As the musician and writer Richard Hell tells it, he spent much of his Kentucky childhood dreaming of running away. He came to New York penniless -- and went on to become one of the influential voices of 1970s punk. He started bands like Television, the Heartbreakers and the Voidoids, and was a pivotal part of the now-iconic punk club CBGBs. Many have told Hell’s story over the years. Now, he’s telling it himself, in a book called I Dreamed I Was a Very Clean Tramp: An Autobiography. He joins us with the story.
Richard Hell was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently to talk about his journey to New York as a teenager and starting pivotal punk bands like Television, the Heartbreakers, and Richard Hell and the Voidoids. He also told us what he's listening to these days -- find out below!
Writer and musician Richard Hell charts his childhood, coming of age, and misadventures as an artist in the era of rock and roll. I Dreamed I Was a Very Clean Tramp: An Autobiography is about his journey from the hinterlands into the city in search of art and passion when he was 17. He was a pivotal voice of the age of punk, starting such seminal bands as Television, the Heartbreakers, and Richard Hell and the Voidoids, and he help make CBGB a punk ground zero.