Energy Follows Thought: The Stories Behind My Songs

Morrow. Oct. 2023. 384p. ISBN 9780063272200. $50. MUSIC
Prolific singer/songwriter Nelson, with coauthors David Ritz (The God Groove) and Nelson’s longtime harmonica player, Mickey Raphael, fill this book with stories and reflections, although it’s not entirely a memoir. The lyrics in each chapter are thematically linked with accompanying commentary, autobiography, and late-night philosophy. Some of the chapters are album titles, and some link together Nelson songs that feature similar characters or themes—love and heartbreak feature heavily. Some are more conceptual or abstract, such as “Lonely Places” or “Abandoned Houses.” Nelson writes, “If there are rules for storytelling, I never learned them,” but his songwriting has consistently been indicative of a born storyteller. It’s fun and, at times, illuminating to read about where some of those stories stemmed from. The photos are great too.
VERDICT A sweet and intimate retrospective of a long and prolific career. This book will make readers feel like they’ve sat down with Nelson, who has just regaled them with tales.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing