In her new book, Without Getting Killed or Caught: The Life and Music of Guy Clark, writer, producer, and Grammy winner Tamara Saviano chronicles the life story of one of the country’s most revered and esteemed songwriters. Divided into three sections or time periods, “The Beginning,” Nashville,” and “Guy and Me,” Saviano takes you on a journey, telling you the story of Clark’s life beginning with his childhood in Monahans, Texas and ending with his death on May 17th, 2016.
In “The Beginning,” we learn about Guy’s parents and grandparents, his experience wood carving (which ultimately influenced his songwriting and guitar making), and his friendship with Lola (which had a profound impact on his life), as well as the initial meeting he had with his life’s love, Susanna.
The second section “Nashville,” engages readers with highlights and lowlights of Clark’s career and personal life including pulling back the curtain on the extremely complicated relationship between Clark, Susanna, and Townes Van Zandt. In addition, Saviano weaves commentary from friends, colleagues and admirers with the back stories on some of Clark’s most well-known songs while tying in the politics of the industry and the emergence of the Americana scene.
The final section, “Guy and Me” finds her detailing her own relationship with Clark, as biographer, producer, reporter and friend. In the end, it’s clear that Clark shared much with Saviano, giving her an all access, and intimate pass, into all aspects of his life. And in doing so, created a book that not only left you fully aware (if you weren't already) that Clark was a master songwriter - a poet, whose songs touched many - but that he was also son, father, husband, skilled luthier, generous friend, compassionate mentor, champion of the arts, and most importantly….human, a man who had faults and strengths like the rest of us.
Without Getting Killed or Caught is a lengthy, detailed, and fascinating read - a lovingly crafted homage that is essential reading for any music lover.
Purchase Without Getting Killed or Caught here