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Hardcover Baby Plays Around: A Love Affair, with Music Book

ISBN: 1400060141

ISBN13: 9781400060146

Baby Plays Around: A Love Affair, with Music

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Format: Hardcover

Condition: Good

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Book Overview

By the author of the bestsellingFive-Finger Discount, a hip, funny, and absorbing memoir of a journalist realizing a lifelong dream-playing drums in a rock band-as her marriage hits the rocks Helene... This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Yeah Baby , You Really Got Me!

I am always on the lookout for authentic books that deal with the music scene -- and I'm not talking about the countless fan books, nor the ones that are simply out to attack one genre or another. Stapinski's entertaining book is written with insight, passion, and unassuming honesty. On the surface it's just another band getting into playing music, being creative, and trying to make it one way or another. It is refreshing that it's not about a famous band, but a chronicle of one of the millions of groups that form and dissolve almost daily. It's easy to forget that each band is made up of musicians -- i.e., people struggling with their individual destinies and myriad relationships (the essence of all good fiction or non fiction). Having played in many bands myself, I could relate to many of the archetypal scenes described. But more than that it took a critical look at the phenomenon of rock, as well as being informative -- especially in regard to the club scene of New York City. A true delight! -- and the last page came all too soon.

Truly a love affair...

"Baby Plays Around --A Love Affair with Music" really is the perfect title for this book. The author plays around town in a rock band; her husband just plain plays around. His isn't the only affair here though. At first glance you might think that this book is meant for a pretty select audience, being about a little band struggling to make it in the New York club scene, but Helene Stapinski is really writing about relationships. As a band member, she must deal with the interpersonal dynamics occuring amongst a group of people trying to be creative and successful, and to add to the complexity of the situation, the band (at least for a time) also includes her husband. Jealousy, competition, ambition, anger and fear all come into play, but each are in a way quelled by the experience of music --an experience that seems to be an awful lot like love. Though I'm a pretty slow reader, I finished Baby Plays Around in just a couple of days. It held me in both its details and the arc of the character's emotional growth --which I think should be the measure of any great story.


One of the richest, and perhaps one of the most honest nonfiction books I've read, Helene Stapinksi mines her obsessions, both music and love, to create a riveting masterpiece. This story of a freelance writer who falls through the rabbit hole to end up living a childhood fantasy -- as a drummer in a band -- speaks to any of us who hold a dream in our hearts about 'what could have been' were we to follow our wilder creative spirits. But it comes with a price, with significant and painful fallout in many of her relationships, particularly with her husband, and Stapinski doesn't spare any of the uncomfortable, awkward, and many times hilarious experiences she encounters, taking the reader on a wild ride through the smoky downtown clubs in Alphabet City. The writing is so inviting and personal you feel as though you're helping her lug her cymbals as she chases the chimera of musical fame, and discovers the true meaning of unconditional love: a love that persists through our fleeting, nonsensical adventures.

She's nailed it

As a woman who has played in bands since...well, let's not go there because it dates me...I truly appreciate Helene's female perspective on the music business and the complexities of interpersonal band dynamics. Whoever said that "dysfunctional family" was a redundant term could just as easily have been talking about bands. I'm in two of them at the moment, and they both drive me CRAZY...but when it works, you remember why you put up with it. Helene did a brilliant job of putting into words the way it truly feels when the music clicks...and when it doesn't. I salute her courage and honesty.

Baby, read this book!

I am a working mother with no time to read.... When I picked up this book (after reading Ms. Stapinski's fantastic first book) I simply did not put it down until the end. It has the perfect mix of music and relationships and how the two are connected in her life. She has a knack for sprinkling in her self-deprecating humor in all the right places.I absolutely loved this book...If you are in the mood for a good ride, this is the novel for you!
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