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Please kill me. Il punk nelle parole dei suoi protagonisti

4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  21,276 Ratings  ·  889 Reviews
Esta é a história contada sobre os anos 70 e a Blank Generation. Narrando o nascimento do qe hoje se chama punk, desde a Factory de Andy Warhol até o Max’s Kansas City nos anos 60 e 70, chegando ao Reino Unido nos anos 80, os autores, Legs McNeil - que cunhou o termo punk - e Gilliam McCain, apresentam a história do incompreendido fenômeno pop. Em centenas de entrevistas c ...more
Paperback, 631 pages
Published 2006 by Baldini Castoldi Dalai (first published 1996)
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Mike DaRonco
Sep 02, 2007 Mike DaRonco rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Man, Lou Reed is such a dick.
I read most of this one night while working the graveyard shift at a very institutional group home in the real methy part of SE Portland. I was the only person awake and not severely mentally-ill in the whole building, except for the parole guys, who I was pretty sure were faking it, or at least greatly exaggerating. There were these big sliding glass doors where of course the methhead psychos lurking in the dark could watch me mopping, all lit up, but I couldn't see out, and most nights I'd be ...more
Jan 11, 2008 Noel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely inhaled this. Legs' view is that punk was a strictly American phenomenon with its roots in The Doors, The Velvet Underground, The MC5, & The Stooges, and that the British got it completely wrong and basically killed the movement. And he presents that argument well.

Pretty much everyone in the book appears to be exactly what I already thought:
* Jim Morrison was often drunk and frequently terrible live, and wrote really bad high school-grade poetry.
* David Bowie was a rather uptigh
Jul 22, 2007 matt rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people taking tallys on the amount of STD's the MC5 acrewed
As an avid reader (and subsequent loather) of "punk rock" history, I was excited to get into this. And although I didn't get exactly what I was looking for, it's certainly worth a read for those who can stomach it.

I can't claim to not like oral histories having only previously read the "People's Oral History" by Zinn which is a blood orange compared to Wayne Kramers' red delicious. That being said, I found this book far too gossipy and "sceney" making me think that cliques in music existed long
BAM The Bibliomaniac
4.5 stars just not a 5 because I don't think a reread will affect me the same way

Little did I realize that the punk movement started as early as 1968 with the Velvet Underground and amphetamine usage. Thus begins Please Kill Me, a compilation of interviews with some of the most influential talent in the industry and on the streets through the early 90s. Photos throughout

The book is broken into chapters that follow a timeline that flow through music progression and drug prevalence. I'm seriously
Nov 12, 2008 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Laura by: Jessica Gutteridge
If you love gossipy oral histories, this is the book for you. It's probably better if you're familiar with the music, but that's not a prerequisite. And it's often hysterically funny, depending on who's being interviewed -- Richard Lloyd and Richard Hell both made me laugh out loud a number of times.

One of the best parts: several people are talking about how Jim Morrison was an 18-carat prick, and Ray Manzarek comes along saying, "Jim was a shaman." I'll let Danny Fields have the last word on Mr
Punk rockers would make terrible dinner party guests. They will break your good china and roll around in the shards. They will defacate on the dessert. They will shoot up in your bathroom. They will hit on your grandmother. They also should make for interesting reading and, for the most part, the book delivered. I learned:
*Nico drank good wine.
*Phil Spector drank bad wine.
*Nancy Spungen was advised to go to England to clean up and kick her serious drug habit. That's where she met Sid Vicious.
Rebecca McNutt
This is the most extensive book I've ever read on punk culture, from the fashion to the music. It even briefly mentions similar styles, like goth.
Dec 26, 2008 Thomas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
when i was a kid and i would whine about not getting new shoes or some stupid shit my mom would sing that old Rolling Stones song, "You can't always get what you want" only she wouldn't sing it she would talk it like it was some ancient wisdom from the lips of Plato inserting pauses to let the complicated cadence of his words sink in, "but if you try some just might find... you get what you need." It always pissed me off and made me embarrassed that my mom thought she was being cool q ...more
Things I learned from this book...

-Everyone involved in the early American punk scene was one big incestuous relationship. Everyone had sex with everyone else at one point or another. Male, female, transsexuals, johns, etc.
-Everyone was on drugs. How did punk even get started? I mean really, it amazes me that punk even remotely got off it's feet, everyone was so messed up.
-Patti Smith still kind of freaks me out, but you have to respect her determination.
-Lou Reed is a douchebag.
-Even comple
May 15, 2007 Meredith rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
i loved this book. i picked it up on a whim, thinking "hm, i don't really know enough about punk," and i couldn't put it down. (which became amusing: what's LESS punk than opting out of a crazy fun party on a friday night to stay in and read a book about punk?)

the book is compiled entirely of excerpts from interviews with all the people who were involved in the New York punk scene. Leggs McNeil, the author, was one of the founders of Punk! magazine, and was actually the person who came up with t
Jan 06, 2009 Troy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, read-in-2015
After the horrendous disappointment that was American Hardcore, I decided to pick up this book, an old favorite, to see if my younger self was delusional. Maybe this book, which I loved so much, was a steaming pile of dog shit?

