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Book Of The Week #1, The Joke That We Play On The World

The Joke That We Play On The World
by Joshua S. Porter
The Joke That We Play On The World is a memoir that spans over ten years of the band Showbread. It's written by the band's very own front man, Joshua S. Porter, aka- Josh Dies.
The book tells of the bands formation in 1997, how they got their name and the wild antics that follow, including playing at youth group functions in their area, getting signed to a major record label and numerous lineup changes as well as style changes.
Showbread has been my favorite band since I was twelve-years-old. I've loved them ever since my first viewing of the music video, Oh! Emetophobia! They're so unique and such great people. They're definitely the best band I've ever seen live, not just for their performance, but because they're just such nice people to be around.
 It's true that much of the content of their DVD How Showbread Ruined My Life is similar to that in The Joke That We Play On The World, but I feel that in the book you get a much more in depth look into the history of the band. You also get a look into the life of Josh, his view on growing up in a small southern town, leaving the church he grew up in, theological ideals and how he met his wife, Abi. But the focus is still primarily on the band. You see them go from being a group of teenagers playing in local churches to touring the country and landing a deal with one of the largest Christian record labels with an album that releases to decent success, to releasing a totally different album (Age Of Reptiles, which is one of favorite CD's of all time), losing over half of their fan base, plus years more of touring and recording and eventually reaching the point where they give their albums away for free.
This book is hilarious. I found myself laughing out loud several times. It's also quite different from your typical "rock-bio." No booze, pills or sex (praise the Lord!). It's a very refreshing read. This is something I pick up when I just can't figure out what I want to read or if I'm sad, because it's an instant pick-me-up.
If you're not a fan of Showbread, you probably won't like this. But, if you are, you will love it. I read it at least once a year and never tire of it.
I give this book a 5 out of 5

(Showbread and I in the spring of 2011)

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