NEVER THE SAME AGAIN details the often tragic, always extraordinary life of Jesse Sublett—punk musician, novelist, survivor. After an out-of-town gig in the summer of 1976, the 20-year-old singer-songwriter returned to his Austin, Texas, bungalow to discover his girlfriend’s gruesomely murdered body. The police focused on Jesse as the prime suspect—but he wound up solving the case for them. Recovering from the devastating loss of his girlfriend, he immersed himself in creative endeavors, founding the legendary punk band the Skunks, and later moving to Los Angeles to write screenplays and crime novels. After contracting a rare form of throat cancer, Jesse moved back to Austin to begin the hardest fight of his life. Here, Jesse candidly narrates his novel-worthy true story, a testament to art’s power to heal the deepest wounds. The autobiography of famed punk band member and crime novelist Jesse Sublett, covering his first love’s tragic murder, his music career, and his struggle with cancer.
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On a hot August night in Texas, 22-year-old Jesse Sublett was onstage experiencing what he thought was the realization of a long-held dream: his first big gig with a rock band. When he returned home, however, he found a nightmare: his longtime girlfriend Dianne Roberts, had been savagely murdered in their bed.
Jesse became the police's prime suspect, and while in custody, solved the crime. Though he couldn't undo the damage, he moved on. But death had entered Jesse's home, and he had let it in. It wasn't going away.
Jesse and pals Fazz Eddie Munoz, Jon Dee Graham, and Billy Blackmon created the Skunks--a new wave rock 'n' roll band that was instrumental in establishing Austin, Texas, as the live music capital of the world. In his star-studded memoir we find cameo appearances by Patti Smith, Debbie Harry, Elvis Costello, Carla Olson, Mick Taylor, Kathy Valentine, and more.
In the late 1990s Jesse was diagnosed with stage IV throat cancer, with a less than 9% chance of survival. He came to understand that the cancer was somehow connected with his past--with the hardscrabble life he endured growing up in the Texas Hill Country; with his girlfriend's murder, and the reality he never faced; and with the self-absorption of his years on tour with the band.
Never the Same Again is a road trip through a landscape of rock 'n' roll dreams, murder, and malignancy--a true story, mostly, about a tall Texan with "good-fallin' hair" facing long odds and running out of time.About the Author:
JESSE SUBLETT is former singer, songwriter, and musician of the Violators and the Skunks, among other bands. Jesse's crime novel trilogy, known as the Martin Fender mysteries, includes Rock Critic Murders, Tough Baby, and Boiled in Concrete. He has written articles for Texas Monthly Magazine and the New York Times Magazine, and documentaries for the History Channel. He lives in Austin, Texas.
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