I feel honoured to have been asked to review Grant Lawrence's witty and edgy new book Dirty Windshields: the best and the worst of the Smugglers tour diaries for the Whistler Writers Festival.
Grant and I certainly seem to share a belief in a "why not try?" mantra! The story of his determination and creativity, in Dirty Windshields, further inspires me to ignore notions of artistic pursuits being potentially "frivolous", and to TRY NEW THINGS in the face of what appear to be insurmountable challenges!
The full book review can be found HERE, and below are a couple snippets from it...
What struck me the most about Dirty Windshields was the sheer mental determination and physical stamina it took to do what these young musicians did for so long: their physically demanding style of performing; the DIY-style of travelling thousands of miles in shoddy tour vans without any local assistance at all; and the hustle required to book gigs and scrape together enough money to keep tours going. Just the thought of the energy required for the day-in and day-out life of an indie musician exhausted me.
I suspect most of us have romantic images of what it must be like to be a touring rock musician — the freedom, the adoring fans, the partying, the glamourous cities and famous venues, and of course the money. Grant bursts that bubble nearly completely as he tells the tales of The Smugglers touring struggles that touched three decades, yet conveying a fondness for the lessons learned, life-long friendships made, and stories collected from living wild times at the fringes of the music industry.
Oh and the Canadiana that Grant weaves into his story-telling is worth the read alone! Here's another snippet from the review...
A band-versus-thugs car chase in Saskatchewan involving shots fired at high speed, in which the ammunition is stale cranberry muffins instead of bullets?… priceless!
OPEN LIVES: If you happen to be in Whistler on May 5th, come laugh with us both as we do readings from our new books, along with two other inspiring authors at the Whistler Writers Festival's Open Lives event.
And in the meantime, get out there and UNCORK YOURSELF a little!
Santé (to health),