The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer & The Community of Friends
Turns out that famous recording artists are people with all the flaws, failings and feelings of everyone else you’ve ever known. As much as that should be a “duh,” I was pretty disappointed after Melissa Etheridge’s jilted partner aired dirty laundry about how Etheridge saved her emotions for her songs. That disclosure, true or not, soured my appreciation of her art. I became aware of Amanda Palmer through her TED talk and the enthusiasm of some of my Alt friends. What I first loved about her was her message of the importance of the connection between artists and their community and how commercial media doesn’t get it.
If you’re a Palmer fan, than you’ve probably already read the book (or lived it). If you’ve watched her TED talk and are curious, if you want to know how the Internet can change our relationships with the media producers that we love, if you once thought about how things would be different if you had risked following your heart, than this memoir is for you. I would also recommend getting the audio-version of the book read by Palmer. Her quirkiness, vulnerability and authenticity comes across in the recording. I’ve been lucky enough to have a few honest, out-of-the-box artist friends who have tried to keep me honest and helped when I’ve wandered from my path in life. I’m not really a big fan of her music, but I love her mission and how Palmer shared how her amazing journey began and survived because of her circle of friends and community. Enjoy.