Not since 2001’s Motley Crue Bio The Dirt have I been so vividly transported onto the Sunset Strip of the early 1980’s. In Stephen Pearcy’s Memoir, Sex, Drugs, Ratt & Roll: My Life in Rock, written with American Gangbang author Sam Benjamin, the notorious lead singer of Ratt, really does ‘lay it down’.
Nothing is left to the imagination here and that’s what is so fun about it! You can almost smell the Aquanet coming off the pages. For die-hard members of the Ratt Pack, or anyone just mildly interested in the Sunset Strip scene of the early eighties, this book will not disappoint.
Personally, I’m a fan of biographies that follow a natural flow from beginning to end and this memoir does it flawlessly. The memories are tied together by therapy excerpts from Stephen’s time spent in rehab at Pasadena Recovery Center (later of Dr. Drew fame). I’m not sure the good Doctor in these sessions knew quite what he was in for when asking seemingly innocent questions and getting anything but innocent answers, but what the reader receives is the uncensored, inside scoop, and it’s priceless.
Not only will you feast on the full Ratt story from San Diego, back up north to Hollywood, but you will also be treated to the earliest Van Halen moments, the mayhem of Motley Crue, and more Ozzy debauchery. Add to that a little bit of Poison, Rough Cutt, and GNR. You just can’t go wrong with a line up like that.
Now if you’re shy be wary, because sex is the first word in the title for a reason. Sex, almost as much as the music itself, is the predominant theme here. This is to be expected and appreciated (if you take into account Pearcy’s meticulous organizational skills and rating system to keep them all straight). Not bad for an alcohol and pain-killer fueled Rock God.
You’ll be awed by Pearcy’s drive, saddened by Crosby’s downfall, and left breathless by the Rolling Hilton of tours past.
I didn’t go into this book as a tried and true Ratt fan. Of course they were always around: MTV, Radio, Metal Edge, Hit Parader if you were a rock fan in the 80’s and 90’s Ratt was certainly a part of your world, but I wasn’t one of the die-hards. I actually never even saw them live until this year, but after this book, I just may be now.