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  • Wonderland Avenue: Tales of Glamour and Excess
  • Danny Sugerman
  • English
  • 20 October 2017

About the Author: Danny Sugerman

Daniel Stephen Sugerman aka Danny was the second manager of the Los Angeles based rock band The Doors, and wrote several books about Jim Morrison and The Doors.



10 thoughts on “Wonderland Avenue: Tales of Glamour and Excess

  1. says:

    I owe this book some fanmail It is a wonderland of uncut emotion Did it make me want to take drugs Maybe Right up until the point where it didn t It made me want to stick to my guns It made me want to live for something bigger than me There is nothing abstract about this book There is no compromise And that s who Danny is We get to know and love him through his singleminded pursuit of his rock n roll dream For him, there just never was another option How cool is that How vintage is that kind of dedication His adoration of Jim Morrison as an older brother figure, his discovery of a safe haven within the maniacal world of music and drugs, and the path of fate down which his life rolls are related with a wit so sharp and observations so universal, you will nod out loud in agreement Describing his adolescence and young adulthood, tucked under the hypnotic leathery wing of the music industry before it even knew how big it was, his book embodies a time that will never be repeated It makes all of us, even those of us who weren t born until decades later, feel a terrible nostalgia for it.

  2. says:

    I think about my childhood A lot I think about all the television shows I watched, the books I read, the embarrassingly detailed drawings I drew of people, and all of the mildly gross substances I touched indoors and out just for the experience of doing something but it all seems goddamn boring every time I revisit this memoir.Look, I couldn t care any less about Jim Morrison or The Doors I don t find anything about him or the band appealing But EVERYTHING about Morrison and the band spoke to pre teen Danny Sugerman The Doors may mean nothing to me, but passionate little weirdo kids that take a nerd level interest in something make me resent being born with a working range of emotions.Every time I pick up this book, I m abruptly reminded that Sugerman didn t write it in present tense His writing is so gushing and enthusiastic, as if even the most minute detail of a non crucial event is pivotal to the memoir as a whole Even as a grown ass man, he wrote with the urgency and excitement of a kid who s just come home from a field trip gone awry.So read this, because twelve year old YOU didn t get to cruise down Sunset Boulevard with rock stars The best part is, in reading this, you can dive right into every thrilling, terrifying, hilarious and just downright f cked up moment with Sugerman but from the thankfully tepid comfort of your actual mundane life I almost ran head first into Jim Morrison who was heading up the stairs How come every time I see you, you re running off with something that belongs to me I just looked at him, thinking he was nuts, and probably dangerous too He felt dangerous He was still in his black leather pants but with a pea coat, collar up His hair was the longest I d ever seen And as much as I was embarrassed to admit it, he was beautiful His eyes were like green stones He looked dangerous He looked like a crazy angel I was nervous But I d be damned if I let him know it During second period, Physical Education, the class was sitting cross legged listening to somebody from the drug rehab house, Synanon, lecture us about the dangers of drugs A guy with a shaved head was telling us about how marijuana led to harder drugs, about how he first started with grass and ended up with the hard stuff A guy from the police department was with him They passed out three joints for us to pass around and look at They travelled through all sixty five of us When the dope was turned back in, the cop counted an extra three joints Out of nowhere I felt an undeniable, overwhelming tug of longing, loneliness, an impending sense of doom As the laughter died down, I became conscious of a vaguely familiar sound Through the din of the class noise, a plane droned somewhere overhead I looked at my watch It was 10 30 Jim had taken off for Paris exactly fifteen minutes ago.

  3. says:

    I am actually giving this a 4 and 1 2 star rating since the beginning for me was a bit boring, though having finished the book I see it s relevance to the second half of the book, and IMHO could have been summed up quicker Having said that, once the author Danny Sugarman got to the part where he met The Doors, at a much too young age of 13, this book was un put downable It seems like Sugarman, who also wrote the great Jim Morrison bio No One Here Gets Out Alive which, BTW, I read while my father lay dying in an ICU ward total coincidence but obviously foreboding and I admit not in good taste , was born with a kind of mad gene and total lack of self control and his growing up years didn t help in the matter His appetite for endless partying and ultimate self destruction is summed up best in Jack Kerouac s beat novel, On the Road, where he so aptly wrote mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be destroyed, mad to be saved, desirous of everything It seems Danny was on a quest for all these things and of approval of the wrong kind on a quest for self discovery and a bit lost at such a young and impressionable age Having lacked good role models while growing up he sought them where he could find them in the hedonistic world of 60 s and 70 s rock n roll, not the best place for a kid to be hanging around.This totally reminded me of Trainspotting and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas rolled into one, but pumped up quite a few notches The extent of his drug use just boggles the mind Endless parties with speedballs, ludes, uppers, downers, acidyou name it, but constantly heroine being at the center of this tilt a world At first it seems fun and harmless, just part of being in the whirlwind of the music world of the time Some parts just make you want to join in the party and be there, mingling with the pantheon of rock Gods As a reader, there is a part of you that envies him and you nod pun intended in approval.But as laugh out loud funny as some parts may be, as you keep reading you find yourself feeling like you are in the midst of, not a party, but a train wreck, no longer laughing or having fun, but awed, baffled, shocked and ultimately disgusted at just how low someone can go for a fix.How he did not die at 21, with an enlarged heart, two types of hepatitis, malnourshment and God knows what else, is a miracle in and of itself Sadly he did die at 50 of heart failure, a fairly young age to die, but just amazed he even made it that far even if he had stayed sober since, considering all the damage that had already been done to his body.If anyone is thinking of doing heroine or becoming a junkie, read this book firstit will scare you straight In the end it is a sad quixotic rock tale of the consequences of delving into the mad world of drug addiction no hands barred Ohand I am sure hanging out with Jim Morrison, Iggy Pop and Makenzie Phillips sure didn t help.

