardest to read. In them she just seems like such an insecure, immature idiot. Absolutely anything a musician would do, no matter how disgusting, degrading or idiotic, was "inspi ...more
Aug 06, 2012 Jim rated it really liked it
Shelves: biography
When I started reading this one I expected that I would be in for a bunch of the same old sensationalist tripe that one would expect from a jaded ditch pig who has taken to sharing titillating tidbits of her past as a desperate last shot at fame and/or fortune. There is a bit of that here: in my humble opinion Pamela has the morals of a guttersnipe. Let's face it; she does drugs (and sells them)and drops her drawers for anyone who happens to be famous or has the remotest chance of becoming so. I ...more
Feb 29, 2016 Melissa rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
I listened to the Audible version (read by the author). I expected a really exciting tell-all about a magical and turbulent time in American pop history and some of the big personalities that inhabited my Los Angeles stomping grounds 20 years or so before I came on the scene. I was interested in a little behind the scenes 411 about Jim Morrison, Mick Jagger, Jimmy Page, Frank Zappa, etc. Instead, this was a vapid, nearly 11 hour long monologue which was, for the most part, devoid of anything fas ...more
Mar 12, 2009 Andy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: rock-sleaze
The best rock books about the Sixties are ironically not written by the musicians themselves but all the people peripheral to the action, and Pamela Des Barres of the GTO's is one. I like the stories about the legendary Hollywood Teen Fair, the early glam rock days at the Continental Hyatt House and The GTO's. There's not a boring page in this one!
Mark Desrosiers
Nov 23, 2007 Mark Desrosiers rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs
Miss Pamela is actually a fun, insightful writer (she calls her early bra-stuffing "bewitching fraudulence" for example), and little did any of the boys she bedded and fellated know that she'd use her experience to reframe rock history. Here, we begin with Captain Beefheart (after an interval in which she must write down Beatle Paul's name every time she farts) and go on to Iron Butterfly, the Byrds, the Doors (ugh), Frank Zappa (barf), the Flying Burrito Brothers, Led Zeppelin... um... Don John ...more
So far I'm on page 11X. I'm wondering if I should keep reading this book. Up to this point this woman is one of the most annoying people I've ever read. If she were a teenager now she'd be writing things like: "OMG! Like really! His PENIS was so beautiful! HA!"
The details are lax. The book so far is like a hippy fantasy. I am continuing to read this in the hopes that this woman develops a brain and if not that then some kind of self esteem or whatever she needs to get a better hobby than just og
Nov 16, 2015 Holly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
This woman has a lot of interesting stories to tell and her writing was very easy to read. The 2005 version includes an introduction by Dave Navarro and he says that female readers will all be jealous of Pamela Des Barres. I think that's a dangerous assumption to make, considering she spends all of her time throwing away her dreams, being a dance escort, and can't find happiness without a man to give it to her. After a certain point I feel kind of bad for Pamela because she just non stop talks a ...more
Sep 21, 2016 Frona rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I picked up this book because I wanted to know what makes one choose such a peculiar life-style as one of a groupy doubtless is. The book didn't give me the anwser, but perhaps showed me the cultural environment where asking questions like that is just as pointless as to expect any reason at all. At its best, this book is a document of the sixties in LA, of how freedom and lunacy, reality and fantasy intermingled. Unfortunatly the author's voice remains hidden in the neverending descriptions of ...more
Gina M Jordan
I had a difficult time getting into this at first, it read like my 12 year old diary & was too self-centered and frothy, flighty to the extreme and made me remember those years of being on the rollercoaster of having my worth determined by whether I was wanted or valued by another, or not. Unfortunately for Pam Miller, she never seems to have learned to value herself, even when she's trying to convince us she has, her story tells the truth. Miller was a woman who had to be "in love" with jus ...more
Feb 16, 2012 Jeannie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in this subject matter, anyone wanting to be scandalized!
Shelves: i-own
I gave this book 4 stars because I really did like it but then again...... I really didn't. I'm so conflicted on how to review this book. I'm not sure how to describe the way Pamela writes, poetic at times, self fullfilling at others, plain out not understandable throughout most of it...she rambles a lot.

Still I have to say that I enjoyed this book because of the era.....the history of a place in time that will never be again. Rock n roll, hippies, free love, groupies, drugs, sex and all that wi
Jan 27, 2008 Tatiana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who has stood in the front row, lost in the music, dreaming of backstage access
Recommended to Tatiana by: sucked in by the cover photo
This book was so great I plowed through it in less than 24 hours after getting it. Miss Pamela was a true rock n roll courtesan and glided with ease through the lives of legends like Frank Zappa, Jimmy Page, and Mick Jagger. At the heart of it all, she is a true super fan and she never "grew out" of the ability to go stark raving mad for a guy rocking out on a guitar. I could have done without so much of the straight-from-the-diary introspection, but it also made the memoir more accurate by gett ...more
May 04, 2012 Melee rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir-bio
Mmm, salacious readings!

Or not.

This really wasn't as bad as I thought it'd be. Miss Pamela is frank, but not explicit. Actually, I debated for a while whether to read this or not, but I finally decided I would. It was all done in the name of research, though, so I'm glad it was relatively mild. (To get in the proper mindset for a story I'm writing, I am reading almost every sixties memoir/biography I find that looks interesting. Though let's face it, I'd probably end up doing that at some point
Oct 27, 2011 Susie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2011
This was a complete and utter train wreck of a book. The writing was horrendous, and if not for the subject matter, I felt like it was written by a 6th grader. The storytelling was shoddy and sloppy. I largely just felt sorry for the author. But despite all this, I could not put it down. Sleeping with either Jimmy Page or Mick Jagger would have been a life accomplishment, but Miss P slept with both of them; she had pseudo-relationships with both of them, among a number of others. She nannied for ...more
Mary vO
Sep 08, 2008 Mary vO rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Any book that involves knocking boots with Jimmy Page is alright by me. Always chose him over Robert Plant, myself.

