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Nick Tosches

Nick Tosches

Nick Tosches is the author of the novels Cut Numbers, Trinities, and, most recently and notably, In the Hand of Dante, as well as of nonfiction works such as Hellfire, Dino, The Devil and Sonny Liston, Where Dead Voices Gather, The Last Opium Den, and King of the Jews. Thirty years of his writing is represented by The Nick Tosches Reader. His poetry has been widely published; his collection of poetry Chaldea is a bestseller in Hell, and his latest volume of poetry, Never Trust a Loving God, has been all but banned there. He lives in New York and is a contributing editor of Vanity Fair magazine.

He is presently at work on: a secret new book and a screenplay for a movie to be directed by and starring John Turturro. His new CD, I’m in Love with Your Knees, was released earlier this year. His first children’s book, Johnny’s First Cigarette, will be published next year, in France. A graphic novel of his tale Spud Crazy is in production, and Johnny Depp is at work on the movie version of his novel In the Hand of Dante.

Pork, women’s legs, and bundles of money tied up with string–these are a few of his favorite things.

Buy Nick Tosches' books

List of articles in the library by artist

The Band, Seatrain: The Band at Central Park

Live Review by Nick Tosches, New Haven Rock Press, Fall 1970

ON THE night of June 29, The Band played to the biggest crowd in the four-year history of the now-traditional Central Park Summer Beer Festival ...

Lester Bangs: Jook Savages

Memoir by Nick Tosches, The Nick Tosches Reader, 1995

LESTER BANGS, with whom I had drunk but whose writing I had never read, had died not long after Hellfire came out, in the spring ...

Blondie Plucks Her Legs

Interview by Nick Tosches, Creem, June 1979

DEBORAH HARRY, formerly of Hawthorne, New Jersey, sits there. Deborah Harry, who arrived at the Seventies from the Sixties in a Camaro, eats tuna salad ...

Paul Butterfield Blues Band: Sometimes I Just Feel Like Smilin'

Review by Nick Tosches, Fusion, October 1971

ALL OF Butterfield's albums are beauts that never obsolesce. The complete Catholicism of his/their approach to musical communication has already resulted in more than your ...

Captain Beefheart

Discography by Nick Tosches, Fusion, March 1971

"The Chatanooga Choo-Choo careens headlong into the hub of an exploding galaxy. The cadavers of 19 raped and strangled astronauts float de-pants'd, froggish in the ...

Carlene Carter: Miss Carter Speaks

Interview by Nick Tosches, Waxpaper, June 1978

N.T.: What's Johnny Cash really like? ...

Miles Davis: The Hat Makes the Man

Book Excerpt by Nick Tosches, The Nick Tosches Reader, 2000

THE WORD ITSELF is deadening: art, a devalued dollar of a word, no longer backed by meaning, as drained of worth as the politician's viability, ...

The Doors: James Douglas Morrison, 1943-1971

Essay by Nick Tosches, Foreword to David Dalton's 'Mr. Mojo Risin'', 1991

JERSEY CITY, June 1968. 'Hello, I Love You'. I remember not only where I was but also whom I was with when it came through ...

The Doors: An American Prayer

Review by Nick Tosches, Rolling Stone, January 1979

WHAT JIM MORRISON wanted more than anything – more than fame, more than wealth, more than the women's wet submission that fame brought with it ...

Ed Sanders, The Fugs: Ed Sanders: We Reach The Moon

Interview by Nick Tosches, Fusion, October 1969

This interview between Ed Sanders and Nick Tosches took place on Labor Day evening, 1969 at Ed Sanders' Lower East Side apartment in New York ...

Hank Ballard and the Midnighters: Hank Ballard & The Midnighters: From The Sins Of Annie To The Twist

Retrospective by Nick Tosches, Creem, March 1983

IT WAS TOWARDS the end of 1951 that Johnny Otis (born John Veliotes; he found it gainful to pass as black), the 30-year-old Savoy recording ...

Screamin' Jay Hawkins

Interview by Nick Tosches, Creem, August 1973

Valerie's torrid flesh sings with the lyrics of passion and singes with the heat of burning desire ...

The Holy Modal Rounders: Good Taste Is Timeless

Review by Nick Tosches, Rolling Stone, June 1971

PETER STAMPFEL, who, with Steve Weber, was, and remains, half of the driving force behind the Rounders, later paid off a debt he owed me ...

Waylon Jennings: Maybe They Don't Even Know I'm There

Interview by Nick Tosches, Zoo World, August 1974

LOOKING MORE like an Exxon station grease monkey on his lunch break than the Pontifex Maximus of Nashville's Telecaster outlaws, Waylon Jennings sits there washing ...

Jerry Lee Lewis: How The Devil's Music Possessed Jerry Lee Lewis

Retrospective by Nick Tosches, History of Rock, The, 1981

THERE HAVE been only two figures of mythic dimension in the history of rock'n'roll. First and foremost was Elvis Presley, the guileless star-god who rendered ...

Jerry Lee Lewis: Killer: The Mercury Years

Review by Nick Tosches, Spin, March 1990

I'M SITTING there in Dennis Quaid's house, this white thing on La Sombra, last spring, a few months before that stiff Great Balls of Fire ...

