The title is not without its humor, especially if we think that it is the memoirs of a forty-year-old on whose survival beyond the age of 27 no one would have bet. And because they are the ones of the boy who showed up on his first day of high school with a shiny shirt and shoes, scared among all the thugs in tracksuits and the smoke from the joints. That boy, whom his military father did not let leave the house, would end up shaking the British alternative rock scene with rage. He was the musician to whom inspiration came in narco apartments crackthe one who smoked the industry and yes, the one who almost married Kate Moss. With you, Peter Doherty. A promising kid.
The book (Editorial Alliance) is written hand in hand with the journalist Simon Spencewho persecuted for three years Peter Doherty (Hexham, 1979) to convince him to leave in writing what few would dare to confess. A life in permanent mismatch without which the story of two bands that left their mark in the first decade of the 2000s cannot be explained, The Libertines y Babyshambles. Just after, by the way, Moss made the thing about the heroin chic.
But Peter is today a rehabilitated man, satisfied with his extra kilos – proof that he left drugs behind – and happily married. Nothing to do with the savage portrait he makes of himself in the book. Or, rather, how the battle against the industry and against the world turned into an idol a boy who only fantasized about founding a group and looking like The Strokes. Because “you think you’re going to invent an incredible move,” she confesses. Always with that halo of romanticism that surrounds those who think they fell into drugs by reading John Keats y Oscar Wilde.
There is a phrase in the song You’re my Waterloo which contains Doherty’s metaphor of life and miracles: “You’re the survivor of more than one life.” Surely not even Doherty himself can explain how he has managed to see what could well be several lifetimes of crack and heroin addiction pass before his eyes. Peter, the survivor, the one who earned the license to disown Oasis (“it didn’t really suit me”) and laugh at the Rolling Stones (“a wedding cover band”, “an old man’s thing”).
The survival phrase You’re my Waterloo was actually referring to Carl Barat, whose twin brother died. Doherty settles accounts with the other soul of The Libertines: “Certain songs that were attributed to both of us were mine.” No surprise if we take into account that their love-hate relationship led them down the path of self-destruction. The first time Doherty went to jail was for having robbed his friend’s house. The others were for drugs, of course.