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My name is Michael Azerrad. I grew up in New York State. When I was seven, entranced by the three tom-tom thumps that announce the chorus of "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds," I started playing drums in rock bands. My first rock concert was Three Dog Night — my grandfather took me. I got into punk rock on May 8, 1977, the day I got both Television's Marquee Moon and Talking Heads '77; that summer, a friend came back from a vacation in England with a big pile of singles by bands like the Clash, the Sex Pistols and the Damned. My life was never the same.

Then I went to college in New York City, where I got a degree in Latin, a language which has served me in good stead in my professional life in many ways.

After goofing off for a few years I eventually blundered into rock journalism, and wound up writing a couple hundred articles for Rolling Stone while writing for MTV News and a bunch of other magazines. A professional highlight was interviewing Ray Charles on the phone and making him laugh.

Then I wrote Come As You Are: The Story of Nirvana (Doubleday/Main Street, 1993). After a satisfying foray into the dot-com side of things, I started writing Our Band Could Be Your Life: Scenes from the American Indie Underground 1981-1991 (Little, Brown, 2001). Then I was editor-in-chief of eMusic. Now I'm a writer again, and couldn't be happier about that.


All kinds of music, Japanese supermarkets, frisbee, dark chocolate, red wine, playing drums, flea markets, reading books, holding hands and skipping stones, cooking vegetarian food, walking in the woods, modern art, classic films