Jerry Lee Lewis: The Gospel According to Jerry Lee

Interview by Nick Tosches, Country Music, October 1979

DRESSED LIKE A side-street gambler from the days when chrome was chrome, Jerry Lee Lewis sits in the dressing-room of the Palomino Club, holding loosely ...

Jerry Lee Lewis: Hellfire

Special Feature by Nick Tosches, Penthouse, March 1982

IT WAS 3 O'CLOCK in the morning and the master bedroom of Graceland was still. Elvis Presley lay in his blue cotton pajamas dreaming. ...

Louis Jordan: Hep And The Art Of Alto-Sax Repair

Retrospective by Nick Tosches, Creem, October 1979

IN THE 1940's, there were two black singers who crossed over from Race Records (as Billboard called its bluegum charts until 1949, when the phrase Rhythm & ...

Charles Manson, Ed Sanders: Charles Manson: Stalking Manson – The Sanders Saga

Essay by Nick Tosches, Fusion, December 1971

Ed Sanders spent the summer of the Tate-LaBianca murders yodeling the ditties that were to come to comprise Sanders Truckstop into an overhead mike at ...

Dean Martin: Once In A While

Review by Nick Tosches, Waxpaper, October 1978

God created Dean Martin in his own image, then stood back ...

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: The Wit And Wisdom Of The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

Interview by Nick Tosches, Creem, January 1975

JUST WHAT THE hell is "good time music" supposed to mean? Is it John Sebastian lilting those fruity dry-hump ditties like 'You Didn't Have To ...

Elvis Presley, Hank Williams: Death in Hi-Fi or First Tastes of Tombstone

Overview by Nick Tosches, Waxpaper, March 1978

Music deaths are big news nowadays. It seems hardly an ish of Rolling Stone goes by when we aren't treated to a eulogy for a ...

Lou Reed: Transformer (RCA)

Review by Nick Tosches, Rolling Stone, January 1973

A REAL COCKTEASER, this album. That great cover: Lou and those burned-out eyes staring out in grim black and white beneath a haze of gold ...

The Rolling Stones: Tattoo You (Rolling Stones Records)

Review by Nick Tosches, Creem, November 1981

LIKE THE countless cruel-belching flotskies who sit in the countless unferned and uncedared bars of this one-horse universe grimacing into mirrors, not so much at ...

The Rolling Stones: The Sea's Endless, Awful Rhythm & Me Without Even a Dirty Picture

Book Excerpt by Nick Tosches, Stranded, Ed. Greil Marcus, December 1979

CALL ME Gilligan. As I confront in earnest the problems of divine retribution, way-out sex, and the value of the Folk Mass, so I confront ...

Carly Simon: Free, White, & Pushing 40

Interview by Nick Tosches, Creem, January 1984

"Maybe It Was My Big Mouth" ...

Patti Smith Group: Easter

Review by Nick Tosches, Creem, June 1978

CHARLES OLSON was invited to give a reading at Berkeley in 1965. It was a time – a springtime – when rose incense bore a ...

Patti Smith: A Baby Wolf With Neon Bones

Interview by Nick Tosches, Penthouse, April 1976

PATRICIA LEE SMITH hit the linen on December 30, 1946, in Chicago, and was raised, the eldest of four children, in Deptford Township, New Jersey. ...

Patti Smith: Straight, No Chaser

Interview by Nick Tosches, Creem, September 1978

WE ARE SITTING in the Tropical, the darkest bar in New York. Outside on Eighth Avenue it's late afternoon. In here it's midnight on the ...

Patti Smith: 'Hey Joe' b/w 'Piss Factory' (Mer601)

Review by Nick Tosches, Creem, November 1974

REMEMBER WHEN rock 'n' roll as poetry was a hot issue? All those wheezing old-before-their-timers trying to legitimize that fine honky noise by jamming its ...

Spirit: 12 Dreams of Dr. Sardonicus

Review by Nick Tosches, Rolling Stone, March 1971

ANY ILLUSIONS that might still be clung to along the order of Spirit's being an Epic house organ anthropomorphization-of-eclecticism shuck, complete with baldpated, cerebral – ...

Spirit in Flesh: God Crazed Hippies Reap Boffo B.O.

Report by Nick Tosches, Creem, November 1971


Dionne Warwick: "...The Holy Ghost, Of Course."

Overview by Nick Tosches, Fusion, January 1972

ONCE THERE was a little pickaninny girl from East Orange, N.J. She used to play organ and sing in the choir at the church of ...

Muddy Waters Rarely Eats Fish

Interview by Nick Tosches, Oui, January 1973

THREE OF Oui's finest encountered Muddy Waters in his hotel room one recent afternoon, and an interview took place. Here it is: ...

Waylon Jennings: The Taker/Tulsa (RCA 4487)

Review by Nick Tosches, Fusion, May 1971

EVEN THOUGH this album stinks it wasn't always like that for Mr. Jennings. ...

List of genre pieces

Country Music: There's Glitter in Them Thar Hills

Comment by Nick Tosches, Zoo World, January 1974

THE CONCERT hall darkens. The band's rhinestone-studded, sequined. custom-tailored Harvey Krantz suits glimmer in the dim like so many jars of snared fireflies. Morphemes of ...

Hail, Hail Rock'n'Roll

Essay by Nick Tosches, Spin, August 1990

NOW THAT the 1980s, whatever the fuck they were, are, like the great Liberace himself, dead and gone, can't we get this whole dumb business ...

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