Hitless Wonder

Hitless Wonder

A Life in Minor League Rock and Roll

Book - 2012
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Everyone knows the price of fame. Hitless Wonder measures the price of obscurity. What happens when you chase a dream into middle age and, in doing so, risk losing the people you love? This book recounts the two-week tour that forces Joe Oestreich--singer, songwriter, and bassist of the band Watershed--to decide if he and his longtime bandmates still have a future together. In the mid-'90s, Watershed's large Midwest following led to a six-figure deal with Epic Records. But the band never had a hit, and the label dropped them. Seventeen years later, long after their more famous peers have called it quits, Watershed keeps climbing into the Econoline and touring mop bucket bars. But Joe can't help but wonder: Are he and his bandmates--approaching forty with wives and kids and mortgages--admirable or pathetic? Successes or failures? The tour tests the bonds of Joe's friendships and the strength of his marriage, as he's torn between the lure of the road and the call to finally settle down. An accomplished journalist and creative writing instructor, Oestreich tells his story with humor, heart, and unflinching honesty. Readers--from Baby Boomers to Gen X-ers--will be deeply moved by his voice, while appreciating his quixotic struggle to live out a dream.
Publisher: Guilford, Connecticut : Lyons Press, 2012.
ISBN: 9780762779246
Branch Call Number: 782.42 O29h
Characteristics: viii, 293 pages ; 21 cm
Call Number: 782.42 O29h


From Library Staff

This is not a Cinderella rock ‘n roll story. No Grammys,
no arenas, no trashed hotel rooms. With honesty and
hilarity, Oestreich explains the allure of the rockstar life
and how not “making it” can be the real happy ending.

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bubbagtr Feb 12, 2014

What a great, great book. Kinda heartbreaking, tremendously funny, superbly well-written. Joe the Demon bass player really got it right here...Great job, wish I would've heard of these guys back in the 90s but if I had then I guess this 5-star book wouldn't exist. In the world of Rn'R biographies this one I think is at the head of the pack even though you've probably never heard of the band "Watershed". As a person who's read many musician biographies both the famous & the less so, this book is definitely, definitely worth checking out...Take care

Aug 23, 2012

Disclosure: I know the author and shared a day job with Joe and, at one time or another, most of the band, fielding calls from Biggie when they couldn't get to work 'cause the van broke down. I saw this tale of rock and roll reality play out, and you probably have, too, in other cities, with other bands, other friends who you supported by attending late, weeknight club shows, buying CDs at the merch table, all the time wondering why such a great band, and nice folks, weren't getting airplay on every radio station in the country. Joe tells this story of music industry Joads without bitterness, invoking the spirit of his literary hero, Studds Terkel. Rock on, Watershed.


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