Music: The No-Hit Wonder

He's a gifted songwriter who refuses to become famous. Who says Ryan Adams needs to grow up?

The photograph on the coffee table captures a perfect moment of joy. It is a Halloween night in the mid-'80s, and Ryan Adams, 11, is in full Kiss make-up, thrusting out his chin and sticking out his tongue like a tiny Gene Simmons. It's an image worth lingering over because in the here and now--early fall in his East Village apartment in New York City--Adams is doing a fair impression of an 11-year-old brat. We are supposed to be talking about his new album, Rock N Roll, but Adams has decided to chain-smoke and open his mail. "Why does my mom...

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