Seems Ms. Des Barres didn't knock out nearly as many brain cells as she lets on, as this is a very densely detailed (down to Rod Stewart's outfits and Mick Jagger's half-smiles) account of her many summers of love. Best line: "I was turned inside out, pulsating with creamy pink desire for the most coveted hunk of drool material." Read the book to find out just who she was drooling o
Stacey  D.
This entertaining tale could have easily gone awry, if it weren't in the hands of a credible, lucid and intelligent author. Des Barres brings us her juicy, sex and love-flled story that took place in the flower power-hippie counterculture-peace-free love-sex, drugs and rock 'n roll timemachine that earmarked the 1960's through the mid-70's.

This memoir is starstudded with legendary musicians, actors and very memorable characters whom the divine Miss P met and knew intimately (wow!) way back when
Brooke Everett
Oct 30, 2013 Brooke Everett rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If given the opportunity, I would bang Mick Jagger in a heartbeat. So, naturally, I was super into reading the memoirs of the woman who had done just that. And it was young, beautiful, late 60s / early 70s Mick - all pillowy lips, shaggy hair, and the smallest ass on the planet.

I love listening to my parents' stories from this era; I've often thought I was born in the wrong time period. The music, the clothes, the new attitudes just bubbling up - it was an amazing time in America. My parents hun
Oct 23, 2011 Anne rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I wanted to read about the rock'n roll life from a woman's perspective after The Dirt, but reading this is like reading a girl's journal or teen magazine, only the boys are rock stars. And if I ever wondered: A girl's true dream & ambition is to marry and have kids. Only these husbands/fathers are rock stars.

So disappointed. Or to write in Pamela's style: Sooooo DISAPPOINTED. I can't believe she's pursued a career in journalism, this book is not well written. Maybe it's by choice, I just don
Very cool book. Pamela Des Barres, our groupie author, is a natural writer. Her style is delightfully explicit & sincere. But I didn't really read the book.

I only read the chapter on Jim Morrison. ;)

Here's a little teaser.


"He clutched the microphone like it was a crucial part of his body and he moaned like he really meant it. He moved with the unnatural grace of someone out of control, grounded only by the fact that his feet happened to be on the floor. On top of all of this, he loo
Olga Nikolaeva
Jul 24, 2016 Olga Nikolaeva rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars, really!
I only had some minor problems with the language and sometimes it got too confusing. Otherwise, one big like to this book!
I read a lot of reviews, mostly negative ones, which made me postpone reading this book. But I enjoyed it a lot once I started! At work, digging into the history of rock music, from its facade, that bright and glorious side that we read about in the musicology discipline... Well, this book was a rather thrilling and unexpected experience!
Yet, it's not simp
Aug 06, 2014 Janitag rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites
I loved loved loved this book and the spirit of it.

Every chapter made me holler with laughter or grin to myself behind the pages. When I was a teenager, I always dreamed of a life as a groupie. Music is everything to me, still is, always will be and I am sad that the people who have brought so much to me will never know the amount of inspiration they have brought to my life. I was naive and in love with every possible rock'n'roller ever since I had my first favourite band as a little girl.

If you enjoy reading about sex, drugs and rock & roll, then this book will be to your liking. It's what I consider a "guilty pleasure" read - complete brain candy - filling, but with no lasting nourishing value. I occasionally like gossipy books about celebrities, as well as rock stars and this has both of each. I read it some years ago, but from what I remember there is a lot about Mick Jagger, Keith Moon and even more of Jimmy Page of the late 60's and early 70's. Free sex and love with an ...more
Nov 04, 2007 Ann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book by the pool one summer - scandalous, slutty and impossible to put down. A groupie's memoir of backstage adventures with Mick Jagger, Jimmy Page, Keith Moon, Waylon Jennings, and Jim Morrison, among others. She traveled with Led Zeppelin; lived in sin with Don Johnson; turned down a date with Elvis Presley; and was close friends with Robert Plant, Gram Parsons, Ray Davies, and Frank Zappa. Warm, witty, and sexy, this kiss-and-tell–all stands out as the perfect chronicle of one of ...more
May 21, 2016 Rachel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club
The writing is pretty atrocious at times but the stories are entertaining. Plus, good or bad, it made me feel like I was reading my teenage/young adult diary--though mine were without all the real rock stars of course (just wannabe ones). Also, what does it say about me that I cried at the end when she quoted Springsteen? This should really be a 2 1/2 star review but I'll round up to 3 because of the tears.
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Pamela Des Barres aka Miss Pamela (born Pamela Ann Miller on September 9, 1948) is a former rock and roll groupie, author, and magazine writer.

Des Barres was born in Reseda, California. Her mother was a housewife and her father worked for Anheuser-Busch and occasionally worked as a gold miner. She idolized the Beatles and Elvis Presley as a child, and fantasized about meeting and dating her favori
More about Pamela Des Barres...

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“November 18. . . I dig musicians, I feel they have the most to offer me mentally and emotionally because they think basically along the same lines that I do; extremely creative people. Music is Life. As Captain Beefheart once said 'God is a perfect musical note.” 10 likes
“I was floating around in the Garden of Eden, thrilled to be a human being at the Human-Be-In, knowing the world could be saved if we loved one another. I was draped in flowers, bestowed upon me by my brothers and sisters. I was laughing, loving, breathing Princess of Peace...” 7 likes
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