Sheriff McCoy
Andy McCoy and Ike Vil
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Buy *Sheriff McCoy: Outlaw Legend of Hanoi Rocks* by Andy McCoy and Ike Vil online

Sheriff McCoy: Outlaw Legend of Hanoi Rocks
Andy McCoy and Ike Vil
Bazillion Points
204 pages
September 2009
rated 4 of 5 possible stars

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Andy McCoy may be a name unknown except to his most fervent fans, but in his native Finland, he has as much clout as Keith Richards. McCoy borrowed his image from punk, pop, glam and streetwise pirate, and the music he made with Hanoi Rocks influenced a generation of rockers including Guns N' Roses and Motley Crue.

In his darkly humorous and forthright autobiography, he tells the tale of his life. He describes how he put together Hanoi Rocks with outrageous blond frontman Michal Monroe and brought together the punk ethos of the Sex Pistols and the Ramones with the glam of David Bowie. He talks about how Razzle, the band's drummer, was killed when he was a passenger in the car of a very drunk Vince Neil, and how it took McCoy and the remaining members two decades to get over it.

It is a tale of drugs and electric guitars; of excess and abuse. There was the time when Razzle set David Coverdale's hair on fire and the moment he found his true musical voice by selling the Fender Telecaster his dad had purchased for him to buy a three-pickup '58 Gibson Les Paul Black Beauty.

Andy also talks about life after Hanoi Rocks, when he turned into pill-popping loser along with other mainline junkies like Steven Adler. McCoy would leave Los Angeles, where he'd turned into a hardcore drug abuser, to go on the road as Iggy Pop's guitar player and eventually get back together with Michael Monroe for a Hanoi Rocks reunion.

Dark though many of these elements are, McCoy is able to smile about it and brings a lot of humor to these episodes. For a true unfiltered look at one of rock's unsung heroes, pick this up.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at Steven Rosen, 2011

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