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“People tell me it’s country music,” Terry Allen has joked, “and I ask, ‘Which country?’” For nearly sixty years, Allen’s inimitable art has explored the borderlands of memory, crossing boundaries between disciplines and audiences by conjuring indelible stories out of the howling West Texas wind.
In Truckload of Art, author Brendan Greaves exhaustively traces the influences that shaped Allen’s extraordinary life, from his childhood in Lubbock, Texas, spent ringside and side stage at the wrestling matches and concerts his father promoted, to his formative art-school years in incendiary 1960s Los Angeles, and through subsequent decades doggedly pursuing his uncompromising artistic vision. With humor and critical acumen, Greaves deftly recounts how Allen built a career and cult following with pioneering independent records like Lubbock (on everything) (1979)—widely considered an archetype of alternative country—and multiyear, multimedia bodies of richly narrative, interconnected art and theatrical works, including JUAREZ (ongoing since 1968), hailed as among the most significant statements in the history of American vernacular music and conceptual art.
Drawing on hundreds of revealing interviews with Allen himself, his family members, and his many notable friends, colleagues, and collaborators—from musicians like David Byrne and Kurt Vile to artists such as Bruce Nauman and Kiki Smith—and informed by unprecedented access to the artist’s home, studio, journals, and archives, Greaves offers a poetic, deeply personal portrait of arguably the most singularly multivalent storyteller of the American West.
- On Sale
- Mar 19, 2024
- Page Count
- 576 pages
- Hachette Books