13 March 2007

Patti Smith -- "somebody's sins but not mine"

I love Patti Smith. I love her persona, her music, her lyrics, her poetry, her politics, her sturdiness, and her honesty. When I went to her book signing a few years ago, she talked and sang and ate pizza.It was the homiest, most gemultlich book signing I've ever attended.

Robert Mapplethorpe captured her stark, strange beauty early on, but it's taken years for the rock world to catch up to his vision. Some of her lyrics - ecstatic, direct, uncompromising - may be less prettified than many would like. Others - well, others are just beautiful:

Patti  Smith"Ours is just another skin
That simply slips away
You can rise above it
It will shed easily

It all will come out fine
I've learned it line by line

One common wire
One silver thread
All that you desire
Rolls on ahead"

("Grateful," from the album Gung Ho.)

Visit her website, read some of her occasional writings , read Rimbaud and Baudelaire and her own recent book of poetry (Auguries of Innocence), listen to her recordings. She's a treasure, and now she's in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!

(The title of this entry is from the first line of her first album: "Jesus died for somebody's sins - but not mine.")


Alice B said...

Yeah Patti!

Thanks for Stephanie's address

KSD said...

The longer I know you, the more I find we have in common. . .

Paula said...

I haven't heard this artist before and now after your mini review I want to search her stuff out at the library tomorrow.