So I picked it up, trepidatious, and started randomly. And I was hooked. After careening through many chapters and completely losing myself in the crazy panoply of deranged and contradictory voices, I stopped reading and started from the beginning. And read the book straig
There's a lot to like about this book. But is it a "definitive history of punk rock"? Fuck no. Not even close.

Although PLEASE KILL ME features tons of great material from the people who were there at Ground Zero during the Factory and CBGBs scenes, I wound up fucking pissed at this book's contention that punk began with the Velvets and ended with the deaths of Sid Vicious and Johnny Thunders.

Bull fucking shit.

There was zero mention of the West Coast scene (which had already birthed the Runawa
Dr. Detroit
Oct 09, 2009 Dr. Detroit rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Along with Dave Marsh’s “Before I Get Old,” Ian Hunter’s ”Diary of a Rock N’ Roll Star,” and Tony Sanchez’s “Up and Down With the Rolling Stones,” “Please Kill Me” is right up there on the Mount Rushmore of Rawk Tales from the Naked City but if you come here in search of Malcolm McLaren, Sex Pistols, The Clash, Generation X, or The Stranglers, look away now.

Although, inevitably, there is a bit of overlap with old-school Brit punk, just beginning to take seed across the pond somewhere along this
Oct 27, 2011 Nate rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, owned, music
One of the most purely entertaining books I've ever read. I can't count how many times I've read this book, whether it's cover to cover or just skimming through for particularly hilarious/bizarre/noteworthy parts. I love all of the 70s New York bands and artists that get covered in this book, so this definitely fulfills the role of the historical retrospective and sated all of the curiosity I had about the era. The other awesome facet of this book is the pure lurid and gross realism of the stori ...more
This book is chocked full of fantastic anecdotes--the types of stories that make you proud to have such crazed, self-destructive icons, and also really comforted that you'll probably never be that bad. Some favorites include: the Warhol Superstars insisting that Jim Morrison copped the leather pant look from them and that David Bowie was nothing but a wierd English hippie in a dress before they made him over; Iggy Pop inciting a riot with a bunch of bikers in Detroit while wearing a tutu and a G ...more
At times I can't help but think that Legs McNeil gives himself a little too much credit in terms of defining what came to be known as "punk" or "punk rock." However, one thing you could never take away from Legs is this amazing book. Out of all the same old rehashed books on the history of rock music, "Please Kill Me" is not only refreshing, but it may be the definitive source on the underground rock and roll culture from the '60s onward. It was wise for the stories to be told in an oral history ...more
May 26, 2012 Kevin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As any decent music fan will testify, punk was not an English invention. It started in the suburbs or Detroit and New York in the 60's. Bands like The Velvet Underground, The Stooges and The MC5 fired up a generation that included The New York Dolls and The Ramones. The fact that the movement was named Punk long before the Sex Pistols and the Clash came on the scene should give punk fans a decent history lesson.

Nevertheless, this is an oral history so the history is told through quotes from such
Jul 06, 2010 Rod rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Goodreads defines the five-star rating as "It was amazing." I've given books five-star ratings before, then asked myself, "Was it amazing?", and then had to admit to myself that the answer was "no" and changed my rating accordingly. In the case of Please Kill Me I don't even have to think about it. It was amazing. I've read it three times and I'm sure before long I'll probably make it four. Greatest rock 'n' roll book ever and one of the greatest oral histories ever.
Mar 15, 2007 courtney rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i learned not to leave a member of the dead boys alone with a guinea pig.
Jan 19, 2009 Rachel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is an inside look into the New York punk scene during the late seventies. It's foul so don't read it!
Ben Winch
Feb 04, 2012 Ben Winch rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: music, problematic
Am I the only one who thinks Legs McNeill is a pretentious tosser and the omnipresence of the so-called 'blank generation' is the next-worst thing to the previous media-takeover by the boomers? The amount of marketing/repackaging that's gone into this shit has just about reached utter absurdity, accelerated by the internet beyond anything anyone could have dreamed of. And yeah, some of it was good. But I'm supposed to care about who sucked Stiv Bators' dick when his band is maybe 50% the intensi ...more
Aug 02, 2007 Matt rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The explicit redundancy of the punk scene is offensive. While some of the stories are interesting and the first hand account of it all is better than most, it's just boring. Listening to how f'd up people get has become tiresome. It isn't awesome anymore.

