18 and Life on Skid Row
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again; I’ve read A LOT of rock bios over the years (I’d say the majority that have come out in the past decade or so, at the very least), so it takes a lot for one to really leave a lasting impression on me. Sebastian Bach’s life story did just that. Sure, the sex, drugs, and rock n’ roll are all there as to be expected; but the difference between Bach’s book and so many others, is he doesn’t just dwell on that stuff. Bach’s journey in rock n’ roll is told through the perspective of a fan who just happened to get to live the ultimate experience of a lifetime. This approach gives his story a much more personal feel to it.
Many of the things Bach shares, from the steps leading up to his joining Skid Row (and the important role Bon Jovi actually played in the beginning), to the friendships he’s forged with the likes of some of rock’s biggest royalty (stories involving Axl Rose and Ace Frehley are some of the most interesting) are truly compelling, and at times even downright hilarious. But it’s the moments you don’t usually think about, such as his own experience with his family on 9/11, or talking to his father on his death bed (in which he brings a smile to his dad’s face by reminding him, “We got a number one record!”) that really brings out the emotions (and tears), reminding us all that even the biggest of “rock stars” are just as human as the rest of us in the end.