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Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 23, 2012 2:39 pm

Did you know Jerry has fallen out with the other TCB guys. I spoke to Glen Hardin the other day and confirmed they hadn't spoken for at least a year and didn't want to discuss why. He also confirmed that he didn't envisage them working together again.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 23, 2012 3:40 pm

andyr wrote:Did you know Jerry has fallen out with the other TCB guys. I spoke to Glen Hardin the other day and confirmed they hadn't spoken for at least a year and didn't want to discuss why. He also confirmed that he didn't envisage them working together again.


Jerry's book may fully close the door for future cooperation or even friendship between him and the TCB band..
I heard in his book especially hardin gets a "treatment".

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Thu Mar 29, 2012 6:49 am

I have just read Jerry's book and Boy does he skip through the Elvis years FAST. Hardly much mention at all really-maybe his most in-depth period is when he joined the TCB Band in 1969.....all other times just get a brief paragraph before he moves on.The book starts 'ok' but then i started to not enjoy it after that. won't be reading it again.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Thu Mar 29, 2012 7:36 am

So, a band has a break-up almost 35 years after they actually broke up? :shock:

This has gotta be something for the history books!

rjm
P.S. -- A deceased front-man on giant video screens does not a band make . . . they broke up in 1977. Or maybe earlier, actually.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Thu Mar 29, 2012 4:20 pm

Personally I expected more from this book than was actually delivered. There is nothing particularly revealing about his personal or professional relationship with his biggest act - Elvis Presley. In fact, although he comes across as liking Elvis one gets the distinct impression that he does not like the showbiz aura surrounding him - the circus atmosphere - as he puts it. One would think that a young embryo bass player suddenly chosen to play in the band of the Greatest Artist of the 20th Century would have been more generous in his praise. He could also have used a more 'kindly' photograph of Elvis on the front cover! Further, he goes on to state that the deceased musician he personally misses the most is John Denver despite his never really being friends with him whilst he was alive.

There is also scant coverage of his working with other artists e.g. Bob Dylan, The Doors, Roy Orbison and Elvis Costello. The main thrust of the book appears to be his formative years and his love for jazz and jazz musicians against a backdrop of racial discrimination experienced by them.

However, to be fair it does not pull any punches and there are some amusing stories along the way. It also shows how dedicated one must be to succeed in the music business as a musician as well as how important it is to be in the right place at the right time.

Overall a good read but could have been better with more recollections from the other members of Elvis' TCB Band.

Brian

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Thu Mar 29, 2012 4:57 pm

I am about halfway through the book, and it's slowing down for me. Decent, so far, but certainly could have more info. When I get beyond the Elvis info, I'll see where my interest level is.

Jerry did mention having asked Glen about using certain anecdotes, so it would be reasonable to assume any fallout they've had wouldn't come from "surprises" in the book. But, who knows....

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Thu Mar 29, 2012 5:08 pm

Jerry prefaces his memories of life with Glen by saying he obtained Glen's permission to publish the stories. Still, the accounts don't portray Glen in a flattering light.

Jerry was on a whole lotta drugs back in the day, including hallucinogens (during some of Elvis' Vegas shows). One could understand why his memory would be cloudy.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Thu Mar 29, 2012 7:32 pm

havnt started mine yet, now wondering whether to bother or not...........

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Thu Mar 29, 2012 10:42 pm

Yes one of Jerry's best stories is when he first played with a band aged just 14 and played so hard his fingers blustered & bled! Regarding concerts with Elvis he does seem vague and early on in the book without specifically saying he had 'bad habits' says he had 4 or 5 of a list of bad habits from a list he types! what quite surprised me was he hated 'Vegas' so much he did all he could to stay away from the hilton(despite free rooms) and separate himself from the Elvis after show party scene etc. Basically apart from the 'superfly coat' description from the Jungle Room sessions Jerry wasn't particularily 'close' to Elvis after all and his description of how he didn't even plan to take the 1969 Vegas gig was amazing! his complete lack of much reference to any recording sessions seems to be because he cannot remember and why he refers the reader to watch TTWIII rehearsals for an 'idea!'. Dissapointing book but with just a few good enough stories to be worth reading. Don't (as he says in his preface) expect to learn much at all about his life as its just a musical travelogue, NOT a personal biography....only thing personally you read about is him successfully having prostrate cancer treated quite some years ago.I (think) he must be on reasonable terms with Glen D.Hardin and he says in his book he talked on the phone with Glen about his Prostrate Cancer diagnosis .He also mentions why he left playing the Elvis Tour that is still playing....he had just simply had enough 'walking on Elvis's Grave!'. Worth reading but Jerry Schillings book is a much more revealing read. :roll:

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Thu Mar 29, 2012 11:19 pm

Doesn't talk about Elvis, Dylan, or the Doors? Why would we want to know about his "formative years," when he had these rather interesting experiences with some of the greatest musicians ever? This makes no sense!

It's like he's ashamed of it ALL. Weird.

rjm
P.S. -- Don't remember where I read it, but didn't Jerry have an unpleasant split with Bob? Something, maybe, to do with (Jerry's use of) drugs??? I don't know. Just an unclear memory.

Saw ElvisJock's post about his drug use . . . that seems to explain it. So why was he so turned off on Elvis's after-show thing? Kinda hypocritical, if you ask me!

