Sticky Fingers

Sticky Fingers

The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine

Book - 2017
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"Sticky fingers: the Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine is the story of how one man's ego and ambition captured the 1960s youth culture of rock and roll and turned it into a hothouse of fame, power, politics, and riches that would last for fifty years. Drawn from dozens of hours of interviews with Wenner, who granted Joe Hagan exclusive access to his vast personal archive of correspondence, rare documents, recordings, and never-before-seen images, and featuring conversations with many of the greatest superstars of our time, this biography tells how Wenner partnered with such rock luminaries as John Lennon, Mick Jagger, and Bob Dylan to manufacture an unforgettable cultural mythology in words and images every other week for five decades. Hagan renders in stunning detail the extraordinary lives behind a magazine that began as a scrappy rebellion, reinvented youth culture, and marketed the libertine world of late-sixties San Francisco in a stylish, glossy package that became a locus of influence, access, and headline-making news. From Wenner's early days as a child of divorce intoxicated by the wealth and privilege of his affluent boarding school peers to his fateful meeting with the Manhattan art school dropout who would become his wife and partner in Rolling Stone, Sticky Fingers chronicles the life of a mercurial, wide-eyed rock-and-roll fan of ambiguous sexuality but unambiguous ambition whose bottomless appetite for music, drugs, sexual liberation, and political provocation epitomized a generation. Wenner's eye for brilliant and irreverent writers--from Hunter S. Thompson and Tom Wolfe to P.J. O'Rourke and Matt Taibbi--became legend, as did his yen for controversy. Joe Hagan reveals Wenner in all of his excess and glory, from his seismic rise as a 1970s kingmaker of rock and roll, when he held court at a fabled house on California Street in San Francisco, to his ascent as an irascible media mogul of Manhattan who turned rock and roll into a wealthy and vaunted institution. Featuring on-the-record interviews with Mick Jagger, Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Elton John, Keith Richards, Pete Townshend, Yoko Ono, Billy Joel, Tom Wolfe, Cameron Crowe, Lorne Michaels, David Geffen, Dan Aykroyd, Bette Midler, and dozens of others, Hagan depicts Wenner with intimacy, nuance, and complexity--his marksmanship as an editor, his canny understanding of the zeitgeist, his endless pursuit of fame and power, and his capacity for betrayal that would earn him as many enemies as friends. An unforgettable biography of one of the most significant cultural forces of our time."--Dust jacket flaps.
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2017.
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9781101874370
Branch Call Number: 070.92 HAG
Characteristics: x, 547 pages, 32 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 25 cm


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Jan 02, 2018

Well researched and well written, the author has done a fine job. I was drawn to this book as a fomer Rolling Stone reader. As a reader of RS I inherently knew I was being shoveled a load of propaganda, but I wanted to find out about new music at the time. I endured the lifestyle claptrap of the ‘60s that was being hustled. That aside, the book details the avarice, lust, and domination (money, sex, and power) that drove Wenner from his earliest childhood to this very day. Greed and the lust for autonomy best describe Wenner’s motivation, and it is not a pretty picture. The man made and spent a fortune, but at what price?


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