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Stuff for the Teen Age, Popular Music

Battery Park Teens Recommend: Licensed to Ill and I am Ozzy


Ben volunteers at the Battery Park branch and is an expert on all things Rock! Here are two of his recent picks.

Licensed to Ill - Beastie Boys

I am Ozzy - Ozzy Osbourne

Ozzy’s dad thought his son was either going to do something amazing with his life or end up in jail. He was right: before the age of 18 Ozzy Osbourne was thrown into jail for burglary, but he also grew up to do something amazing. 

We all know Ozzy Osbourne as a person who has probably done all drugs in existence, and also the one who bit the head off a living bat, but that isn’t all the famous Prince of Darkness has done. This autobiography retells Ozzy’s life from his school days, to his life on the road with Black Sabbath, and eventually making his own solo band. This story tells the memorable moments of his life, from the pranks he pulled with his lads in Black Sabbath to the tragic death of his lead guitarist, Randy Rhoads.

I would recommend this book to any fan of Ozzy Osbourne, or anyone who is willing to read one of the craziest autobiographies ever. This book was a thrill ride from page one and was so hard to stop reading. You’re in for the treat of discovering the infamous parts of Osbourne’s life when you read I Am Ozzy.

The music of the Beastie Boys has one of the best fusions of hip hop and rock and roll. One of the most memorable songs on the album, "Fight for Your Right," has nice guitar provided by  Kerry King, and MCA did an insane job of busting out those lyrics. "Brass Monkey" took hip hop to a whole new level with an insane beat, letting MCA do his amazing lyricist work. Once again, Kerry King provided a great solo in "No Sleep Till Brooklyn." This song used a great combination of rock and rap with some nice lyrics and a great guitar solo. Normally I wouldn’t recommend rock and rap to go together but the Beastie Boys made an insane combination.


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I'll vote yes and no on this one

"Yes" to the I am Ozzy book, because while I think his music is good but not great, I think that his life is really quite fascinating. And the benefit of reading his words rather than hearing them ... well, it's nice not needing to have a translator, let me put it that way. This book was very engaging, telling lots of powerful stories about Ozzy's troubled life as a young man, his relationships with his bandmates including Randy Rhoads, and his unique family dynamic. And I'm afraid that my "no" vote is because the Beastie Boys make my head ache, pure and simple.

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