REVIEW: My Punk Rock Book by Michael Essington

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by BC Caldwell

 Sparkplug staff writer, Michael Essington, has released his latest addition to his collection of punk rock memoirs. MY PUNK ROCK BOOK is a collection of interviews and live music reviews Mike has written over the years, here in Los Angeles. There are also a few personal stories included that really shows you the essence of who Mike is and the background he came from.

Interviews from Greg Hetson (Circle Jerks, Bad Religion) and also interviews with Ron Reyes (Black Flag) are just some of the amazing interviews Mike put together for this punk collection. Each chapter represents a new piece, starting from punks shows at a roller rink in the 80s, then ending up at more recent punk shows of the 2010s.

Some of my favorite parts of this particular book were the interviews with some of the writers and behind the scenes people of the scene. Stephen Blush of American Hardcore was a particular favorite interview, as well as, the interview with Monk Rock, the roadie from Social Distortion. A little personal shout out to Mike. Thank you for letting me remember some of those nights I totally forgot about while playing in my band, Million Kids, years ago. That airliner show was a debacle for us. It was nice to find out what actually happened after we left. 

What I always like about Mike’s writing is the, straight to the point methodology he uses in his delivery. He makes you feel like you’re wearing the leather jacket with him standing in line at the show and waiting to experience the full bore energy that a punk show brings. Although he represents himself modestly throughout the book as someone that maybe wasn’t the cool kid, I’m here to tell you Mike is the cool kid and I’m impressed by the quiver of books he’s produced since writing for Sparkplug Magazine.  Definitely pick up a copy of his latest book, it’s a great read, from a great author, don’t miss out.


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