Growing Up Dead by Peter Conners
The Hallucinated Confessions of a Teenage Deadhead

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Told against the backdrop of the American landscape of the late '80s to the mid-'90s, Growing Up Dead is the story of Peter Conners's journey from straight-laced suburban kid to touring Deadhead. Peter discovered the Grateful Dead in 1985, at the age of 15, through friends who exchanged bootleg tapes of live Grateful Dead concerts. A teenager living in the suburbs of Rochester, New York, he became exposed to an entirely new way of life, and friends who were enjoying more freedom and less parental guidance. At the age of 16, he attended his first Grateful Dead concert on June 30, 1987 - he was hooked. Between 1987 and 1995, Conners would attend Dead 'shows' all over the United States. He traveled with a makeshift 'family' of other Deadheads in a Volkswagen camper, selling drugs and whatever else would provide gas money to the next concert. His hair was a wild, unkempt bush and baths were infrequent. In short, he had progressed from suburban kid, to Grateful Dead fan, to full-blown Deadhead. Chronicling this progression, which culminates with the 1995 death of Jerry Garcia, Conners reveals the truth behind Deadhead culture and history. The result is a riveting insight into the obsessive fandom that made The Grateful Dead the most successful touring band of all time, as well as a cultural phenomenon.

About Peter Conners

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Peter Conners was born September 11, 1970 in a small town called America. His published books include the prose poetry collection Of Whiskey and Winter and the novella Emily Ate the Wind. His memoir, Growing Up Dead: The Hallucinated Confessions of a Teenage Deadhead, will be published by Da Capo Press in March 2009. His next poetry collection, The Crows Were Laughing in their Trees, will be published by White Pine Press in 2010. He is also editor of PP/FF: An Anthology which was published by Starcherone Books in April 2006. His writing appears regularly in such journals as Poetry International, Mississippi Review, Brooklyn Rail, Fiction International, Salt Hill, Hotel Amerika, Mid-American Review, The Bitter Oleander, and Beloit Fiction Journal.
Published March 31, 2009 by Da Capo Press. 290 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment, Arts & Photography. Non-fiction

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One scene shows Conners tripping on acid and getting his thrills by laughing in people's faces;

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But while there have been plenty of Dead books aimed at the faithful, novelist and prose poet Peter Conners directs Growing Up Dead: The Hallucinated Confessions Of A Teenage Deadhead—his examination of and adamant non-apology for his former lifestyle—at general readers.

Apr 16 2009 | Read Full Review of Growing Up Dead: The Hallucin...

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