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Best Patti Smith audiobooks

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Although she is best known for her performing career, Patti has multiple great works as an author. Read more to find out the top 3 Patti Smith audiobooks you must listen to.

Table of Contents

Best Patti Smith audiobooks

Patricia Lee Smith, better known as Patti Smith, has talent across the boards, from singing and performing, to painting, to writing. Although she is best known for her performing career, Patti has multiple great works as an author, including the biography/autobiography Year of the Monkey and the award-winning memoir, Just Kids. Patti’s books are all available as audiobooks that she has narrated herself, and it’s easy to get online or hard copy versions of her works as customizable audiobooks on speechify.

About Patti Smith


Patti Smith is an American singer, songwriter, poet, painter, and author. She was born in 1946 in Chicago and was married to Fred “Sonic” Smith until his death in 1994. Called the “punk poet laureate”, Patti became highly influential in the New York City punk rock movement with her 1975 debut album Horses, one of the most well-known rock and roll albums of all time. Patti had worked in a factory before she began performing spoken word and later formed Patti Smith Group. Outside of her career as a singer and performer, where she recorded twelve albums, Pattie has exhibited her drawings and published multiple books, including M Train, Year of the Monkey, Coral Sea, and National Book Award-winning Just Kids. Patti Smith is known for narrating her own audiobooks as well as Jo Nesbos Blood on Snow.

Genre of writing

Patti Smith’s books are primarily memoirs and biographies/autobiographies.

Brief overview of awards

Patti was nominated for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance Grammy Award in 1998 and 2001, and Best Spoken Word Album Grammy Award in 2016 and 2017. She won the ASCAP Pop Music Awards for Most Performed Son in 1995 for the song Because the Night, and won the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2021 for her album Horses and is in the rock and roll hall of fame.

Top 3 Patti Smith Audiobooks

Patti Smith’s top three books include

Just Kids

M Train

Year of the Monkey

Top Audiobooks Narrated by Patti Smith Herself

Patti Smith’s top audiobooks that she has narrated herself include

Just Kids

M Train

Year of The Monkey

Patti Smith at the Minetta Lane

Just Kids

Publication details

Just Kids was published on January 19, 2010, by Ecco. The audio version is narrated by Patti Smith on amazon and was published by harperaudio.


Patti Smith’s, Just Kids, is a best-selling memoir love story that documents her relationship with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. Patti writes about their complicated relationship from their beginnings in poverty and supporting each other’s dreams and being each other’s inspirations. She writes about her journey of being an artist, poet, and musician coming of age in the late 60s and their journey of becoming part of the music scene in New York at the height of the sixties. Beginning their journey on Coney Island to Forty-Second Street, to the round table of Max’s Kansas, where the Andy Warhol contingent held court. They moved into the Chelsea hotel as they both grow and work towards their goals of making a living through their art forms.

Overall reviews

Just Kids has an overall rating of 4.2 out of 5 stars.

“[Just Kids] reminds us that innocence, utopian ideals, beauty and revolt are enlightenment’s guiding stars in the human journey. Her book recalls, without blinking or faltering, a collective memory ― one that guides us through the present and into the future.” — Michael Stipe, Time magazine

“The most enchantingly evocative memoir of funky-but-chic New York in the late 1960s and early 1970s that any alumnus has yet committed to print.” — Janet Maslin’s top 10 books of 2010, New York Times

M Train

Publication details

M Train was published on October 6, 2015, by Alfred A. Knopf, Random House Audio.


The memoir, M Train, was written and then recorded as an audiobook by Patti herself on audible through amazon and was nominated for Best Spoken Word Album Grammy Award. Based on the later years of her life, the 40 years between when the debut studio album, Horses, was released to when M Train was written, it’s about singular memories of Patti’s life in Detroit Michigan, and the losses she suffered. Like the loss of her husband, Fred Smith, the loss of her brother just a month after, then losing her friend Robert Mapplethorpe. 

Overall Reviews

M Train has an overall rating of 4 out of 5 stars.

“An eloquent—and a deeply moving—elegy for what she has ‘lost and cannot find’ but can remember in words.” —The New York Times

“Begins in a tiny Greenwich Village cafe and ends as a dream requiem to the same place, encompassing an entire lost world. . . . Yet despite all of these losses, there is extraordinary joy here. . . . Readers who share in Smith’s transcendent pilgrimage may find themselves reborn within the pages of this exquisite memoir.” —The Washington Post

Year of the Monkey

Publication details

Year of the Monkey was published on September 24, 2019, by PenguinRandomHouse.


Year of the Monkey is Patti Smith’s latest biography/autobiography. Patti writes about a year of her life of solitary wandering after a run of New Year’s concerts in San Francisco. The surreal lunar year begins in February, bringing unexpected turns, heightened mischief, and sorrow. Writing about this year in her life in a creative process, she goes into depth on life’s changes including loss, aging, and the dramatic shift in the political landscape of America. Patti writes about her wanderings and experiences from Southern California to the Arizona desert, to a farm in Kentucky to help a friend in a crisis, to the hospital room of a valued mentor. Patti offers her wisdom, wit, and hope for a better world as she enters a new decade of her own life. Year of the Monkey is illustrated with Patti’s own polaroids.

Overall Reviews

Year of the Monkey has an overall rating of 3.8 out of 5 stars.

“Moving—an account of physical and intellectual wanderings . . . Smith does not rage against her approaching 70th birthday, nor does she turn away from it. She finds art everywhere, and remains a pioneer, the same rules-shattering poet and National Book Award-winning writer . . . She is, as she writes in Year of the Monkey, ‘still going about my business, that of being alive, the best I can.’” —Jack Cline, The Washington Post

“Deft and enigmatic. . . Life can’t help but confound us; love is enough to sustain us, and loss, if not revocable, can, for the moment, be redeemed. [But] Smith is too smart for easy consolations; she has been through too much . . . She summons this scene, this moment, giving it the weight of a reckoning. Year of the Monkey reminds us that despair and possibility often spring from the same source.” —David L. Ulin, Los Angeles Times

Listen to the best Patti Smith audiobooks with Speechify

How to get Speechify

Speechify is available for both mobile and desktop devices, and getting it on either is simple. For mobile devices, go to the app store and install it. For desktop devices, go to the speechify website and install the web browser extension.

How to turn these books into audiobooks with Speechify

To turn any of Patti Smith’s best works into your own customizable audiobook or podcast, upload the text into speechify, select a voice and playback speed, and press play!

Import hard copies into Speechify and turn them into audiobooks

If you have any of Patti Smith’s best works in a hard copy it’s just as easy to import it and turn it into an audiobook. After scanning the pages onto your desktop or mobile device, press play and have it read to you immediately. 

Aside from her being incredibly well-known for her music, Patti Smith has become known through her memoirs and biographies as she recounts parts of her life and highlights her key relationships, like her relationship with Robert Mapplethorpe in Just Kids. While her books are available in audiobooks on the internet, it’s a simple and easy process to turn any of her works into audiobooks with Speechify. Using Speechify is a great option for those who have Patti’s books in hardcopies or any book on their wishlist that they want to turn into audiobooks.

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