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Home Before Daylight: My Life on the Road with the "Grateful Dead" Hardcover – 29 Apr 2004

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Piatkus Books; New edition edition (29 April 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0749950137
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749950132
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 16.2 x 3.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 472,642 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Very sad book - nearly half of it detailing, yet again, the long, sad decline of Jerry. Loads of sex and drugs but very little indeed about music. If it keeps people off heroin then it's no bad thing, but a very depressing read. Compare with McNally's tomb, which has some interesting insights into the relationship of the band with the road crew. Frankly, I for one am tired of reading about Jerry and heroin; I would much rather read about the music (as much as that is possible).
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars 75 reviews
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A big-hearted book from a big-hearted, classy guy 17 Sept. 2003
By Andrew Macgowan, III - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Steve Parrish has been a justifiaby much-loved member of the Grateful Dead circle for decades, and this is why his book has been so anticipated. More than most, Parrish has earned the right to speak his peace. He's just a real, plain-spoken big-hearted fella - and it's this approach to writing his book (with Joe Layden) - as to why Parrish's book succeeds. Parrish manages to write with honesty but with compassion. For this reason many readers may prefer this simpler work over McNally's and Skully's books.
No, Steve Parish does not write with the sophistication and finesse of, say, Blair Jackson (still the best writer on the GD scene), it's the emotional directness that separates this book from many of the rest. True, there are a few minor inaccuracies with times and dates (believe me, you've seen worse). But it's the overall emotional quality of Parrish's stories and insights, for me at least, that I found more compelling than some of the other, more polished works that have come out. And don't let the plain-spoken nature of this book fool you: There are numerous observations, anecdotes and insights (I wish there were more), that only Steve Parrish could deliver (the meeting with Garcia and Sinatra is a riot).
So for those of us who loved the Grateful Dead, Jerry Garcia, Phil, Bobby and the rest of the crew, and for whom the emotional quality of the band mattered (and matters) more than anything else, Parrish's effort is one of the better ones there at this time. Recommended.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm Glad He Came Home Before Daylight 13 Sept. 2003
By Marilyn Parish - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I am not and never have been a deadhead but I was very entertained by these road stories. Initially it was very hard for me to read as I am a little too close to the author... but as I continued reading I distanced myself and found I could not put this book down. What an unusual life this guy had - I laughed, I cried, then I kissed the author. Enjoy it, it's quite a ride.
14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining Quick Read but a big letdown overall 9 Oct. 2003
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I think the major problem with this book is that readers will buy the book to learn new insights about Garcia & the Dead. What they will get is few new insights that haven't already been written about but plenty of info on Parish's life as a roadie and his sexcapades. Who really cares about that. We all know that every band and roadie has drank to oblivion, partied harder than most, slept with groupies in multiple combinations. What we want to know is interesting stories about Garcia and the DeAD. While there are some good stories and insights, they are few and far between.
I too have read every book about the band and was looking foward to reading this book for months. I read the entire book in 2 days. There was some new insight into what a great guy Weir is. How Weir hated the Hells Angels. How Mickey was the most difficult memeber of the band. There is also some more sad confirmation of what a Heroin addict Garcia was for most of the last 25 years of his life. From Parish's inside position with Garcia and the band there could have been another 300 pages of good stories. Don't blame Parish for how poorly written this book is though, blame his co-author Joe Layden who wrote the Chuck Zito Hells Angels book. Another piece of quickly written but entertaining trash.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Friend of the Devil... 17 Sept. 2003
By rammer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Great outstanding, finally a book from a real insider. I've been in the dead scene for over thirty years, and like most deadheads can't get enough. I especially liked the stories about the odd happenings on the road that only a true roadie would know. Terrific stories, told in an exciting and humerous way. I read it in one sitting and finished it just before daylight.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A deeper look 23 Sept. 2003
By apc in sf - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found this book to be a deep, insightful look into the world of rock and roll from a very different and very personal perspective. This is not, nor does it purport to be another "Grateful Dead history".
Steve was uniquely situated to both participate in and observe the Grateful Dead as a band and as an institution. His perspective allows us to catch glimpses of the real action behind the scene that was often the basis for the magic (or sometimes lack of it)in the on-stage performances.
Of far greater impact to me, however, was Steve's willingness to share his personal travails, passions, successes and failures over the past 30 years. He reveals one very involved, very sensitive and very insightful man's interaction with the power and impact of rock and roll on people in and around the scene, both the famous and sometimes the infamous. In telling his own story, Steve often challenges conventional and traditional assumptions about who are really "good guys" and who are "bad".
He shows us the humanity that drove the unfortunately unrealistic desire of Jerry and others to make it only "all about the music". Through his unparallelled access Steve is able to the efforts of those in and around the Band to enjoy normal lives and meaningful interpersonal relationships while fending off, or all too often sucumbing to the dangers of hard drugs, greed and the many other down-sides of "fame" in 20th Century America.
He accomplishes all of this with humility and well-placed humor. I have read many rock and roll biographies of both individuals and bands, and I strongly recommend Steve's book as offfering a truly "one of a kind" perspective.
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