Thrilled to be a guest today on the Criminal Minds blog, where I went on for a bit about writing about music – and why the rock scene is the perfect setting for a mystery:

As some wag famously said, “Writing about music is like bicycling about architecture.”   What that wit didn’t say is that it’s also a great opportunity for crime fiction.

The rock and roll subculture of the ‘80s and ‘90s, a world that I came up in as a critic and sometime musician, was rife with criminal opportunities, for sure. There were the sex and drugs long linked with the music, and there was money as well. Not just in the clubs and on the road, where so many transactions – at the bar or the merch table – were handled with cash, but in the industry overall, as a new trending artist could be leveraged for millions and could make or break a career, although the careers that hot young thang made weren’t necessarily hers.

That world has been blown apart, to some extent, by Spotify and other streaming services. But its grimy basements and nonstop tours serve as the setting for Hold Me Down, my new psychological suspense. Hold Me Down opens in the present day, as rocker Gal Raver comes back to Boston to play a memorial for her drummer and best friend, Aimee. At the show, Gal freezes at the sight of a face in the crowd. When that old acquaintance turns up dead and her drummer’s widower is charged, she is drawn into her own informal investigation. She and Aimee had a lot of history, and with Gal’s own memories clouded by years of drugs and drinking, she’s not sure what – or who – to trust. …

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