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October 14, 2007


Music Sucks interviews Gregg Gillis of Girl Talk.

The Boston Globe interviews mystery writer Robert B. Parker.

Did the TV show Spenser for Hire make you change the way you wrote the books and the character?

I was very clear about all of that. Someone once said to me, "So, why do you sell the rights to your books to Hollywood?" For the money! What other possible reason could there be? It had no effect on me.

In the New York Times, Stephen Colbert writes Maureen Dowd's op-ed column.

I’d like to thank Maureen Dowd for permitting/begging me to write her column today. As I type this, she’s watching from an overstuffed divan, petting her prize Abyssinian and sipping a Dirty Cosmotinijito. Which reminds me: Before I get started, I have to take care of one other bit of business:

Bad things are happening in countries you shouldn’t have to think about. It’s all George Bush’s fault, the vice president is Satan, and God is gay.

There. Now I’ve written Frank Rich’s column too.

The Chicago Sun-Times profiles the Mekons.

More than 25 musicians have floated in and out of the Mekons since the band formed in 1977. One of the punk ideals of the band was that anybody could be a Mekon. Dick Taylor (ex-Rolling Stones, Pretty Things, and not to be confused with Mick Taylor, who joined the Stones years later) played on the 1985 breakthrough "Fear and Whiskey." Founding member Ken Lite returned to contribute lyrics to 2002's "OOOH!" Julie Wood of Paul Cebar and the Milwaukeeans has sat in for Honeyman. Greenhalgh says, "We have had people guest in and out but essentially the band has been pretty much the same since 1991 when Corina joined]."

The Ottawa Citizen examines the "Nobel effect" on book sales for laureates.

Ms. Wachendorff took the 2002 example of Hungarian author Imre Kertesz, who had sold around 12,000 books before winning the prize.

"The Nobel prize had a huge effect -- we sold 50,000 of Etre Sans Destin and about 30,000 copies of some of his other books just after he won," she said.

Author Walter Mosley discusses influential books in the New York Post.

All writers will pick the most impressive choices, he says. “If you're a literary white male, you're going to pick Updike. If you're a young black female, you're going to pick Morrison, when it was really Nancy Drew. So you're setting me up to lie."

Pinback bassist Zach Smith talks to the Chicago Sun-Times about the DIY work ethic.

"We often get described as a 'bedroom band' or a 'home-recording project,' but that's kind of off the mark, if you ask me," Smith says. "What it really is is two guys who have done this together for years, where we've played in bands and went to studios and recorded 10 songs at once over three weeks or a month, and the way we work now is really more of an extension of the do-it-yourself attitude. We were interested in recording ourselves even if it was just two guys in a bedroom who didn't know what they were doing, but thought it was amazing that they could do it anyway."

Author Ian Rankin talks to the Toronto Star about the influence of music on his writing.

The newly published 17th novel to feature the cranky, cynical, hard-drinking, authority-disdaining Edinburgh cop as its central character is not called Exit Music for nothing. The former part of the title has to do with Rebus's retirement from the force – although not necessarily from the pages of fiction. The latter has to do with Rebus's encyclopedic knowledge of popular music of the 1960s and early '70s, from likely suspects the Rolling Stones to more obscure local heroes such as songwriter Jackie Leven who, like Rebus and Rankin, is a native of Fife.

Readers United is another way to swap books online.

Seattlest speculates which bands may reform for the Sub Pop 2008 20th birthday bash next year.

Minnesota Public Radio's The Current features a streaming in-studio performance by Sea Wolf.

Adrian Tomine talks to the Edmonton Journal about his new graphic novel, Shortcomings.

"I've been challenged about ethnicity from day one of my career. I've always had journalists asking me why I wasn't writing about characters of Japanese descent. I always saw this as pretty odd given that I'm a fourth-generation (Japanese)-American and my family has been here longer than many of the critics challenging me on that issue. So many critics, readers and comic-book fans had visions of some story I was holding back."

Buy White Stripes inspired cameras on October 15th.

NPR's All Things Considered interviews Eric Nuzum, author of The Dead Travel Fast: Stalking Vampires from Nosferatu to Count Chocula.

see also: Nuzum's Largehearted Boy Book Notes music playlist for the book

also at Largehearted Boy:

Daily Downloads
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
this week's CD releases


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