Soul Survivor by Jimmy McDonough
A Biography of Al Green

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I want to hear Al Green,” Mitchell once said to his developing singer, who replied, “I don’t know who Al Green is.” The soul singer remains an enigma that not even this incisive biography can unravel.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

The bestselling author of Shakey: Neil Young's Biography presents the first in-depth biography of the legendary soul singer Al Green.

Al Green has blessed listeners with some of the biggest hits of the past fifty years. "Love and Happiness," "I'm Still in Love with You," "Let's Get Married," and "I'm Tired of Being Alone" are but a sampling of the iconic songs that led a generation to embrace love in perhaps the most tumultuous period in this country's history, an unparalleled body of work that has many calling Green one of the greatest soul singers of all time. The music legend has sold over 20 million albums and been sampled by numerous rappers, and even President Obama has been known to sing a chorus or two. The now-Bishop Green is without a doubt one of the most beloved yet inscrutable figures ever to grace the popular music stage, and he has managed to magically sidestep being successfully scrutinized in print. Until now.

Acclaimed journalist and author Jimmy McDonough expertly tackles this most elusive of subjects and aims to present readers with the definitive portrait of a man everyone knows but few understand. McDonough manages to break through Green's joyous veneer to reveal the contrary, tortured, and solitary individual beneath, a man who spent decades dancing an uneasy tightrope between the sacred and the profane. From his childhood in the backwaters of Arkansas to commanding the stage in front of throngs of lusting fans to addressing a very different audience from the pulpit of his own church, readers will bear witness to the creation of some of the most electrifying soul music ever recorded; learn the hitherto untold real story behind Green's colorful down-home Memphis label, Hi Records; and--by way of countless in-depth interviews with major players in the story, some speaking for the very first time--unravel one of the last great mysteries in popular music: Al Green.
 

About Jimmy McDonough

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Jimmy McDonough is a journalist who has contributed to such publications as Variety, Film Comment, Mojo, Spin, and Juggs. But he is perhaps best known for his intense, definitive Village Voice profiles of such artists as Jimmy Scott, Neil Young, and Hubert Selby, Jr. Jimmy is also the author of The Ghastly One: The Sex-Gore Netherworld of Filmmaker Andy Milligan. He lives in the Pacific Northwest.
 
Published August 29, 2017 by Da Capo Press. 432 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Arts & Photography. Non-fiction
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Kirkus

Above average
on Jun 27 2017

I want to hear Al Green,” Mitchell once said to his developing singer, who replied, “I don’t know who Al Green is.” The soul singer remains an enigma that not even this incisive biography can unravel.

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