I finally read Patti Smith's Just Kids last week after lugging it around with me from New York to Boston, and finally San Francisco, for a good many months. (But I am often like this, as I navigate a long list of reading material.) It was a great read, both entertaining and touching. Smith beautifully paints her world, a fascinating time filled with fascinating people.
via two kitties
In the midst of scurrying in and out of long rehearsals, I found welcome inspiration in Just Kids. A career in music grows more and more tangible for me every year, and I enjoy the work that goes in to preparing performance - practicing, research, rehearsals - increasingly. So I loved reading about Smith and Robert Mapplethorpe's dedication to art, even more so because they did not necessarily have a clear view of how their careers would take shape. Both tried their hands in numerous media: Smith's transition into music through visual art, poetry, theater, etc... seems both random and fated to readers who know and love her albums. Their vision was broad, but simultaneously certain. This is often how the most fulfilling and fruitful careers evolve: focus and determination coupled with openness and happenstance.
And how the book made me homesick for New York!