Daisy Jones & The Six Discussion

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The questions are from the book and you can read my full review of Daisy Jones & The Six here.

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This book is written in an oral history format. Why do you think the author chose to structure the book this way? How does this approach affect your reading experience?

In my view, the author chose this format to write Daisy Jones & The Six so that the reader can read the whole story from a relatively unbiased viewpoint. The reader is reading everybody’s experiences from an outsider’s viewpoint and that way they can see everything that goes down without having any bias in the form of familial or friendship ties to the characters.

Also, the oral history format allows the author, Taylor Jenkins Reid, to explore the story more and allows the characters to be more fluid and dynamic in how the overall story is presented as well as allowing the readers to feel more connected and close to not only the story but also the characters.

Other narrative structures in my view would not allow such intimacy whilst also providing the distance needed between the reader and the story such as the oral history format used in Daisy Jones & The Six.

This narrative structure is probably the only way the author could authentically write a story with so many characters and individual voices without the book becoming overwhelming.

My reading experience for Daisy Jones & The Six was honestly very much like watching a documentary except for the fact that I was not watching a documentary but instead just imagining how everything would be.

And its just incredible how Taylor Jenkins Reid manages to pull that off which goes to the incredible writing talent she has.

At one point Daisy says, “I was supposed to be the inspiration for some man’s great idea…. I had absolutely no interest in being somebody else’s muse.” How does her experience of being used by others contribute to the decisions she makes when she joins The Six?

Daisy’s experience at being used by different men in her life and them not giving her the proper credit she deserves makes her a tough cookie to crack as well as making her be more proactive in what she wants.

These experiences makes Daisy know what she wants, how she is going to get it and when to know when to put her foot down and be adamant about it.

This doesn’t mean that Daisy is not open to criticisms or outside help, it just makes her be less of a pushover and be more confident in herself and her talent over time.

Why do you think Billy has such a strong need to control the group, both early on when they are simply the Dunne Brothers and later when they become Daisy Jones & The Six?

I think this is mainly because Billy is a perfectionist who wants his art to be exactly how he envisions it to be and that’s hard to do when you allow other people to have even the slightest control of what your art.

Perhaps it also stems from the absence of his father in his life making his art and his music an even more integral piece to what makes Billly Dunne… Billy Dunne. I could also be projecting this theory of mine onto him, who knows.

There are two sets of brothers in The Six: Eddie and Pete Loving, and Billy and Graham Dunne. How do these siblings relationship affect the band?

The sibling relationship affected the band in different ways. With Eddie and Pete, I highly doubt Eddie would stay in The Six when Pete leaves due to the fact that Eddie cannot stand Billy. The only reason he managed to stay as long and tolerate Billy as long as he did was because he had Pete to talk him down and give him a reality check that this rock n’ roll lifestyle won’t last forever.

Billy and Graham on the other hand had a completely different sibling dynamic where Graham was the loyal follower and Billy being the leader. If Graham decided to leave The Six and Billy didn’t have his addiction issues, Billy would most definitely continue making music via his band with or without Graham.

In my eyes, Graham to Billy was a loyal cheerleader. A person that’s nice to have around but not necessarily and integral part to keep the show going.

Daisy, Camila, Simone, and Karen are each very different embodiments of female strength and creativity. Who are you most drawn to and why?

I am definitely more drawn to Camila the most because I have mad respect for her and for her life choices. It takes a lot of guts to make a decision and to stick by it come hell or highwater yet also realizing your worth.

I am obviously talking about her relationship with Billy. Any other woman would have either left Billy or stayed BUT continued to resent and hold his past mistakes over his head but not Camila.

She chose the high road. She gave him an ultimatum and decided to take that leap of faith in trusting Billy and moved on from his past betrayal. Not only that I really admired how she handled herself when dealing with Daisy’s immaturity and volatile nature as well as how she was a good friend for Karen when Karen went through hardship.

Camila is an overall Queen honestly. I like how she does complain about being tired from handling the kids and dealing with Billy not being around a lot but she also realizes this is her choice and how she is living her dream of being a mom and having a family with the man she loves.

I also like Karen and her drive and motivation to pursue her career and her art especially back in the 70s when women were not taken seriously and you have to sacrifice a lot to be taken as seriously as men.

With Karen, you see a different embodiment of female strength as she is the opposite of Camila. Karen doesn’t want a family and is adamant about it. It is not a phase for her and that is true for some women whereby having a family just isn’t for them.

Forcing them to pursue a family oriented life would in all honesty kill them and that would lead to more issues especially if she can’t be a good mother to her children. That sucks if you’re the kid and you realize your mother doesn’t love you. Talk about generational trauma.

Billy and Daisy become polarizing figures for the band. Who in the book gravitates more towards Billy’s leadership, and who is more inclined to follow Daisy’s way of doing things? How do these alliances change over time, and how does this dynamic upset the group’s balance?

I can’t remember exactly who gravitated more towards whom but I know that the band members prefer Daisy’s openness to listen to their input and is willing to just try anything as opposed to Billy but in my opinion, all of them except for Eddie at the end of the day would rely more on Billy’s work ethic.

Billy can be a pain in the ass but he is a reliable pain in the ass whereas Daisy is not and when you’re trying to build a business even if the business is rock n’ roll, you need to be dependable and reliable.

Why do you think Billy and Daisy clash so strongly? What misunderstandings between them are revealed through the “author’s” investigation?

They probably clashed so much because they are so much alike and it’s both equally jarring and fulfilling to meet someone who is so much like you.

Jarring because in your head you don’t think of yourself as an asshole but when you meet someone who is incredibly similar and you hate their attitude, you start to reflect on whether you have acted that way unknowingly.

