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November 4, 2007


The South Florida Sun-Sentinel previews this week's Miami Book Fair.

The Florence Times Daily reports that a local radio station is devoted to playing only music recorded in Muscle Shoals, Alabama.

The unique broadcast format is the brainchild of Brian Rickman, regional director of programming, a lifelong fan of Muscle Shoals music. He wants fans to hear the classic music he loves, but also wants listeners to hear the new sounds of Muscle Shoals - bands and artists like the Sons of Roswell, the Drive-By Truckers, Jason Isbell, John Paul White and Gary Nichols. Muscle Shoals, you see, is far from being a memory.

KC Groves of Uncle Earl discusses the origins of the band's name with the Scotsman.

"We just thought it would be a funny name for an all-women's group," explains founder KC Groves from her home in Colorado. "But we are fans of Earl Scruggs, Steve Earle and Uncle Tupelo. It did come up in our discussion that there are some important Earls in this business. And uncles too."

In the New York Times, Christopher Hitchens reviews John Updike's new collection of essays and criticism, Due Considerations.

I am myself familiar with the reviewing cliché, from both ends of the business, so I say deliberately that Updike’s scope is rather breathtaking (from Isaac Babel straight to James Thurber on successive pages), and I add that he seems almost incapable of writing badly.

The Observer examines the financial effects of "download dads"on the digital music industry.

So the generation driving the legitimate online music revolution is 'a lot older than you would think,' says Ben Drury, managing director of Most users fall into the 25-to-34 age bracket, then 35-to-44, with the under-24s in third place, he says. 'Younger people are much more likely to download illegally - they're cash-sensitive, price-sensitive, more technically able and maybe have more time to search the peer-to-peer services.'

Filmmaker and author Miranda July talks to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel about learning to write short fiction.

July wasn't daunted, but she proceeded slowly. In 2000 she began work on stories, thinking, she says, "I could learn how to write through doing these other things that were a lot more ambiguous."

The Times profiles singer-songwriter Patrick Wolf, and lists five other musical "boys to keep your eye on."

Book designer (and novelist) Chip Kidd talks to the Telegraph.

Jurassic Park would absolutely have sold a similar amount, whether it had my cover on or not,' he says. 'I'm very much against the idea that the cover will sell the book. Marketing departments of publishing houses tend to latch onto this concept and they can't let go. But it's about whether the book itself really connects with the public, and the cover is only a small part of that.'

Singer-songwriter Bob Schneider talks to the Arizona Republic.

As he says, "When I think of singer-songwriters, I think of a genre that to me is very limited and a little bit earnest and folkish; but there are lots of guys out there doing some interesting things. I think it's like anything. With any genre most of it is pretty pedestrian. Ninety-five percent of any genre is gonna be pretty much marginal, pedestrian fare. And maybe 4.5 percent is good. And then .1 percent is just exceptionally great."

He cites John Vanderslice as one example of a singer-songwriter who'd fall into that last group.

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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