This section contains selected reviews of books which feature and/or reference Gram Parsons
I’m With The Band – Confessions Of A Groupie
By Pamela Des Barres
Beech Tree Books – William Morrow – New York
Pamela Des Barres, the worlds most famous groupie and founding member of the Zappa-esque all girl group The G.T.O’s, reveals her whirlwind lifestyle along side some of the most influential celebrities, musicians and generally interesting members of the late 60’s and early 70’s southern California scene. Can one young woman really rub elbows (and other body parts) with the likes of Frank Zappa, Jimmy Page, Mick Jagger, Chris Hillman, Gram Parsons, Waylon Jennings, Keith Moon, Don Johnson, Michael Des Barres and others and still live to tell about it? Not only has Pamela Des Barres done just that, she has documented it all in this book including excerpts from her own personal diaries and the playful personality of her impeccable memory. Following “Miss Pamela” on her quest to convince Chris Hillman that she and he were meant for each other, leads the reader past Gram Parsons in a most candid and uncensored way. Contrary to the “matter of fact” style often applied by Parsons historians such as Ben Fong-Torres and Sid Griffin, Pamela’s touching insight and her genuine motherly concern for the reckless GP offers a strikingly warm portrait of Gram. While baby-sitting Gram’s daughter Polly Parsons, Miss Pamela’s diary entries display a sad silent plea for the safety of the often unrestrained GP and a sympathy for his daughter’s worried mother Nancy, as she questions the security of her relationship with Gram. The friendship of the outrageously eccentric GP and the obviously awed Miss Pamela hints of an ironic angst that the glitzy Gram will most probably burn out before he fades away. Pamela’s descriptions of Gram, along with most of the other more famous members in her clique, paint an interesting portrait of each as they evolve from the often cartoon first impression, to the most personal depths of their intimacy.
Road Mangler Deluxe
By Phil Kaufman With Colin White
White Boucke Publishing
If ever there were a superhero of rock and roll, Phil Kaufman would be his name. This Executive Nanny of the stars proves that his superstar name dropping abilities could even give Pamela Des Barres a run for her money. Being the Road Manager (A.K.A. Road Mangler) for The Rolling Stones, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Gram Parsons, Emmylou Harris, Frank Zappa, Joe Cocker, Carlene Carter, Rosanne Cash, Rodney Crowell, Etta James, Jonathan Richmond, Vince Gill, Albert Lee, Marianne Faithful, The Divynals, Marty Stuart, Nash Ramblers and others piles up one enormous helping of his desperately clever road dog sarcasm. Phil’s tongue sharp from fast talking and his wit even sharper prove that with enough tongue wagging and a bushy enough mustache, one can hide even the largest shinola eating grin. With detailed recounts of the life, death and post mortem theft of Gram Parsons as recalled by those who were there shed some light on the same dark stories that all Gram fans are familiar and finally lay to rest the mystery of Gram’s last days. This book contains more Gram Parsons info and more genuine believe-it-or-not humor than anyone expected to find in this decade.
Phil Kaufman, the one and only Road Mangler Deluxe tells any and all disbelievers to “PH KAUF” in his book now considered a must read for any GP collector. From this day forward you will now mention Phil Kaufman whenever you mention Ben Fong-Torres and Sid Griffin.