To address some frequently asked questions about my book, here are some answers:
Who are you?
I'm a twenty-something Dallas resident (DOB 2/13/79) that reports traffic for a living. Since I work a "split shift" (meaning a few hours in the morning and a few hours in the afternoon), I have the entire midday to do whatever I want. So, I write/revise/research during that time. Also, I write record reviews for Punk Planet.
What's this about shingles hitting your head?
It's true, a pile of shingles were dropped onto my head on March 1st, 2004. Here's the story: I was en route to drop off my monthly rent check before I went off to my weekday afternoon gig. As I walked down the steps of my apartment building, I saw piles of torn shingles all over the sidewalk. Roofers were throwing these shingles off at a rapid rate, so I approached with some caution. Right as I thought I was in the clear, a small pile smacks me on the head. I was not in major pain; just a little stinging and some bleeding.
I don't know about you, but whenever I'm sick or have a cut on my body, I keep thinking about when I'll be "well" again. As a fan of post-hardcore/emo for many years, I was always annoyed by people that thought it was stupid whiny music for skinny white teenage losers. Well, instead of wondering when someone else was going to write a book on the genre, I figured I should write one.
Isn't there another book on emo out there?
Yes: Andy Greenwald's Nothing Feels Good: Punk Rock, Teenagers and Emo. His book is a collection of essays on how he perceives emo and how the music impacts a younger audience/culture. My book is more of history/anthology of the genre with a focus on DIY, work ethic and what happens when a genre is filtered through the mainstream. I'm not defining emo here: this is a look at the 1980s DIY underground's influence on bands in the 1990s. There is a lot more ground to cover in this genre and I'm just putting my slant on things.
Why aren't you spotlighting (insert band name)?
There are tons of bands in any genre that have made some of sort of overall impact. Well, I can't talk about every single one in one book. This is an anthology; not an encyclopedia. My focus is on a select number of bands and labels that I feel have made the biggest impact on the genre's past, present and future.
The audience should care about the people profiled in the book, so I felt the best way to do this was to break up the chapters by band/label, ala Our Band Could Be Your Life.