Girl in a Band


Kim Gordon, founding member of Sonic Youth, fashion icon, and role model for a generation of women, now tells her story—a memoir of life as an artist, of music, marriage, motherhood, independence, and as one of the first women of rock and roll, written with the lyricism and haunting beauty of Patti Smith’s Just Kids.

Often described as aloof, Kim Gordon opens up as never before in Girl in a Band. Telling the story of her family, growing up in California in the ’60s and ’70s, her life in visual art, her move to New York City, the men in her life, her marriage, her relationship with her daughter, her music, and her band, Girl in a Band is a rich and beautifully written memoir.

Kim Gordon takes us back to the lost New York of the 1980 s and ’90 s that gave rise to Sonic Youth, and the Alternative revolution in popular music. The band helped build a vocabulary of music—paving the way for Nirvana, Hole, Smashing Pumpkins and many other acts. But at its core, Girl in a Band examines the route from girl to woman in uncharted territory, music, art career, what partnership means—and what happens when that identity dissolves.

About the author:

Kim (Althea) Gordon (born April 28, 1953) is an American musician, songwriter, and visual artist. Born in Rochester, New York, Kim Gordon was raised in Los Angeles, California, and studied art at the Otis Art Institute. She later rose to prominence as the bassist, guitarist, and vocalist of the New York City-based alternative rock band Sonic Youth, which she formed with ex-husband Thurston Moore in 1981.

Kim Gordon also formed the musical project Free Kitten with Julia Cafritz (of Pussy Galore) in the 1990s, and debuted as a producer on Hole’s debut album Pretty on the Inside (1991). Gordon also worked on a fashion line called X-Girl in 1993, and continued to write and release material with Sonic Youth throughout the 1990s and on into the late 2000s.

Gordon has collaborated with Ikue Mori, DJ Olive, William Winant, Lydia Lunch, Yoko Ono, Raymond Pettibon,Courtney Love, and Chris Corsano. In 2012, after the breakup of Sonic Youth, Gordon formed Body/Headwith friend Bill Nace, releasing their debut album Coming Apart in September 2013. Gordon’s memoir, Girl in a Band, was published in February 2015, by Harper Collins imprint Dey Street Books.

Reviews:

“Kim Gordon writes the way she plays. Fiercely, honestly, and with the creative abandon of a singular artist.” (AMY POEHLER, actor, producer, writer)

“I’ve always admired Kim Gordon. She is cool, smart, and dignified. Girl in a Band is a fascinating and honest memoir full of raw emotion and insight.” (SOFIA COPPOLA, filmmaker)

“The best thing one of your heroes can do is make you feel heroic yourself. Kim Gordon has done just that in her memoir; it is full of beauty and power, inspiration, kindness, boldness and hope.” (CARRIE BROWNSTEIN, writer, actor, musicianCARRIE BROWNSTEIN, writer, actor, musician)

“Written with the same cool passion she brings to her lyrics, Gordon delivers a generous look at life inside the punk whirlwind.” (Kirkus Reviews)

Everybody loves Kim Gordon. So it’s pretty much my bet that everybody will be hanging on the words of anyone who’s read her forthcoming memoir (which is reportedly phenomenal). [Ed. note: It’s even better than you’re probably expecting.] (Flavorwire)

“From beginning to end, the icon chronicles the evolution of music, art, and herself, set in and out of an ever-changing New York.”

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