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Have A Little Faith: The John Hiatt Story
A journey through an artist's quest for success, deep dive into substance abuse, family tragedy, and ultimate triumph
By the mid-1980s, singer-songwriter John Hiatt had been dropped from three record labels, burned through two marriages, and had fallen deep into substance abuse.
It took a stint in rehab and a new marriage to inspire him, then a producer and an A&R man to have a little faith. By February 1987, he was back in the studio on a shoestring budget with a hand-picked supergroup consisting of Ry Cooder on guitar, Nick Lowe on bass, and Jim Keltner on drums, recording what would become his masterpiece, Bring the Family.
Based on author Michael Elliott's multiple extensive and deeply personal interviews with Hiatt as well as his collaborators and contemporaries, including Rosanne Cash, Bonnie Raitt, Ry Cooder, and many others, Have a Little Faith is the journey through the musical landscape of the 1960s through today that places Hiatt’s long career in context with the glossy pop, college-alternative, mainstream country, and heartland rock of the last half-century.
Hiatt’s life both pre- and post-Family will be revealed, as well as the music loved by critics, fellow musicians, and fans alike.
"You already know John Hiatt is one of our best songwriters, but what you might not know is his life is as great a story as his songs—a tale with so many ups and downs from triumph to tragedy and back again, it only makes you love him that much more. He’s had a remarkable career and here, finally, is the book of stories behind the master’s songs. Compellingly rendered by my fellow North Carolinian Michael Elliott, it’s the book you should be reading while listening to Hiatt’s 'Bring the Family.' I thought I knew my John Hiatt, but I learned a lot." —David Menconi, 2019 North Carolina Piedmont Laureate, author of Step It Up and Go: The Story of North Carolina Popular Music, from Blind Boy Fuller and Doc Watson to Nina Simone and Superchunk
"One of the things that any admirer of John Hiatt will appreciate about this book is the lack of self-pity, bitterness or reproach when John reflects on the unwise paths taken and even the occasional gamble with sanity. I certainly recognize how we all made regrettable as well as necessary mistakes. Sometimes the heart or mind broken might even be your own but time brings clarity, strength of will has sustained sobriety and I sense and hope John now knows both love and happiness."—Elvis Costello, from his foreword
"John Hiatt gets the bio he deserves and one that matches his music: concise but in-depth, soulful and full of meaning.Have a Little Faithis a great book."—Alan Paul, author ofTexas Flood: The Inside Story of Stevie Ray VaughanandOne Way Out: The Inside History of the Allman Brothers Band
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Since you put me down, it seems i've been very gloomy. You may laugh but pretty girls look right through me.
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