Beautiful Scars

Beautiful Scars

Steeltown Secrets, Mohawk Skywalkers and the Road Home

Book - 2017
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"Tom Wilson was raised in the rough-and-tumble world of Hamilton - Steeltown - in the company of World War II vets, factory workers, fall-guy wrestlers and the deeply guarded secrets kept by his parents, Bunny and George. For decades Tom carved out a life for himself in shadows. He built an international music career and became a father, he battled demons and addiction, and he waited, hoping for the lies to cease and the truth to emerge. It would. And when it did, it would sweep up the St. Lawrence River to the Mohawk reserves of Quebec, on to the heights of the Manhattan skyline. With a rare gift for storytelling and an astonishing story to tell, Tom writes about his search for the truth. It's a story about scars, about the ones that hurt us, and the ones that make us who we are. From Beautiful Scars: 'Even as a kid my existence as the son of Bunny and George Wilson seemed far-fetched to me. When I went over it in my head, none of it added up. The other kids on East 36th Street in Hamilton used to tell me stories of their mothers being pregnant and their newborn siblings coming home from the hospital. Nobody ever talked about Bunny's and my return from the hospital. In my mind my birth was like the nativity, only with gnarly dogs and dirty snow and a chipped picket fence and old blind people with short tempers and dim lights, ashtrays full of Export Plain cigarette butts and bottles of rum. Once, when I was about four, I asked Bunny, "How come I don't look anything like you and George? How come you are old and the other moms are young?" "There are secrets I know about you that I'll take to my grave," she responded. And that pretty well finished that. Bunny built up a wall to protect her secrets, and as a result I built a wall to protect myself. Canadian musician Tom Wilson has written for and recorded songs with Sarah McLachlan, City and Colour, Jason Isbell, Colin James, Lucinda Williams, Billy Ray Cyrus, Mavis Staples and The Rankin Family. He lives in Hamilton, Ontario."--Provided by publisher.
"Thomas Cunningham "Tom" Wilson is a veteran of the Canadian music scene, a songwriter and performer for many years. Wilson's eclectic musical style has ranged from the psychobilly / R&B sounds of the Florida Razors, to the western/roots style of Blackie and the Rodeo Kings and the funk/blues inspired rock of Junkhouse. His most recent project is Lee Harvey Osmond, which is a collaborative effort with members of Cowboy Junkies and Skydiggers. In 2001 Wilson released a solo album, Planet Love, which featured the hit Dig It"--From website.
Publisher: Toronto, Ont. : Doubleday Canada, 2017
Branch Call Number: 362.734092 W753b
Characteristics: 229 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm


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Jun 01, 2018

I just LOVED reading this biography from cover to cover!

May 31, 2018

I found this to be an entertaining read but a realistic biography. I enjoyed the talk about Hamilton and it was wonderful to join him as he discovered his Aboriginal heritage.

May 27, 2018

Talk about identity confusion. Tom has acquired a lot of hard-earned wisdom about the subject of truth and the energy that is required to perpetuate living a life of lies. Also he is a transparent soul who hit rock bottom and found his way back towards redemption and second chances. Tom is a guy who not only has amazing musical talents (song writing, singing voice, guitar playing), but turns out he's a gifted writer as well. I found his personal story, of finding his roots and fighting addiction, inspiring. I could easily landmark the locations mentioned in the book, being a fellow Hamiltonian.

Apr 18, 2018

A complex story of poverty, family dysfunction, racism, and musical creativity. Not for the squeamish. Many "what if" questions left unanswered.

Jan 03, 2018

A very entertaining and interesting read. It's well written and fast-paced. A life's journey spent discovering and uncovering. Remarkable.

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