The Female Rock Star Biographies You Need To Read

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  • We love nothing better than a juicy, tell-all biography, and when it’s written by a kick-ass female rock star, then all the better.

    We love nothing better than a juicy, tell-all autobiography, and when it’s written by a kick-ass female rock star, all the better. This week Chrissie Hynde announced she is publishing hers, chronicling her rock n roll life as front woman of The Pretenders.

    “I hope it makes you want to dance, have fun, dig out some old records and maybe even root through your closet and dust off your guitar,” she said of the book, which is due out in the autumn. Until then, here’s four more biographies from amazing female rock stars…

    Kim Gordon – Girl In A Band

    The Sonic Youth star’s book starts off with a bang – an account of the band’s tense final gig after it was announced Kim and guitarist Thurston Moore were divorcing – following revelations of his affair with a younger woman. Elsewhere she dishes the dirt on females in rock (“women aren’t allowed to be kick-ass”), Courtney Love and Kurt Cobain (“Courtney told me she thought Kurt Cobain was hot, which made me cringe inside and hope the two would never meet”) and Billy Corgan (“whom nobody liked because he was such a crybaby”) among others. If you lived through grunge, you’ll love this.

    Viv Albertine – Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys

    The title alone made The Slits’ guitarist’s memoir one of the best books to come out last year. But it’s just as good on the inside, detailing her time in the female punk band, who influenced countless female musicians (Bjork has cited their importance on her), her fling with Johnny Rotten and relationship with Mick Jones from the Clash, and her later battle with cancer. Whether you know the band or not, this is still a rip-roaring read.

    Patti Smith – Just Kids

    Patti Smith’s first memoir focuses on her relationship with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, and their lives in New York in the Sixties and Seventies. The musician – who this year celebrates the 40th anniversary of her seminal album Horses – paints a vivid picture of life in the city, living in the legendary Chlesea hotel, but it’s also a touching tale of friendship. The book is currently being turned into a film, and she’s releasing a follow up later this year…we for one can’t wait.

    Marianne Faithfull – Faithfull

    Marianne Faithful has lived a life and a half, and in this tell-all memoir she dishes on life in the swinging sixties when she was dating Mick Jagger, her liaisons with another Rolling Stone, Keith Richards, and being wooed by Bob Dylan. Her story takes a dark turn in the 70s, when her drug addiction led to her living on the streets – before a comeback with the classic album Broken English. Annoyingly, it’s out of print, but often pops up in charity shops…or get down your local library!

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