Sunday, November 13, 2011

Chasing the Dragon...the life and death of Marc Hunter by Jeff Apter.

Apter`s last book on the Finn brothers from Te Awamutu was as dull as ditch water, hardly his fault as it appears all access doors were shut in his face. This book is vastly different and of course the subject is different but in common is a magnificent song writing talent and iconic status, the Finn brothers are still alive.
Enjoying far more access and help from those who knew Marc Hunter, this is a lively, entertaining if horrifying retelling of the life of a man who was blessed with great gifts and equally great demons and sadly those demons contributed to the early death of a man who personified showmanship and rock`n' roll, who fronted with real panache one of the truly great New Zealand bands whose Anthems still rock the house and whose April Sun In Cuba would be known to most young Kiwi`s, which is a telling point in staying power.
Brought up in a big, loving Taumarunui family with a thoroughly supportive Mum and a rather harsher Dad, Marc along with brother Todd were never destined for small town life, especially the rather incorrigible Marc.
With a musical talent that was evident from a young age the bright lights of the big City beckoned and so did the woman,drink, drugs and a life led in a very fast lane indeed. For all his many gifts there appears little doubt that Marc could be tricky to say the least, he could also be loving and loyal but it was often said that you never knew which Marc you would wake up with and his life left a trail of real damage in the lives of those closest to him.
With success came the trappings of a drug fuelled lifestyle and an ability to live like there was no tomorrow.
Death struck more than once in their heady circle and a settled lifestyle came a wee bit too late. But for all the drink and drugs this book more than succeeds in honoring the Hunter Brothers and their fellow band members talents and contribution to our wider musical history. Easy to read, it is fair and balanced, full of gossip and impossible to put down, even when you go Yuck! Apter has done a good job with this book and while there will be those that don`t like it or agree with his telling, not slamming doors in Apters face has paid  off, the subjects of this book are certainly not as dull as ditch water, neither are they precious.

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