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Ronen Kauffman

New Brunswick, New Jersey, Goodbye: Bands, Dirty Basements, And The Search. Book

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Kauffman - writer, radio host, and Zombie Apocalypse vocalist - is taking his cultural commentary to paperback with this book; a memoir set against the New Brunswick, NJ punk and hardcore scene in the mid/late 90s. More than just an engaging personal account, it's a story about personal growth, coming of age, and the real power of punk and hardcore. Gain an insider's look at a truly influential underground movement. Kauffman's writings have appeared in Alternative Press, AMP Magazine, Outburn,, and many others.

Average Customer Rating: 5 with 2 reviews (See Below)
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Drew from San Angelo, TX 
Apr 16 2009 Rating: 5/5 Stars

This book was absolutely amazing. No complaints. I read it early summer 2008 soon after I received it in the mail. I bought the book because I listen to a podcast called "Issue Oriented" with Ronen Kauffman, and one episode I heard that he wrote a book. I knew I had to check it out because his podcast is always full of great guest interviews with bands like Sick of It All, Cro-Mags, Madball, and Anti-Flag. When I heard he had written his first book about growing up in his hometown scene and getting into music, I knew it would rule. And it did! I could not put it down. It was really a pretty easy read. The book is split into 6 chapters, by years. It begins with his obsession with media, then goes on with '94-'95, 2 chapters on '95-'96, '97-'98, and '98-'00 and then there is an epilogue. The whole thing is 191 pages. The book takes you on a journey with Ronen as he goes through different roomates, friends, and gets through college. Starting his zine, Aneurysm, and touring with his buddies in their band, the Degenerics. Also, it goes through the different bands that he played in and the people he met through good timing, location, and love for the music. There are some great pictures halfway through the book of many of the local bands that he grew up going to shows of, as well as some more well known Jersey bands such as Lifetime and the Bouncing Souls. I had to go back and check out some of the bands that I hadn't heard, the Degenerics for example, because Ronen made them sound that good. There are bands in the book that he comes in contact with through his travels such as Chuck Ragan from Hot Water Music and Dan Yemin from Lifetime/Paint it Black that will just make the reader go, "Oh hell yea!". Oh, yea he was asked by Yemin to join what would become Kid Dynamite. How rad! Anyway, the book explains the feelings he got when he was experiencing these things, people, places, and most importantly, music. He describes in a very personal way the beauty that comes out of being involved in a scene for many years. Since I'm sure you all have your own stories of growing up and going to shows, you will probably relate to this book like I did. And since you can't go back in time and live his with him, you might as well get as close as you can by reading this!

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Bob from Winter Park, FL 
Jul 16 2007 Rating: 5/5 Stars

Being from Jersey originally myself, and having lived my life not so much parallel to Ronen's, but lived around it, I can heavily relate with the stories and accounts mentioned in this book. The place, bands, people, are all very familiar to me and bring me back to a time in my youth when things were so much simpler in their complexity. Filled to the brim with anger and angst, I can relate to how Ronen felt while experiencing life in New Brunswick. Any fan of punk rock or just flat out great writing should pick this book up and read it cover to cover, and then read it again.

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