Now Available: Lives of the Poets (With Guitars)

Ray Robertson is an irrepressible voice, with brass balls, and a heart of gold.

—Jonathan Evison (author of The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving)

"The days of poets moping around castle steps wearing black capes is over. The poets of today are amplified."


Picking up where Samuel Johnson left off more than two centuries ago, Ray Robertson's Lives of the Poets (with Guitars) offers up an amplified gathering of thirteen portraits of rock & roll, blues, folk, and alt-country's most inimitable artists. Irreverent and riotous, Robertson explores the "greater or lesser heat" with which each musician shaped their genre, while offering absorbing insight into their often tumultuous lives.

Includes essays on Gene Clark, Ronnie Lane, The Ramones, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Townes Van Zandt, Little Richard, Alan Wilson, Willie P. Bennett, Gram Parsons, Hound Dog Taylor, Paul Siebel, Willis Alan Ramsey, and John Hartford.

Read about the creation of this exciting new title over at CBC.

Ray Robertson is the Jerry Lee Lewis of North American Letters.

—Chuck Kinder (author of Honeymooners and The Last Mountain Dancer)

Ray Robertson is the author of the novels Home Movies, Heroes, Moody Food, Gently Down the Stream, What Happened Later, David, and I Was There the Night He Died, as well as two collections of non-fiction: Mental Hygiene: Essays on Writers and Writing and Why Not? Fifteen Reasons to Live. His most recent book, a collection of essays entitled Lives of the Poets (with Guitars), has just been published. Born and raised in Southwestern Ontario, he lives in Toronto.

When he describes the art and craft of these 13 artists . . . you can hear the tender vocals, the searing guitars, every one of their creative idiosyncrasies. And you can feel Robertson's passion for the material in every word . . . he's done meticulous research to learn their life stories and delve into their personal pedcadillos . . . boy, can he write

NOW Magazine

One of Canada's finest novelists.

Ottawa Express