Long Train Runnin’: Our Story Of The Doobie Brothers – Book Review

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Right from the mouths of Tom Johnston and Pat Simmons, with noted co-writer Chris Epting, we get all we ever need to know about the fabulous American music institution, the Doobie Brothers, in Long Train Runnin’: Our Story Of The Doobie Brothers. Here is the ultimate band biography written by the two men most responsible for the creation of the Doobie Brothers and their iconic reign.

What’s so cool about the back-and-forth reminiscences from Johnston and Simmons, as this book mostly is, is how one gets pretty much every juicy morsel of their lives before the Doobies,  how they worked toward forming the band and keep it going. You have to appreciate the honest way they reveal what they felt pretty much every step of the way as the band endured personal and stylistic changes. I especially like Johnston’s detailed rundown of the albums, relating track details only he and Simmons could ever know but that Doobie fans surely will salivate over.

To be sure, not only do Simmons and Johnston weigh in here. Their on-again, off-again band mate Michael McDonald gives forth his thoughts on what it was like coming into the band and enjoying such phenomenal success with them. Other members, band crew personnel and long-time Doobie producer Ted Templeman also weigh in.

The Doobie Brothers have enjoyed an unprecedented career, surviving through ups and downs, ins and outs, and breakups and reformations to be still out there today. Long Train Runnin’: Our Story Of The Doobie Brothers clues you into how they made it (mainly through hard work) and what they thought and felt along the way. All told, it’s been quite a ride.

~ Ralph Greco, Jr.

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