About the book
WINNER OF THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD It was the summer Coltrane died, the summer of love and riots, and the summer when a chance encounter in Brooklyn led two young people on a path of art, devotion, and initiation. Patti Smith would evolve as a poet and performer, and Robert Mapplethorpe would direct his highly provocative style toward photography. Bound in innocence and enthusiasm, they traversed the city from Coney Island to Forty-Second Street, and eventually to the celebrated round table of Max's Kansas City, where the Andy Warhol contingent held court. In 1969, the pair set up camp at the Hotel Chelsea and soon entered a community of the famous and infamous, the influential artists of the day and the colorful fringe. It was a time of heightened awareness, when the worlds of poetry, rock and roll, art, and sexual politics were colliding and exploding. In this milieu, two kids made a pact to take care of each other. Scrappy, romantic, committed to create, and fueled by their mutual dreams and drives, they would prod and provide for one another during the hungry years.Just Kids begins as a love story and ends as an elegy. It serves as a salute to New York City during the late sixties and seventies and to its rich and poor, its hustlers and hellions. A true fable, it is a portrait of two young artists' ascent, a prelude to fame.
"[Just Kids] reminds us that innocence, utopian ideals, beauty and revolt are enlightenment's guiding stars in the human journey. Her book recalls, without blinking or faltering, a collective memory - one that guides us through the present and into the future." Michael Stipe, Time magazine
"Riveting and exquisitely crafted."--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Patti Smith Biography
Patricia Lee Smith (born December 30, 1946) is an American singer, songwriter, poet, painter and author who became an influential component of the New York City punk rock movement with her 1975 debut album Horses.Called the "punk poet laureate", Smith fused rock and poetry in her work. Her most widely known song is "Because the Night", which was co-written with Bruce Springsteen. It reached number 13 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1978 and number five in the U.K. In 2005, Smith was named a Commander of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture. In 2007, she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.On November 17, 2010, Smith won the National Book Award for her memoir Just Kids. The book fulfilled a promise she had made to her former long-time partner, Robert Mapplethorpe. She placed 47th in Rolling Stone magazine's list of 100 Greatest Artists published in December 2010 and was also a recipient of the 2011 Polar Music Prize.
Early lifePatricia Lee Smith was born on December 30, 1946, at Grant Hospital in Chicago to Beverly Smith, a jazz singer turned waitress, and Grant Smith, a machinist at a Honeywell plant. The family was of part Irish ancestry and Patti was the eldest of four children, with siblings Linda, Kimberly, and Todd. When Smith was four, the family moved from Chicago to Germantown, Philadelphia, before heading to Pitman, New Jersey and later to The Woodbury Gardens section of Deptford Township, New Jersey.At this early age, Smith was exposed to her first records, including Shrimp Boats by Harry Belafonte, Patience and Prudence's The Money Tree, and Another Side of Bob Dylan, which her mother gave to her. Smith graduated from Deptford Township High School in 1964 and went to work in a factory. She gave birth to her first child, a daughter, on April 26, 1967, and placed her for adoption.
1967–1973: New YorkIn 1967, she left Glassboro State College (now Rowan University) and moved to Manhattan in New York City. She met photographer Robert Mapplethorpe there while working at a bookstore with friend and poet Janet Hamill. She and Mapplethorpe had an intense romantic relationship, which was tumultuous as the pair struggled with times of poverty, and Mapplethorpe with his own sexuality. Smith considers Mapplethorpe to be one of the most important people in her life, and in her book Just Kids refers to him as "the artist of my life." Mapplethorpe's photographs of her became the covers for the Patti Smith Group albums, and they remained lifelong friends until Mapplethorpe's death in 1989. Her book and album The Coral Sea is an homage to the life of Mapplethorpe and Just Kids tells the story of their relationship. She also wrote essays for several of Mapplethorpe's books, starting from one, at his request, for his posthumous Flowers.She went to Paris with her sister in 1969, and started busking and doing performance art. When Smith returned to Manhattan, she lived ... Read full biography
|Publisher:||HarperCollins Publishers Inc|
|Languages:||| English ||
|Publication date:||Dec. 27, 2010|
|First Publication Date:||None|
|Publication City/Country:||New York, NY, United States|