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August 5, 2006


In the New York Times Sunday Book Review, Joe Queenan elaborates on his habit of constantly starting to read new books.

Most of my female friends read one or two books at a time; my male friends insist that they are always reading at least one, though I suspect this figure may be aspirational. But I am never reading fewer than 25 books. I am not talking about books I have delved into, perused and set aside, like “Finnegans Wake” or Pamela Anderson’s first novel — that would get me up way over a hundred. I am talking about books I am actively reading, books that are on my nightstand and are not leaving there until I am done with them. Right now, the number is 27.

The Globe and Mail examines the differences between male and female readers.

“Women read more, they read more novels, they read earlier and they read later. Sixty-five to 70 per cent of the [Canadian] book market is women,” observes Brad Martin, president of Random House of Canada, adding that the American and European markets are probably similar. “How many men do you know who are in a book group?"

Chicago Tribune music critic Greg Kot reviews day one of Lollapalooza, hour by hour.

8:05 p.m.: Carrie Brownstein reminisces about visiting Chicago during her childhood summers. It's the closest Sleater-Kinney comes to getting nostalgic during its set. "Jumpers" fires wave after wave of guitar mayhem at the crowd, "What's Mine is Yours" opens in a storm of feedback and then morphs into a rampaging boogie, and Weiss' harmonica brings a wistful beauty to "Modern Girl."

The Chicago Daily Herald and Peoria Journal Star also review day one.

Slate eulogizes Sleater-Kinney.

S-K defied girl-band pigeonholing by making each album more musically and lyrically complex, winning over critics and fans alike. They got legitimately famous—going from feminist icons to rock icons—and played stadiums as the opening act for Pearl Jam. Even so, they resisted the lure of major labels, recording for the indie labels Kill Rock Stars and Sub Pop until the very end. They played all-ages shows and countless political fund-raisers, and they asked girlcentric bands they liked to tour with them. They retained control.

Singer-songwriter Dan Zanes lists his favorite children's albums for the Washington Post.

At, the Long Winters' John Roderick confesses to being a huge Star Wars fan.

"It'd be nice to have Leia in our band," Roderick smiles. "A scrappy Rebel princess? Heck yes! As for the Long Winters blending in to the Star Wars galaxy, I'd have to say that most of my band would be sitting at the bar in Mos Eisley. I, on the other hand, would be a most-feared bounty hunter."

Chicagoist interviews Chin Up Chin Up.

C: In reviews, everyone wants to call you a math rock band. How do you feel about that label being placed on you?

Cu Cu: I think it’s because we all come from that. We’ve all played in “mathier” sounding bands, but that was so long ago.
I think people equate it with Chicago as well.
Yeah, and we have a lot of parts to our songs, but we mostly play straight-ahead 4/4 … I don’t know.

Jon Pareles is keeping a Lollapalooza journal for the New York Times.

Chartattack lists twelve reasons Arthur Lee was cool.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch interviews Daniel Woodrell, author of the recently published Winter's Bone.

Q: Stories or reviews often have lots of praise but also comments about how little known you are. Do you consider yourself a cult figure?

A: Well, I'll take that over anonymous (laughs). I think it might be changing with this book a little bit. It's already out in England, and the Guardian and Observer both (reviewed) it in July. I'm hoping that suggests I'm coming up on the radar a little more. But I'm realistic enough to know that the kind of thing I write is difficult to sell in huge quantities.

Engadget previews Travelodge's fancy portable "hotel room in a tent," the Travelpod.

The Travelpod will be offered at various concerts and festivals in the UK next year, and if catching a good night's rest just doesn't happen while you're flat on the ground, you can shack up in style for £26 per night.

Singer-songwriter M Ward has signed to 4AD.

The Denver Post gets musicians' input on playong new songs versus hits live at their shows.

"If you refuse to play the music your fans really want to hear, you may just be a spoiled, thankless (expletive)." - Dave Doughman, Swearing at Motorists

"If you play a set that delivers the goods, no one is going to remember the song you didn't play." - Tony Cavallario, Aloha


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