As 2016 marks the 20th anniversary of Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk, Grove Press has issued a special edition of the book complete with new photos, chapters and an afterword by authors Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain. When Please Kill Me came out in 1996 it was revolutionary, not just because it unabashedly chronicled America’s punk movement through first-hand accounts, but because it helped to popularize the oral history style.
In celebration of the anniversary, Ace Hotel – who cites punk amongst its influences – is hosting a series of events across six properties, which will combine readings by the authors along with a DJ sets and after parties. Last night’s unforgettable event in New York City was hosted by Michael Des Barres, who describes the experience here in his own words:
“The celebration of the 20th year anniversary of PKM in New York was both thrilling and poignant. The particular circumstances of reading from the book in the city where punk rock was born was riveting, both for the authors Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain as well as the audience. For me personally, witnessing this was incredibly moving. One of the highlights of my life in music was seeing my friends receive accolades and gratitude from an audience raised on rock where the insights and revelations of the most successful oral history of punk rock were firmly established. The intimacy of listening to the audio interviews of Lou, Patti, Bowie, Iggy and Joey was truly overwhelming. A great night was had by all. It was a night to be remembered and cherished.”
The Please Kill Me 20th Anniversary Book Tour continues on, with Legs and Gillian’s next stop on July 18 at the Ace Hotel in Pittsburgh. For more information, visit pleasekillme.com.