When I read earlier today about the death of the great Nick Tosches, I decided right away to re-read (for the second time) “Dino: Living High in the Dirty Business of Dreams,” which I regard as the greatest 20th Century showbiz biography ever written.

And then I’ll re-read “Hellfire: The Jerry Lee Lewis Story,” for which Greil Marcus wrote a forward essay. And then I’ll buy a Kindle version of “The Last Opium Den,” which Tosches originally wrote as a Vanity Fair piece.

I don’t know why Nick died at the relatively young or at least unwithered age of 69, but he apparently smoked most of his life.

Consider the following passage from “Opium Den”…the patois, the flavoring and especially the candor.