elliott smith


angeles, between the bars, clementine, clouds, all my rowdy friends have settled down

book info

book by autumn de wilde

elliott smith's intensely intimate music and open-hearted, beatlesque pop songs have left a deep mark on a generation of fans and musicians in the wake of his tragic death in 2003. in autumn de wilde's remarkable photographs and conversations with close friends, family, and musicians he inspired, this is the first and only portrait of the beloved and troubled singer/songwriter by those who knew him well. complementing de wilde's riveting, personal images are ephemera, handwritten lyrics, and revealing talks with smith's inner circle, many speaking here for the first time. also included are a foreword by beck hansen and chris walla, and a live cd of unreleased solo acoustic performances.

autumn de wilde directed elliott's video for "son of sam" and created the packaging for his album figure 8; the cover image of him in front of a wall in l.a. led to the site becoming a spontaneous memorial for the singer after his death. she has also worked with spoon, death cab for cutie, the raconteurs, the yeah yeah yeahs, jenny lewis, fiona apple, and others. she lives in los Angeles.

beck hansen has collaborated with de wilde for many years, most recently on photographs and videos for his album the information.

chris walla is a guitarist for the band death cab for cutie and has worked as a producer with numerous bands.

press release

elliott smith
by autumn de wilde
foreword by beck hansen and chris walla
224 pages| hardcover | $29.95| isbn 978-0-8118-5799-4
200 color and b&w photographs
5-song cd of previously unreleased material included

“autumn has this divining rod that takes her to the photo. she just has this quiet eye. i’ve seen this in all her photos, that in the end people still look like themselves.” –beck hansen

elliott smith’s intensely personal music has left a deep mark on a generation of fans and musicians. now chronicle books is releasing elliott smith by autumn de wilde, a collection of rare photographs and one-of-a-kind interviews taken, and conducted, by one of smith’s close friends, acclaimed photographer autumn de wilde. de wilde was one of the few photographers with whom smith loved working, and the photos in elliott smith are remarkably intimate and revealing, showing previously unseen sides of his personality. in addition to these startling, beautiful images, the book features conversations with many of smith’s closet confidantes and collaborators—many of whom have never spoken on-record about smith before—as well as musicians who never knew smith but were deeply influenced by his music. also included in the book are personal ephemera, handwritten lyrics, an exclusive cd featuring five songs from small shows in los angeles in 1997 that are all previously unheard, and a foreword by beck hansen and chris walla. a portion of the proceeds from the book will be donated to the sims foundation in austin and the portland-based charity outside in.

autumn de wilde worked closely with smith as a friend and photographer for years, as well as directed the video for his song "son of sam,” and designed the package and cover for his album figure 8. after smith’s death, fans turned the silver lake, california wall used on the cover’s background into a memorial site, leaving notes, flowers, and other items of personal connection.

elliott smith’s three independent solo albums (and earlier work with the band heatmiser) earned him a devoted following that was greatly expanded by the use of his music in the film good will hunting, his nomination for an academy award for his song “miss misery” in 1997, and his next two major-label releases on dreamworks. after his death in 2003, his fan following has only grown and his absence is keenly felt, with the release of two posthumous collections (most recently the double album new moon on kill rock stars) and four tribute albums.

conversations with friends, family, and musicians in the book include:
ben gibbard, matthew caws, neil gust, ashley welch
sam coomes, dorien garry, jon brion, sean croghan
rob schnapf, alyssa siegel, chris walla, mark flanagan
joanna bolme, margaret mittleman

the previously unreleased 5-track cd of smith playing live, solo acoustic at largo in l.a. circa 1997 includes the following songs:
between the bars
clouds (a quasi cover)
all my rowdy friends have settled down (a hank williams, jr. cover)

as a photographer or director, autumn de wilde has worked with beck, death cab for cutie, spoon, the yeah yeah yeahs, the raconteurs, the white stripes, eels, modest mouse, rilo kiley, jenny lewis, miranda july, and many others. she lives in los angeles. she has been documenting the award-winning fashion designers rodarte for the past three years and plans to release a book about their work together. her work has been featured in the pages of vanity fair, the new york times magazine, the los angeles times magazine, elle, res, v, filter, nylon, Teen Vogue, rolling stone, spin, dazed and confused, and zoo, to name a few.

beck hansen has collaborated with autumn de wilde since the early 1990’s, including on the cover for his album sea change; photo shoots for mutations, sea change, and guero; and photographs and videos for the information.

chris walla is a guitarist and producer for death cab for cutie and has worked as a producer with hot hot heat, nada surf, the prom, the decemberists, tegan and sara, and other bands.

a portion of the proceeds of this book will be donated to the sims foundation and outside in.


about chronicle books
one of the most admired and respected publishing companies in the u.s., chronicle books was founded in 1967 and over the years has developed a reputation for award-winning, innovative books. recently recognized as one of the 50 best small companies to work for in the u.s. (and the only independent publisher to receive this award), the company continues to challenge conventional publishing wisdom, setting trends in both subject and format, maintaining a list that includes illustrated titles in design, art, architecture, photography, food, lifestyle and pop culture, as well as much-admired books for children and ancillary products through its gift division. chronicle books’ objective is to create and distribute exceptional publishing that’s instantly recognizable for its spirit, creativity, and value. for more information about chronicle cooks, visit www.chroniclebooks.com.

release date november 2007


a chronicle books release


thanks to christina