Corn Flakes With John Lennon
August 22, 2010
Filed under Books
As the title of this book so aptly states, Corn Flakes With John Lennon is Robert Hilburn’s close encounters of the Rock ‘n’ Roll kind. Hilburn started working as a freelance music writer, and eventually became the go-to guy for musicians from the likes of Ice Cube and Jack White to Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen. Having grown up listening to country and early Elvis recordings, Hilburn was equipped with all the
conversation starters he’d really ever need. How do you break the ice with John Lennon or Bono? You talk about Elvis Presley.
For Hilburn, interviewing was an art, and he did it right. The book delves into his most private interviews and reveals the human underneath the rock stars, like why Lennon had a soft spot for a bowl of corn flakes and cream.
It’s interesting to see how someone would go about interviewing someone of Michael Jackson or Kurt Cobain’s caliber. Before I read Corn Flakes, I respected the musicians Hilburn interviewed as artists, but not people. Take Bono. What with (Product)Red, and his charity, I wrote off U2 for just being what launched Bono into the stratosphere. But after reading the book, I got a look at what U2 was really about, and why Bono felt he needed to fund these huge charity benefits.
Hilburn’s been around since rock music started and he is more than a “pop music” critic, he’s a critic of the world of rock ’n’ roll. He has a right to be. For all that it contains, Corn Flakes is an easy read. or maybe it’s an easy read for all that it contains.