cover image Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin): A Memoir

Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin): A Memoir

Sly Stone, with Ben Greenman. AUWA, $30 (320p) ISBN 978-0-374-60697-8

Funk legend Sylvester “Sly Stone” Stewart revisits the ups and downs of his life in this electric tell-all. One of the most creative and controversial musicians of the 1970s, Sly went from singing gospel in his Vallejo, Calif., church (“My mother said that I really came alive in front of a crowd. More than that: If they didn’t respond I would cry”) to getting married on the main stage at Madison Square Garden in 1974. With a unique groove and swooning swagger, his band—Sly and the Family Stone, formed in 1966 and disbanded in 1983—revolutionized popular music and helped shape funk, soul, and R&B with such hits as “Everyday People,” “Stand!” and “Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin).” Though the narrative sags when Sly rehashes variety show interviews verbatim, readers will be captivated by the candid renderings of his struggles with a range of mind-altering drugs across a 50-year period and his accounts of interactions with the likes of Muhammad Ali, Doris Day, Jimi Hendrix, and George Clinton. By the end, this chronicle of how a man can go from being “High on life. High on coke. High on everything” at Woodstock through living in his car “by choice” to now, in his 80s, keeping “my ears open for songs that connect back to my music” strikes a melancholy and poignant note. It’s unadulterated, unapologetic Sly. (Oct.)