THE SEQUEL TO THE NUMBER 1 BESTSELLER WORKING CLASS BOY
It’s a life too big and a story too extraordinary for just one book. Jimmy Barnes has lived many lives – from Glaswegian migrant kid to iconic front man, from solo superstar to proud father of his own musical clan. In this hugely anticipated sequel to his critically acclaimed bestseller, Working Class Boy, Jimmy picks up the story of his life as he leaves Adelaide in the back of an old truck with a then unknown band called Cold Chisel. A spellbinding and searingly honest reflection on success, fame and addiction; this self-penned memoir reveals how Jimmy Barnes used the fuel of childhood trauma to ignite and propel Australia’s greatest rock’n’roll story. But beyond the combustible merry-go-round of fame, drugs and rehab, across the Cold Chisel, solo and soul years – this is a story about how it’s never too late to try and put things right.
ISBN: 9781460752142 Publisher: HarperCollins Publication date: August 21st 2018 Pages: 512
This is the sequel to Jimmy Barnes autobiography and what a ride it was.
This book does focus a lot on Jimmy’s time with Cold Chisel for the vast majority of the book, and whilst they may bother some people, I found it very interesting; Cold Chisel was such a huge part of Jimmy’s life that to gloss over this part of his life would not do him, or the book justice. If you find excessive swearing in a book hard to cope with then it may be advisable to stay away from this book. If you can look past that it is worth the effort. You don’t need to read the first book to read this one but it will provide some background to the lead up to this book.
Jimmy was into drinking, women, and hard drugs which, according to his account, he was under the influence of every time he went on stage to perform with the band. He admits that he couldn’t sing with the band unless he was drunk and drugged beforehand. He was a very angry man. It became clear that he was running away from the life that was his past but it took many years for him to come to the realisation that if he didn’t get his life under control, and face his demons, he stood to loose all that was good and right in his life.
In amongst all this he found a beautiful lady, Jane, whom he fell in love with, married and had four children with. For him, Jane was his stabilising influence and a huge support to and for him. If he had to travel without her he was afraid that without her there he would fall off the wagon and resort to his bad habits. This did happen but eventually he decided he needed to do something about getting his life back on track before it was too late.
This is a very emotional book, raw, flawed, just like its author but that’s what makes this such a powerful story. Cold Chisel was the family he never had and it came across at just the right time. In a way, as rough as the band was, it saved him and for a time it gave him a sense of security he hadn’t experienced to date. Over time, he tried going out on his own, which worked in their favour because when he did eventually come back they had all grown up a lot.
This is a very honest and raw book about the life of a pop icon and his growth from a scared child, to a man who has reconciled with himself that he doesn’t want to numb the pain of his past, but that he owes it to himself and his family (children, grandchildren, and great grandchild) to live fully and completely in the moment. Well worth the read.
Recommend for: Adults Rating: 5 stars.