Kristin Hersh On New Book, Troubled Friendship With Vic Chesnutt | WABE 90.1 FM

Kristin Hersh On New Book, Troubled Friendship With Vic Chesnutt

Sep 28, 2015

Kristin Hersh and Vic Chesnutt playing together at The Mint in Los Angeles in 2000.
Credit Kerina and Michael Marcon

A new nonfiction book by singer-songwriter Kristin Hersh looks at her long friendship with the late Vic Chesnutt.

Originally from Athens, Georgia, Chesnutt was a musician's musician. He never achieved commercial success, but his 17 albums were championed by artists such as R.E.M. singer Michael Stipe and the Indigo Girls. 

Chesnutt died in 2012 after an overdose of muscle relaxants.

Hersh's new book, "Don't Suck, Don't Die: Giving Up Vic Chesnutt," is an ode, an elegy and an examination of the physics of friendship. She and Chesnutt toured together frequently, and many of the book's moments are culled from those experiences.

In this interview, she spoke with WABE about the challenge of writing honestly about a friendship that could be difficult at times.

Hersh has released more than 20 albums in her solo career and with her bands Throwing Muses and 50 Foot Wave. She’ll be reading from her book Friday at The Highland Ballroom Lounge and playing Saturday at Smith’s Olde Bar.