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March 4, 2007


The San Jose Mercury News interviews comedian Patton Oswalt.

Q You guys are performing as part of the Noise Pop festival at the Independent. How important is it for you to be able to plug into that world rather than play at a chain of Improvs?

A You get people that will really become fans and really follow you, because they have more of a music (fan) mentality. They want to watch someone grow and develop rather than (see) someone just totally out of context.

Comedy clubs are designed for you to come out. It doesn't really matter who's here. You go see comedy. You go buy drinks. Marian Bamford said it best: It's like a group drinking song, a lot of these comedy clubs.

The Boston Globe interviews author Jonathan Lethem.

IDEAS: Do you approve of plagiarism, in part, because you feel it is a form of memory, it preserves?

LETHEM: Exactly! Who would be reading Confederate poet Henry Timrod's lyrics if Bob Dylan had not appropriated them for his album "Modern Times"?

Iggy Pop talks to the New York Daily News.

"Only now in my life do I have everything I wanted when I was an adolescent," Pop explains. "Cool cars, hot sex, a really good band that people actually enjoy, proper gigs. And I don't wake up feeling ill."

The Arcade Fire's Win Butler talks songwriting with the Chicago Sun-Times.

"I just think most writers tend to have some sort of lyrical world: They use a lot of similar images and words in songs, not as an intentional thing, but just as ideas they keep coming back to," Butler said. "A lot of times songs in the same period of time will be dealing with similar ideas and try to get at them from a different angle. I tend to not write things down too much, in terms of lyrics or melodies, so if I'm singing something in the shower and I remember it two weeks later, it's usually a sign that it's good."

Members of the band also talk to the Toronto Sun (which also features a review of the band's Neon Bible album).

"There's so much emphasis on the sophomore album and all that kind of s--t," said Gara. "It's weird. We really did the whole album without thinking about any of that, and it's sort of a blessing and a curse. Like we're the most blessed bunch of people where we're in a position that people will relate to the record, hopefully, without us having to push it, you know what I mean? We really just disappeared for a year and shut the door to everyone and just did a record and tweaked it until we were totally happy with it."

The New York Times also profiles the band.

The Sunday Mail lists actors who have attempted to start a music career.

The Contra Costa Times examines band names that are "bizarre, funny, horrible."

Nikki Monninger of the Silversun Pickups talks to the Denver Post.

One of the curiosities of "Lazy Eye" and "Kissing Families" hitting as they have is that the two songs are among the band's oldest. They have been working those songs for more than five years - something that has its upsides.

"It's nice to be able to work on a song for years and then finally have it the way it should organically be," Monninger said, "as opposed to recording it really quickly right after you've written it."

The finalists for the 19th annual Lambda Literary Awards have been named, including Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel, Queen of the Oddballs by Hilary Carlip, Rose of No Man's Land by Michelle Tea, and Origami Striptease by Peggy Munson.

The Seattle Times interviews neurosurgeon-turned-author Allen Wyler.

Q: OK, here's the big question: Brain surgery or fiction writing, which is harder?

A: Oh, man, they're so opposite. I would say that brain surgery has an inherent degree of stress to it. Writing has its frustrations, but the stress of having somebody's life in your hands — the only job I can think of similar to that is air-traffic controller or something. Not to mention the time factor — if you're a month late with a book manuscript, it's no big deal. Not so with surgery!

Yo La Tengo's Ira Kaplan talks to the Age.

"One of the things about being a couple in the band is that we are nicer to each other, and even to James, than we might be if there was not a couple in the band," Kaplan says. "There's sensitivity in every direction, because there's so much caring at the core of the band."

The Independent examines the book sector's biggest boom sector, "mis lit" (misery literature).

The misery market is a key factor in the paperback world's new battleground, the supermarket shelves, with most of the sales going through stores such as Asda. However, bookshops are aware of the power of the genre, with Waterstone's installing a "painful lives" section and Borders establishing a "real lives" category.

Chris Gore lists "sweet 16 basketball movies."

see also:

this week's CD & DVD releases


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