Great Falls, MT: Fast Times, Post-Punk Weirdos, and a Tale of Coming Home Again

Books on Tape. Oct. 2023. 8:16 hrs. ISBN 9780593787076. $66.50. MEMOIR
Growing up, comedian and musician Watts consistently felt like an oddball, a situation that was amplified by his being a biracial, suspender-wearing, French-speaking new kid who landed in Great Falls, MT, in the 1980s. In this distinctive memoir, Watts narrates his recollections about growing up as a post-punk “weirdo” in Great Falls and becoming a successful mainstream performer, if still a perennial misfit. He treats listeners to various accents, multiple languages, and, of course, musical interludes as he goes from feeling like an outcast to learning to fit in, chameleon-like, as he grew older. To describe this as merely a memoir does not do Watts justice. He interweaves personal narratives (about connecting with a found family of people like him and discovering his passion for improv comedy and music) with surreal asides, such as “An Open Letter to Axl Rose’s Hair” and “Ode to a Grown-Up Pippi Longstocking.” Watts regularly breaks the fourth wall, inviting listeners to share in the audio experience and echoing the stylistic elements of his live performances that have made him a cornerstone of the alt-comedy scene.
VERDICT Part memoir, part performance, part comedy riff, this vibrant audiobook is not to be missed.
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