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CHEETAH CHROME: A DEAD BOY’S TALE FROM THE FRONT LINES OF PUNK ROCK


Book coverAlright so Cheetah Chrome wrote a book chronicling his misadventures in the Dead Boys and beyond but the biggest surprise is… Cheetah’s a good writer. Who knew?

The introduction opens with a heartbreaking account of how he found out that his best friend Stiv had died. This sets the tone from the beginning that this will be an extremely honest and visceral look at his past.

For all the damage that years of drug use have taken on his body, Cheetah’s mind has held on tight to the details of his memories. This includes many great Dead Boys road stories that confirm everything I’ve ever suspected and more (little girl).

Trashed hotel rooms, drugs and booze, fights, sex with underage girls, arrests, all delivered in a very casual way with very little of the “look at me” ego that spills out of other books in this genre.

A couple of the most interesting bits to pop out to me:

– “Young Loud & Snotty” was recorded with the idea that it was just demos.

– Cheetah’s guitar on that record was a cheap Les Paul knockoff through a Sound City head.

– The first time he met Johnny Thunders he threw a drink in Cheetah’s face.

– He gave Iggy a bunch of downers before a Stooges show that resulted in a brief 3 song disaster.

– Many of the stories involve pills, piss, vomit or shit.

I was really impressed at the strength and style of the writing in this memoir. From his early days as a teenage delinquent to the whirlwind rise and fall as a member of Ohio’s premier punk band, the stories and anecdotes are all you’d hoped they’d be.  Do yourself a favor and check this one out.


4 out of 5

Smog Veil
Cheetah Chrome: A Dead Boy’s Tale: From the Front Lines of Punk Rock