That said, some of the stories are pretty ok. If you're a disillusioned person looking for something to hang on to look no further. Your rebellious ways are all documented and ... shockingly enough ... they happened more than 30 years ago. It's
Apr 27, 2017 M.liss rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So many good stories! The posturing and antics of the Factory set, Candy Darling's incredible poise and diplomacy, Edie's drug-detecting thievery radar, Nico meeting Jim Morrison (who freaks out on acid and whatever else and runs around naked on the roof), the MC5 and the completely disgusting Fun House, Iggy out of his mind on quaaludes and dope, constantly bloody and injured but somehow indestructible, The Dolls and that absolute disaster of a junkie Johnny Thunders, the conniving Malcolm McLa ...more
Jul 13, 2016 Stephanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
From a conversation between Duncan Hannah and Danny Fields (as remembered by Duncan Hannah):

So we went to Danny's loft on Twentieth Street and smoked some hash. We were all looking around his house, at all the pictures on the walls—because he had photos of everyone—so I was pumping him for what they were like. I kept saying, "Well, what's Iggy like?"

He'd say, "Well, he's an asshole."

Then I'd say, "Well what's—God you must know everyone—well, what's Wayne Kramer like?"

And he'd say, "Well, he's an
Robert Beveridge
Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain, Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk (Grove, 1997)

Let's get this out of the way first: the title is misleading, unless “Punk” is referring to the New York-based magazine of the same name, for this book centers on a couple of blocks in New York City (specifically, those containing GBGB's and Max's Kansas City), along with tales from other places lived by bands who ended up making those bars their second homes-- the Dead Boys, the Sex Pistols, etc. If
Jul 01, 2013 Patrick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thought this was exellent. One of the reasons was that although it was an oral history, it was structured so that each bit moved the overall narrative forward. I don't think I've ever read any other oral history that has done as good a job with that. Usually, they will present multiple perspectives of stuff, but I don't think i've ever read one where the oral history is constructed so skillfully to move the story forward.

I thought it was interesting in that it showed the throughline from Jim Mor
Nov 11, 2015 Veleda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, music
The main message of this book is that just about everyone involved in the origins of punk rock was a total asshole.

As an oral history, Please Kill Me is excellent. It always maintains a coherent, engaging narrative. It could have been a mess and it isn't.

Throughout the book I was torn between wishing I could have been there to see it all, and being, really, really glad I was nowhere near it.

The book both benefits and suffers from Legs McNeil's inside status. On the one hand, he was actually ther
Nestor Rychtyckyj
This is really the definitive history of punk (at least in the USA) and covers the pre-history (VU, Stoohes, New York Dolls) as well as the birth of the New York scene with the Ramones, Talkking Heads, Blondie etc. The book is a great read - almost everybody that was part of the scene and was around is in the book and the stories they tell are incredibly hilarious and fascinating. If you're interested in the music (as I most certainly am) it's impossible to put this book down. This actually came ...more
May 25, 2016 Ryan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
All the Iggy Pop stories alone make the book worthwhile. Patty Smith was badly injured once and everyone was talking about it. She fell from a stage during a show. At least one person thought "She's hurt? Iggy's been falling from stages for years and he's fine." There's another account of him tumbling all the way down a huge staircase in a house in Ann Arbor, then sort of shaking himself off and walking out the door.

The book is an excellent read, the format of spliced-together first person acco
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Hey, how come I can't add any books to my list? 1 19 Jun 04, 2013 08:32AM  
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  • Gimme Something Better: The Profound, Progressive, and Occasionally Pointless History of Bay Area Punk from Dead Kennedys to Green Day
  • Our Band Could Be Your Life: Scenes from the American Indie Underground 1981-1991
  • Rip it Up and Start Again
  • Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs
  • Main Lines, Blood Feasts, and Bad Taste: A Lester Bangs Reader
  • We Owe You Nothing: Punk Planet: The Collected Interviews
  • Ranters and Crowd Pleasers: Punk in Pop Music, 1977-1992
  • Punk Rock: An Oral History
  • Passion Is a Fashion: The Real Story of the Clash
  • American Hardcore: A Tribal History
  • Our Noise: The Story of Merge Records, the Indie Label That Got Big and Stayed Small
  • Lobotomy: Surviving the Ramones
  • A Riot of Our Own: Night and Day with the Clash
  • No Wave: Post-Punk. Underground. New York. 1976-1980.
  • Last Gang in Town: The Story and Myth of the Clash

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“Rock & Roll is so great, people should start dying for it. You don't understand. The music gave you back the beat so you could dream. A whole generation running with a Fender bass...

The people just have to die for the music. People are dying for everything else, so why not the music? Die for it. Isn't it pretty? Wouldn't you die for something pretty?

Perhaps I should die. After all, all the great blues singers did die. But life is getting better now.

I don't want to die. Do I? - Lou Reed (1965-1968)”
“The old sound was alcoholic. The tradition was finally broken. The music is sex and drugs and happy. And happy is the joke the music understands best. Ultra sonic sounds on records to cause frontal lobotomies. Hey, don't be afraid. You'd better take drugs and learn to love PLASTIC. All diffrent kinds of plastic- pliable, rigid, colored, colorful, nonattached plastic. - Lou Reed (1965-1968)” 8 likes
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