Jim Burns, best known on this blog as the singer for Not Saved, South Oaks, Sugarbush and Barking Spiders, has also added author to his skills. In early 2016 he released his book, Let's Go to Hell: Scattered Memories of the Butthole Surfers. As far as I can remember, Jim has been an avid fan of the Butthole Surfers. So much so that he just had to write a book about them.
Here’s the publicity spiel about the book…
Author James Burns explores the strange and enigmatic world of the Butthole Surfers in a new book entitled, Let’s Go to Hell: Scattered Memories of the Butthole Surfers, as the band destroyed musical genres, and brain cells through the 1980s and 90s.
Set against the backdrop of the Reagan-era White House, and the greed and hypocrisy of the ‘Me Generation’, the Butthole Surfers were able to become a political force unto themselves; merely by living far outside the realm of mainstream society.
As one of the few bands to emerge out of the US Hardcore movement of the early 1980s relatively intact, the Butthole Surfers were able to hone their heavy, psychedelic punk music into what would become a precursor to the grunge and alternative movement of the 1990s. Cited as a musical influence by everyone from Kurt Cobain and Beck, to Alejandro Escovedo and Daniel Johnston; and a true case study on how a rock band can overcome any obstacles through sheer strength of will and fortitude.
Let’s Go to Hell drags the reader along for the long and harrowing journey to self-determination and to an unlikely Top 40 hit, where one is forced to evaluate the true meaning of success; artistic freedom, or the financial rewards of mass market acceptance?
Finally, the complete story of the Butthole Surfers is in print! Featuring exclusive interviews with band members, both past and present, as well as those left indelibly scarred, Let's Go to Hell is the story that was thought, and often hoped, would never be told.
“I can't imagine putting this altogether. ..Trying to put together a book long narrative of a band that did most of their work before the Internet existed, where you can't just Google it all....This is old school journalism... I'm really impressed” – King Coffey, Butthole Surfers drummer (December 2015)
“Captures the Butthole Surfers' story in all its megaphone shouting/LSD-addled/topless dancer glory. Twisted and great.” – Big Takeover (May 2016)
“Given the amount of research that went into 'Let's Go to Hell', there is no need for anyone to ever attempt another tome on the band.” – Innocent Words (May 2016)
Here’s bunch of websites that reviewed the book…
Noisey - Vice | The Wire Magazine | The Arts Desk | Dangerous Minds | Sawney Hatton | Song Facts | Night Flight | Innocent Words | Hell Bound | Razor Cake | Record Collector Magazine
You can purchase your very own copy of Let's Go to Hell: Scattered Memories of the Butthole Surfers from Jim’s blog, Butthole Surfers Anal Obsession, or at Amazon.
And while you’re at it, you should “Like” the Facebook page, too.
R.I.P. Jack Rice