Okay, it isn't just rock stars who are dropping like flies. Now it's rock critics.
In this case, one of the handful of that breed who might conceivably have been inhabited by genius.
I didn't know Nick Tosches personally, but for years he was a fixture at a watering hole we shared in the Village, where I used to see him at the bar all the time. I found him an incredibly intimidating figure, for a variety of reasons, and frankly, if anybody had ever introduced me to him I would probably have gone into full humiliating "I'm not worthy" mode.
Which is to say he was sort of an idol of mine, and with good reason, I think.
For starters, this book...
...which began its life as an early 70s series in CREEM magazine, turned me on to scads of great music I hadn't known about. It's also one of the two or three funniest tomes ever written about rock-and-roll.
And this one...
...which is also pretty hilarious, is not only the greatest celebrity biography ever, but quite possibly the most profound, perceptive and eloquent meditation on existential nullity and the nature of fame in the English language.
Seriously, it rises to the level of, dare I say, literature, and if you haven't read it, your life is the poorer for it.
Bottom line: RIP, Nick. You were an irreplaceable original.