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January 1, 2007


Comic Book Commentary argues that Stagger Lee, by Derek McCulloch and Shepherd Hendrix, could be the best graphic novel of the year.

Injecting several key fictional characters into the tale, McCulloch crafts a compelling take on the truth behind the legend -- equal parts courtroom drama, love story, and social commentary -- that deftly weaves together the corrupt political dealings of late-19th century St. Louis and the personal interactions of a handful of its negro citizens whose lives are touched by Lee Shelton's crime in various ways.

Newsday lists its favorite books of 2006.

Harp interviews singer-songwriter Damien Jurado.

HARP: And Now That I’m In Your Shadow doesn’t have any of the up-tempo rock songs that crop up on your other albums.

I’ve pretty much given up on—I’m not saying for future records but for this one—I pretty much tossed the pop factor out and basically wanted to write songs that I wanted to write, which were more story-based, heavy songs versus just writing a pop song for the sake of writing a pop song so the radio might play it or whatever.

BBC News revisits the ten musical acts they predicted would break big in 2006.

Comic Book Resources looks ahead to 2007 in comics.

Singer-songwriter Nellie McKay talks to New York magazine.

“As a kid, everything about me was weird,” she explains over fruit salad (McKay’s been vegetarian since age 8) at a nearby café. “I was always imitating Ann Sheridan, wearing a little military cap, or Rosalind Russell in Take a Letter, Darling. I read biographies of Dietrich, Hepburn, Garbo—all of them. Of course, nobody at school understood. Nobody even knows who Rita Hayworth is anymore. Are they nuts?”

The New York Times examines the world of literary cruises.

“It’s become increasingly difficult to create and build a book and make it successful,” says Keith Fox, president of McGraw-Hill Professional, the division of the McGraw-Hill Companies that published Ms. Khalfani’s financial advice book. Literary cruises, he said, are “an opportunity for us to get our authors in front of a demographic that loves books.”

The Los Angeles Times covers the rival music critic polls from the Village Voice and Idolator.

Voice music editor Rob Harvilla said Sunday that he doesn't know how many Pazz & Jop ballots have come in because he's just back from vacation

"I don't really have any problem with them," he said of Idolator. "I don't really think this rises to the level of a feud.... I can't say it was unexpected. I took the job and I had an idea it would be rough for a while, but I think it's gone as well as it could be expected to go.... Generally speaking, people are willing to give us a shot here. I see this as about proving ourselves and showing that we can keep this thing running."

WFMU's Beware of the Blog lists the "top ten Orwellian moments of 2006."

see also:

Largehearted Boy's favorite albums of 2006
2006 Year-end Music List Compilation
this week's CD & DVD releases


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