  4. says:

    3.5 stars Danny Sugerman was young, wealthy, poorly supervised, had a personality prone to obsession and no self control So certainly nothing bad could happen when he put himself under the tutelage of the Doors and then Iggy Pop, right I kept thinking to myself, When Jim Morrison is the voice of reason and moderation in your lifewhoo boy I read most of this book while sick in bed with the flu, so in a strange moment of synchronicity, I was shivering, sweat soaked and disgusting with virus, while the subject of this book was shivering, sweat soaked and disgusting with junkiedom.

  5. says:

    Danny Sugarman quite simply wrote one of the best books ever about drug addiction He had a friendship with Jim Morrison in his formative years and claims to have later had sex with Morrison s widow which, kind of freaky that He also managed the career of Iggy Pop during some of his worst excesses and was friends with people ranging from Ray Manzarek to Mackenzie Phillips You ll have sympathy for Mackenzie and her troubles of late, if you don t already, when you read the story of Sugarman resuscitating her after an OD while driving down the freeway Somewhere in this timeframe, Sugarman also developed a massive heroin habit and came very close to dying as a result Not everyone in the story is so lucky Sugarman is a great, if occasionally overwrought and self aggrandizing, raconteur and this book is full of interesting, occasionally hilarious and occasionally horrifying tales It also is infinitely effective at dissuading you from drug use than an infinite number of anti drug commercials By all accounts, Sugarman stayed clean after the trip to rehab that ended this book He died a few years ago after a long battle with lung cancer.ETA I was extremely wrong when I originally wrote this about Sugarman staying sober He relapsed after a trip overseas, developed a crack habit, and got his wife who happened to be Fawn Hall Yes, that Fawn Hall smoking crack as well They both ended up in rehab.

  6. says:

    It s written from the hip, talky, autobiography, edgy for the early 90 s , and if you ve just read Scar Tissue, then you gotta read this.In a way its very cliche Another book about being a junkie in the rock biz At times, I had to shake my head in disgust at its excess But it s par for the course when you re dealing with the excesses of the 1970 s I had read Daniel Sugarmen s biography of Jim Morrrison in No One Here Gets Out Alive, when I was 17 and into that, so I had always wondered who was this guy.And if you re an old Iggy Pop fan, and want a little side gossip about Iggy, this is your book, for Danny managed Iggy s career after the Stooges.It s sort of sad Danny makes peace with himself, yet he only died a few years ago No, this is not a spoiler for the book is over ten years old.And the narcissism is over the top with this man Just a warning He loses his mentor, Jim Morrison, then he whines about not having a job He pretty much is responsible for Tiff s suicide, yet me can t really be bothered with it because he s too busy drying out in an expensive clinic his dad paid for That part of this autobiograpy is rather disgusting.

  7. says:

    After reading Neil Strauss book The Dirt on Motley Crue terrible band, great book, also set in LA , I thought those guys won the award for excess However, they were close to 30 before they hit rock bottom after one particularly nasty incident where Vince Neil drove a motorcycle into a nightclub and had no recollection of it That incident seems trivial, after all Danny Sugerman was given a week to live at age twenty one I would hope that no one would seek to emulate him even if certain parts were laugh out loud funny and of course this was on my morning commute Although he was forced to clean up his act in the end, I say he should have been dead by about page 150 Highly recommended It makes Hunter S Thompson look like a Buddhist Monk.

  8. says:

    Danny Sugerman s book will probably attract Jim Morrison fans for its juicy gossip on the legendary singer, and they won t be disappointed Sugerman worked at The Doors business office when the band was at the peak of their career.Personally I enjoyed the book when a drugged out Sugerman managed an even drugged out Iggy Pop if such a task was possible during the glitter era early Seventies His accounts of the Sunset Strip scene back then are absolutely truthful I was there and the book took me back in time Great stuff, Danny RIP

  9. says:

    Having been obsessed with Jim Morrison in my high school years, this was a must read And even though Morrison is only seldom seen in this memoir, it doesn t matter The main character is heroin and the journey it takes Mr Sugerman on So damn good Have probably read this 6 times And have searched the Laurel Canyon area for the specific house on Wonderland Avenue that he writes about Just brilliant.

  10. says:

    Probably the best book I ve ever read

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