Lou Reed meets Dashiell Hammett?
Tom Waits meets Elmore Leonard?
When we first make his acquaintance in The Rock Critic Murders (1989), MARTIN FENDER (now is that a rock'n'roll name or what?) is an Austin, Texas bass player who works part-time for a collection agency, and who seems to stumble into more than his fair share of murders, most of which are somehow connected to the music industry. By the third book, Boiled in Concrete (1992), he has relocated to Los Angeles.
Author Sublett is a a musician, songwriter and crime novelist born in Austin who has bounced back and forth between Austin and Los Angeles himself. He's also written about hard-as-nails LA gumshoe Clapton.
Hmmm... Clapton... Fender... do I spot a trend here?
But that only scratches the rock'n'roll surface. Sublett's own life sounds like one of his novels. Upon his return to Austin from an out-of-town gig in the summer of 1976, the then-20-year-old singer-songwriter discovered his girlfriend's murdered body, and was eventually the cops' prime suspect -- until he cleared his name by -- get this -- solving the case for them. He went on to co-found the legendary Austin punk band The Skunk, moved to Los Angeles to write screenplays and crime novels, and fought off a rare form of throat cancer. The whole sordid and often moving tale of his life was revealed in his 2004 autobiography, Never the Same Again.
Report respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.
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