The misunderstandings between them can be solved if they had actually communicated like adults instead of winning gold in the jumping to conclusions section of the Olympics. I am so surprised Billy and Daisy haven’t broken their backs from the sheer weight of carrying their gigantic egos.

What do you think of Camila’s decision to stand by Billy, despite the ways that he has hurt her through his trouble with addiction and wavering faithfulness? How would you describe their relationship? How does it differ from Billy and Daisy’s relationship?

Camila met Billy when he had absolutely nothing. She met him before the rock n’ roll, the fame and most importantly, the drugs. She met him at his most authentic self and she knew deep down that man was still in there somewhere and from reading about her character, Camila is not one to give up the fight easily.

I gotta give her respect because girl knew what she wanted and she was going to fight for it come hell or high water.

She gave Billy and ultimatum of get your shit together or I will leave you and Camila is the type to stick to her word and thank God Billy never let her down again because if he did he knows Camila will leave and NEVER look back.

Camila’s relationship with Billy, I would classify as mature as opposed to Daisy and Billy which is on the other hand of being immature.

Camila like I said, knows what she wants and how she is going to get it and due to that she knows how to plan for her future. She is organized and smart and is communicates clearly to whomever she speaks of her wants and needs whereas Daisy as talented as she is, doesn’t have a clue on how to get what she wants.

She knows what she wants but how to get it is a different story and because she is such a free spirit that causes her to be so easily influenced by the drugs and people that want to take advantage of her.

Camila says about Daisy and Billy, ” The two of you think you’re lost souls, but you’re what everybody is looking for.” What does she mean by this?

To be honest, I have no idea actually.

As you read the lyrics to Aurora, are there any songs or passages that lead you to believe Daisy or Billy was intimating things within their work that they wouldn’t admit to each other or themselves?

Most definitely! It is easier to be honest when you take yourself out of the story and you frame it from the POV of someone else that way you take away your responsibility and accountability.

I mean it’s kinda hard to admit not only to other people but especially to yourself that you’re in love with your colleague especially when you have a family back home waiting for you.

What do you think of Karen’s decision about her pregnancy and Graham’s reaction to the news? What part do gender roles play in their situation?

My first reaction was damn ya’ll don’t use contraception??? Was condoms not a thing in the 70’s???? Seriously guys! THIS IS NOT ROCKET SCIENCE! IF YOU HAVE UNPROTECTED SEX YOU WILL HAVE A BABY!

Yeah I am totally judging and hate me all you want but you know I am right. Graham and Karen aren’t teenagers anymore. They’re adults!

Anyways, back to the question.

Karen is fully entitled to do what she wants with her body with or without Graham’s input BUT she should have really sat down with Graham and talked things through with him and Graham shouldn’t be forcing Karen to do or be something she never wanted to be.

Basically, they needed to communicate because what’s happening is traumatic for both of them. And this serves as a lesson for people who want to get into a relationship WITH ANYBODY. You need to COMMUNICATE over what you want be it talks about finances, family planning, culture if you’re from different cultures, food dislikes and likes and many many more.

Literally, communicate about EVERYTHING. So, both of you are on not only on the same page but also the same paragraph reading the same word at the same time.

Talking about gender roles, I wouldn’t say Graham is misogynistic. I would classify him as being ignorant. Ignorant on how not all women want the family-oriented life; the white picket fence, the kids, and the dogs and what have you.

Like, it never registered with him to quit his own music career to raise their child. In his mind, it’s natural that it would be Karen to sacrifice her career to have a family and him blowing up on Karen was not cool.

I understand that he too felt lost and confused especially when he was so excited to start a family with Karen but she didn’t feel the same way and that probably hurt a lot to have the woman you love not reciprocate your feelings as you had hoped.

At the end of the day pregnancy and abortion is a difficult topic no matter what you choose, somebody’s gotta give up something and the pain and burden can only be lessened when you talk to someone about it.

Were you surprised to discover who the “author” was? How did you react to learning the “authors” reason for writing this book?

Not really no because I kind of spoiled the book for myself hahahah

What role does the reliability of memory play in the novel? Were there instances in which you believed one person’s account of an event more than another’s? What does the “author” mean when she states at the beginning, “The truth often lies, unclaimed, in the middle”?

Reliability plays a very important role because the same situation can be remembered very differently by different people. The best examples is how Billy remembers Eddie and vice versa.

From Billy’s POV, he didn’t do anything wrong. He was just doing what’s best for the band and what’s best for the audience during the tour but from Eddie’s POV, all he remembers is the disrespect that Billy had for him. Obviously, there are more situations than this.

Same goes with Billy and Daisy. From Daisy’s POV, she just sees Billy as being disappointed in her and not wanting to be near her because he hates her when we read Billy’s interviews, he just wants to get away from all the drugs and booze not because he looks down at people enjoying them but because he knows he isn’t strong enough to withstand the temptation for very long.

Reliability when it comes to human memory is so fickle and ironically so unreliable because nobody wants to remember themselves as being or acting shitty. Everybody wants to be a hero in their own mind and very rarely a person acknowledges the full scope of their actions.

What did you think of the songs written by Daisy Jones & the Six? How did you imagine they would sound?

No opinions on this sadly. But I did imagine it sounding more of Queen, a dash Bee Gees and maybe Metallica vibe not that Metallica existed back in the 70s.

If you are old enough to have your own memories of the 1970’s, do you feel the author captured that time period well? If you didn’t experience the seventies yourself, what did this fictional depiction of the time evoke for you?

I don’t know actually because what I imagine in my mind is what I see on TV and what I have read so it’s a weird mashup of old Hollywood mixed in with what was shown in TV of what the 70s looked like.

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