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Elliott Smith by Autumn De Wilde

Posted by Miss Ess, January 24, 2008 02:14pm | Post a Comment

elliott smith autumn de wilde book photosOf course for Christmas I received the new Elliott Smith book by photographer Autumn DeWilde.  All I knew about this book previous to reading it was that it was a photo book of Elliott by Autumn, who photographed him for his Figure 8 cover and made the "Son of Sam" video. I knew it was gonna come with a CD of a Largo show.  But I really didn't have any expectations-- and now that I have read the book I'm so glad I didn't because turning each page brought a surprise.

Autumn included not only gorgeous photographs and theelliott smith figure 8 cover live CD, but also interviews with Elliott's friends.  His old friends.  The ones who truly knew him and cared for him.  Toward the end of his life, many of these friends either were left behind or had falling outs with Elliott.  As a fan, when I heard about this at the time I was wondering what the heck was going on, thinking things must have gotten really bad.  This book answers many questions.  It's not exploitative though, it's merely friends talking about a complicated person they love, in good times and in bad.

elliott smth autumn dewilde
There are many fantastic stories of Elliott in this book, many that even his biggest fans have not heard before.  The interviews were fascinating for me.  With each turn of a page, there was someone else I'd been waiting to hear from since his death.  The interviews cleared up some mysteries for me, like why he and Jon Brion had stopped talking in the years before his death, and what long time manager Margaret Mittleman was going through in dealing with a highly talented but also highly addicted client.

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