Never the Same Again: a rock'n'roll gothic by Jesse Sublett
Generally speaking I stopped reading true crime books in my mid 20s., for what ever reason reading fiction about people hurting, traumatizing, and damaging each other has little or no impact on my psyche, but when it's about something that really happened I start to get queasy. That said I think it was the Rock'nRoll more than the true crime part of Jessie Sublett's (I wonder if he's related to Ned Sublette?) book Never the Same Again that drew me in. This is a biography as much as a true crime story, it's as much about how a crime, in this case the rape and murder of a beloved girlfriend, shaped, haunted and drove Jesse as he lived on with the guilty knowledge that he had introduced his girlfriend to the man who would end her life.
Jesse went on to play in The Skunks who were part of the late 70s punk scene in Texas, before heading to California. Many adventures followed including Rock and Roll,Love, and Kids. Like fellow Punk Rocker Johnny Strike, Sublett found himself writing crime novels before too long and working as a writer for TV to pay the bills. But then came the cancer, and facing up to his own mortality. It seems like this brought back all of the guilt and questions about the murder.
I think what I really liked about the book, was it showed how events that aren't supposed to happen bump you off the path of normal live, push you to out of sync and allow you to stand off the path watching everyone else follow it. I understand that, I know that feeling and it's good to know that I am not alone on the alternative path.
I haven't managed to track down any of the crime fiction from Sublette, but I would like to check them out. Anyone read any of his stuff?
Disclosure time: I am not sure that I did this one justice. feedback and comments would be great, and let me know if anyone has any question.