To Hell and Back: My Life in Johnny Thunders' Heartbreakers, in the Words of the Last Man Standing

To Hell and Back: My Life in Johnny Thunders' Heartbreakers, in the Words of the Last Man Standing


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There have been many books written about Johnny Thunders and the Heartbreakers, but only by people who weren’t there. Walter Lure was—from the band's chaotic beginnings on New York's Lower East Side, through a now-legendary UK tour with the Sex Pistols and the Clash, and on to a yearlong stay in London—eyewitness and midwife to the birth of UK punk.

Now, he tells his story in To Hell and Back, a thrilling ride through the clubs and dives of two continents, in the company of one of the most notorious junkies in rock 'n' roll history. Drawing from his own contemporary journals, Lure paints a vivid portrait of life in both cities, during perhaps the most crucial musical uprising of the past forty years…the music, the characters, the clothes, the fights, the drugs, the orgies, the lot.
Lure lays bare his own battle with drugs, and reflects upon his life after the band's split—rising to become a Wall Street fixture yet still finding time to make music.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781493051694
Publisher: Backbeat
Publication date: 03/15/2020
Pages: 280
Sales rank: 139,896
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Walter Lure
Walter Lure continues to play live and record. His latest album, Wacka Lacka Boom Bop A Loom Bam Boo, received great reviews across the media spectrum, and his most recent (spring 2019) tour sold out venues throughout the US. He is also heavily involved with Jungle Records’ regular reexaminations of the Heartbreakers’ recorded legacy, and maintains an active presence on social media.

Dave Thompson
Dave Thompson is the author of over 150 books, including co-written memoirs with New York Doll Sylvain Sylvain, Motown legends Brian and Eddie Holland (forthcoming), Hawkwind’s Nik Turner, the Yardbirds' Jim McCarty, Fairport Convention’s Judy Dyble, and more. He is a columnist for Goldmine magazine, and his work has also appeared in Rolling Stone, Spin, Alternative Press, Mojo, Record Collector, and many other major publications. He has contributed to music documentaries produced by VH-1, A&E, the BBC, and others. Born in the UK, Thompson is now a US resident living in Delaware.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction 1

1 From Floral Park to the Fillmore 5

2 That Kid 19

3 Watching the Dolls 29

4 Heartbroken 39

5 Rookie of the Year 49

6 Cash In, Dope Out 57

7 I'm Not the New Kid Anymore 71

8 Farewell to Manhattan 79

9 And Hello to London 89

10 Anarchy on Tour (or Not) 99

11 Christmas 107

12 Drugs 119

13 Track Marks 129

14 Oh Carol 141

15 Bands 151

16 Chinese Rocks 161

17 Deportees 175

18 Back to London 185

19 Over the Rainbow 195

20 Hearts Breaking 203

21 Clean-Up Time 211

Epilogue 227

Appendix 1 Johnny Thunders & the Heartbreakers Discography 237

Appendix 2 Walter Lure Discography 245

Index 249

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