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:40 am

:| Yes Scheff goes onto describe Ronnie Tutts bar fridge with 8 different kinds of Pot in it and said after a Grateful Dead tour in 1976 he needed 2 days before he could focus on playing for Elvis again! A lot of what Jerry says are quite weird. Even his description of Girls around him on the tours read quite strange also!!
The main Focus of his music in the book seems to be Jazz interests! sounds like playing for Elvis was just simply a well paid Job for Jerry b4 Neil Diamond or John Denver!!~~ :|

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:49 am

YDKM wrote: sounds like playing for Elvis was just simply a well paid Job for Jerry b4 Neil Diamond or John Denver!!

You have to remember that the gig with Elvis probably became quite sterile, monotonous, repetitive, and uninspiring. Had it remained at the 1969-1970 or even 1971-1972 level; his recollection and feeling towards the Elvis experience would probably be much different. When I hear those mid-‘70s shows, I hear a disinterested band on cruise-control making a paycheck.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:54 am

ah yes but Jerry also says that towards the end of playing with John Denver the audience seeing him halved as he just performed more love ballads.!

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:06 am

YDKM wrote::| Yes Scheff goes onto describe Ronnie Tutts bar fridge with 8 different kinds of Pot in it and said after a Grateful Dead tour in 1976 he needed 2 days before he could focus on playing for Elvis again! A lot of what Jerry says are quite weird. Even his description of Girls around him on the tours read quite strange also!!
The main Focus of his music in the book seems to be Jazz interests! sounds like playing for Elvis was just simply a well paid Job for Jerry b4 Neil Diamond or John Denver!!~~ :|

He said Ronnie was like a wine collector only with pot. Funny story.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 4:14 am

Nice to hear that Neil Diamond paid Ronnie's medical bills after his heart attack and stroke.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:05 pm

Another review of Jerry's book. Please go to the following URL:

http://www.seattlepi.com/lifestyle/blog ... 445298.php

Brian

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:08 pm

That's an extremely well written and VERY fair review thanks Brian! :lol:

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:13 pm

YDKM wrote:That's an extremely well written and VERY fair review thanks Brian! :lol:


I thought so too Geoff. It would be interesting to read similar books from other members of the TCB Band.

Brian :)

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:19 pm

Very good review I agree with it.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Mar 30, 2012 7:34 pm

Thanks for including that review, Brian. I can now see that the purpose of this book is different from many others that we have become accustomed to. Jerry's approach in this book is therefore understandable. I personally don't begrudge him name-checking an Elvis song or the man himself in the title and subtitle. A book needs some marketing term or reference that will actually get it out there.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Apr 20, 2012 3:44 am

I finished the book last night, and it left me empty, really. The objective of an autobiography is to get close to the subject, but I still don't feel I know Jerry very well. There was great info on his time with John Denver, but scant info on the Doors, and lots more hanging in the weeds where Dylan is concerned. For me, there was far too much info on players few of us have ever heard of, and the story is rather disjointed.

The very last sentence in the book said a lot, or did it? It reads, "I will go on playing behind people I love--even if it means playing alongside some people I don't. But I don't think I'll dance on Elvis's grave again."

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:20 am

Yes Jerry is obviously a VERY private man- so don't expect to read about Him in the book, nor much Elvis detail either!~ :|

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Apr 20, 2012 1:35 pm

Unlike most here I REALLY enjoyed it!
It was a very "easy read" - i thought he had a nice easy-going style like listening to an old Uncle telling you favourites tales.

I knew that (from the title) it wasn't going to be all about Elvis - and I did get the idea I knew Jerry Scheff better after reading the book than I did before.
.. the fishing, early jazz years, not staying at The Hilton, his friends, PLUS all the other bands he came across.

I wanted to read all the way to the end & my only complaint was that it was all too short.

However for only $14 I had no issue with it.
Sure MORE Elvis would have been GREAT but I wouldn't want him to to fake the stories if he didn't remember them.

AND if you have chatted to these guys you know that it was "just-another-working-day" for them and unless they kept diaries (Boy, I'm sure they all wish they had, looking back) most of it is a blur.

Jerry doesn't skip the fact that a lot of dope passed their way, so it is understandable.
I also enjoyed learning about his early years.

In-depth review and EXTRACTS here
>>

http://www.elvisinfonet.com/book_review ... raphy.html

Perhaps reading it on a sunny Australian beach, on a lazy holiday helped!

Cheers
Piers

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Apr 20, 2012 2:06 pm

I was fine with him not doing an entire Elvis-related book. I was just hopeful of more stories about the artists with whom he's worked. There have been so many of them over the years that I expected a wealth of that. He gave us some, and it was very interesting, but there must be much more.

Anyway, I knew Jerry to be a private guy, so I'm not shocked that he didn't completely open up his life. I guess it just left me with more questions than answers.

Re: Jerry Scheff's autobiog on the way!

Fri Apr 20, 2012 2:11 pm

I cannot stand all those guys who try to pretend to have lived in wonderland while they played with Elvis and I also cannot stand those how write horror stories or pretend to have been the King's best friend.

Jerry describes his work with Elvis as an every day job and that's what it actually was: Work! A lot of people seem to expect that the King is the center of Jerry's book, but he just played on the show from 1969 to 1973 (February) and 1975-1977. So his time with the TCB band is not the biggest part of his career and especially the last three years may also not have been the most thrilling ones.

Of course the books lacks details here and there, but that's ok to me. If I was 70 years old and would talk about my life and my work, I surely would mix up a lot of stuff, too. And right at the beginning of the book, Jerry himself asks the reader not to expect too much details.

It's no book about Jerry's years with Elvis, it's a book about his whole life. His appearances with the King made him known by the fans and surely earned him quite some money. But Elvis obviously was not the center of his world and he obviously doesn't need to tell the fans what they want to hear like so many others do.

WAY DOWN is a book about Jerry. He seems honest and that's fine to me.