Minneapolis rock legend Mark Mallman woke at 3 a.m. with a crushing panic attack that wouldn’t end. He responded by pouring songs into a happiness playlist and leaning on the wisdom of friends. This is the true story of a man beset by grief, healed by music, and learning to laugh through it all.
Mark Mallman is a songwriter, composer, and performer from Minneapolis. He has recorded eight albums and his music has been enjoyed by audiences worldwide. His non-stop, non-sleep, “Marathon III” performance stretched 78 hours and included 576 pages of rhyming lyrics. Mallman’s album “The End is Not The End” is a deliberate meditation on overcoming the roots of despair. He was born in Milwaukee.
“Mark Mallman is legitimately original, exclusively motivated by a desire to conquer the strange obstructions he builds inside his mind."— Chuck Klosterman, author of Fargo Rock City: A Heavy Metal Odyssey in Rural North Dakota.
“This brave and masterfully written book is a testament to the power of love and art. Read it and become obsessed.” — Diablo Cody, Academy Award-winning screenwriter of Juno and creator of United States of Tara.
“The Happiness Playlist is funny, thought-provoking, and just plain helpful. It’s the best book on grief that I’ve ever picked up. The examination of music-listening as a method to combat heartbreak is a joy to read. You need it.” — Craig Finn, frontman of the critically acclaimed band The Hold Steady.
“The Happiness Playlist will inspire others to see music as a healing balm. The prose is fueled by short, declarative sentences and a narrative willingness to be emotionally vulnerable. It is often funny and bittersweet.” — Camille-Yvette Welsch, in a four-star Clarion review.
“Mallman’s writing style is direct, clipped and staccato; his words are vivid bursts of observation, often hypnotic. The Happiness Playlist is a life-affirming and thoroughly enjoyable read.” — BlueInk Review.
"Observing Mallman fighting grief feels like watching a fishing bobber battling a strong current. This book should offer solace to anyone grappling with a similar situation." — Kirkus Reviews
"At its best, Mallman's style is reminiscent of Kerouac and Hemingway. He uses music to heal his wounds, but that summation is only part of it, and doesn’t do the book the justice to which it’s entitled. Mallman also leans on his 'tribe'—friends and fellow artists, girlfriends and colleagues, his father—as well as his own creativity and his tremendous ability to look with humor and detachment on his frozen environment and the healing possibilities in his own head. The result is an uplifting memoir that earns its wings honestly, with humor and perception." — Dave Eisenstark in IndieReader.