Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Joe Bonomo  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Non-Fiction Poetry

Audience: Adult;

Born: Wheaton, Maryland


-- Facebook -- https://www.facebook.com/jwbon
-- Facebook -- http://www.facebook.com/people/Joseph-Bonomo/100001036027011#!/profile.php?id=657877505&sk=info=joe+bonomo
-- Instagram -- http://instagram.com/jwbon#
-- Twitter -- https://twitter.com/BonomoJoe
-- Website -- http://www.nosuchthingaswas.com/
-- Joe Bonomo on WorldCat -- http://www.worldcat.org/search?q=joe+bonomo


Illinois Connection

Bonomo resides in DeKalb, Illinois and has been an English professor at Northern Illinois University since 1995.

Biographical and Professional Information

Joe Bonomo is a poet, essayist and rock and roll writer. He was born and raised in suburban Washington, D.C.; graduating from the University of Maryland. His masters and PhD were earned from Ohio University. His personal essays and poems have appeared in numerous print and online journals and magazines. Along with his books listed below, Bonomo also edited, ''Conversations with Greil Marcus''.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

Jerry Lee Lewis: Lost and Found
ISBN: 0826429661

Continuum. 2009

A superb new study of Jerry Lee Lewis that's as intense and fast paced as the life of "The Killer" himself, from the height of fame to the bumpy road that followed

"The category in which Jerry Lee Lewis truly belongs is 'Jerry Lee Lewis.' The Killer is as big as Mount Rushmore, and he's also as American, as revered, as cliché d, as misunderstood, as corny, and as taken for granted as that monument. The curse of iconoclastic American success. Elvis felt it, so does Dylan. So will others who haven't been born yet."

The story of Louisiana hellcat Jerry Lee Lewis and his 1958 wedding scandal—it was discovered that at 22 he had married his 13-year old second cousin, Myra, before he was divorced from his second wife—long ago took precedence over the man himself and the music he makes. In Jerry Lee Lewis: Lost and Found, author Joe Bonomo lets others focus on the scandal and delves more deeply into the accidental intersection between fading American Rockabilly and ascending Beatlemania. By first taking a look at the critical years before his famed night in 1964 at West Germany's Star-Club — what that meant not only for him but the entire live album-making world — then the tumultuous years that follow, culminating in his time on the American Country charts in the late 60s/ early 70s, Bonomo brings Jerry Lee Lewis to life in new and fascinating ways.

In spite of plummeting record sales and concert fees, a media savaging of his personal character, a change of record labels and management, and a considerable upturn in his drug and alcohol abuse, Jerry Lee Lewis has persevered. In between being betrayed and ignored, he would record one of the greatest rock &roll performances in history. Bonomo's thorough research includes new interviews with Live at the Star-Club producer Sigi Loch, members of the Nashville Teens, and other musicians and fans who were at the Star-Club performance, as well as with music industry figures ranging from famed Nashville producer Jerry Kennedy and legendary Memphis stalwart Jim Dickinson to Killer-influenced contemporaries John Doe and Dave Alvin. This passionate book examines and explains the almighty impact of the Father of Rock'n'Roll.


AC DC's Highway To Hell (33 1/3)
ISBN: 1441190287

Continuum. 2010

Released in 1979, AC/DC's Highway To Hell was the infamous last album recorded with singer Bon Scott, who died of alcohol poisoning in London in February of 1980. Officially chalked up to "Death by Misadventure," Scott's demise has forever secured the album's reputation as a partying primer and a bible for lethal behavior, branding the album with the fun chaos of alcoholic excess and its flip side, early death. The best songs on Highway To Hell achieve Sonic Platonism, translating rock & roll's transcendent ideals in stomping, dual-guitar and eighth-note bass riffing, a Paleolithic drum bed, and insanely, recklessly odd but fun vocals.
Joe Bonomo strikes a three-chord essay on the power of adolescence, the durability of rock & roll fandom, and the transformative properties of memory. Why does Highway To Hell matter to anyone beyond non-ironic teenagers? Blending interviews, analysis, and memoir with a fan's perspective, Highway To Hell dramatizes and celebrates a timeless album that one critic said makes "disaster sound like the best fun in the world."

This Must Be Where My Obsession With Infinity Began
ISBN: 0615755453

Orphan Press. 2013

In this provocative collection of essays, Joe Bonomo interrogates the dark edges of his suburban youth and explores issues of spirituality, sex, violence, and myth. From the memory of a rebellious Catholic schoolgirl to a coming-of-age story in a porn theater, Bonomo turns a prism lens on desire and faith and the body's role in both, and ultimately questions the fallibility as well as the enduring power of memory.


Awards

Bonomo is a recipient of fellowship awards in both prose and poetry from the Illinois Arts Council.

Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagement Availability (No)