Dancing With Myself by Billy IdolIn this bold and candid memoir, music legend Billy Idol shares his life story—from his childhood in England to his rise to fame during the height of the punk-pop revolution—revealing intimate details about the sex, drugs, and rock and roll that he is so fabulously famous for—all told in his own utterly indelible voice.
An integral member of the punk rock revolution whose music crossed over into ’80s pop mainstream—and one of MTV’s first stars—Billy Idol remains an iconic music legend. Now, in his long-awaited Dancing With Myself, he delivers a lively, candid account of his journey to fame—including intimate and unapologetic details about his life’s highs and lows—all rendered with the in-your-face attitude and exuberance his fans have embraced. Idol brings to life the key events that shaped his life, his music, and his career, including his early childhood in England, his year at Sussex University, and his time spent hanging out with the Sex Pistols and as a member of punk bands Chelsea and Generation X.
He shares outtakes from his wildly and unexpectedly successful solo career and stories behind his string of popular hits, including “White Wedding,” “Eyes Without a Face,” and “Rebel Yell,” which involved close collaboration with Steve Stevens and ultimately led to the creation of some of the most groundbreaking music videos ever seen.
Featuring sixteen pages of full-color, behind-the-scenes photos, Dancing With Myself is both a tale of survival and a celebration of the heady days when punk was born—a compelling and satisfying insider’s tale from a man who made music history firsthand.
?Book excerpt: Billy Idol's "Dancing With Myself"
Billy Idol has been everywhere in music, from punk to spiky-coiffed pop superstardom. Below is an excerpt from chapter 16 of his forthcoming autobiography, Dancing with Myself , out October 7, along with a special note from the man himself. I came to New York in the spring of , my Country Gentleman guitar in one hand, a suitcase in the other, the trunk with my pink Elvis '50s-style jacket and the sum of my effects on my back—one more explorer doing his damndest to act unafraid in the face of his exceedingly uncertain future. This was no easy leap; I left the comforts of home, family and friends, and the woman I loved, for no more than a West Village tenement room with a kettle and a cup. The heavens blazed my coming to America that first night with shooting stars and a strange halo effect that may well have been the man in the moon laughing at my audacity.
As his former publicist, I knew he was a wreck for most of our year relationship. But he was one of those functioning addicts pushed along for the most part by enablers such as myself. The book outlines a devastating path of heroin addiction, as well as many episodes freebasing crack, including one heavy bottom of paranoid psychotic imagings in his dark, isolated New York apartment during a break in recording Whiplash Smile. The details of that musical adventure from his time as one of the Bromley Contingent that devotedly followed The Sex Pistols to starting his band Generation X and then moving to America to become a solo MTV superstar and multi-platinum hitmaker have been well-documented in the media that went along for the ride. It is only the brutal drug revelations, the specifics about his parents and children, and the admissions of a calmer middle age — especially the poignant period where he mended his relationship with his strict and dying father — that give a glimpse into a side of Idol never seen before in public. Dancing With Myself is worth reading in order to discover both Billy Idol, warts and all, as well as William Broad, the man behind the self-created persona.
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