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April 5, 2008


Yesterday's addition to the list of 2008 SXSW streaming and downloadable music performances:

Audio streams of performances by Harvey Milk, the Homosexuals, Hank IV, Carla Bozulich's Evangelista, Half Japanese, Citay, and the Bad Trips.

A bittorrent download of a N.E.R.D' performance.

The Indianapolis Business Journal examines the effort to appraise Kurt Vonnegut's literary estate.

Pellegrino must estimate the chance Vonnegut’s work will generate unexpected sources of income. Maybe there will be a sudden spike in demand for “Goodbye Blue Monday!” T-shirts. Perhaps Pall Mall will want to roll out a Kilgore Trout cigarette advertising campaign.

The San Francisco Chronicle profiles authors who give their books away as podcasts and/or digital downloads before their print publication.

On Tuesday, Sigler's latest book, "Infected," a tale of biological possession, was released by Crown. A free digital manuscript of the book was downloaded 45,000 times in just 100 hours since the Crown book was released, according to the publisher. And while Sigler still offers his novels as free podcasts, he is confident that the junkies will shell out $24.95 for a fix they might already have tried.

"How do I get them to buy a book they may have already listened to?" Sigler said. "I ask them to."

Billboard examines the music industry repercussions of the shuttering of Harp and No Depression.

The closures of the two magazines might also reflect larger trends for indie labels promoting triple A and alt-country acts. "In the last 18 months, our focus has begun to shift away from print ads and towards online and TV advertising," Biondolillo says. Other labels have sought alternative print publications for advertising: Wittman says that Redeye and Yep Roc's full page ads will now appear in Filter magazine.

Author Michael Chabon talks to the Palm Springs Desert Sun.

"I think I've worked as hard as I can to confound people. I hate being pigeon-holed," he said. "I respect and admire artists who resist pigeon-holing, whether it is David Bowie, Prince or Margaret Atwood.

"I just follow my impulses; it's not like I'm forced to do different things each time," Chabon said. "What I try not to do is say, 'You can't do that,' or 'The editor won't like it.' I don't let myself think those thoughts - I would never do that when picking up a book."

PBS features a video interview with author Salman Rushdie by Bill Moyers.

IGN lists a fantasy soundtrack for the new Iron Man film.

ESPN chooses the top 11 football movie scenes ever.

The Independent profiles several bands made up of teenagers (and pre-teens).

Billboard interviews Motley Crue member, bestselling author, and record label president Nikki Sixx.

You're in two bands, you're a songwriter, an author, you have the clothing line (Royal Underground) and all these other interests. How do you fit in "record label president?"

It's about infrastructure and using that infrastructure to take what it is you're working on and expanding on it. I don't need to be on every single phone call of every single aspect of tour support. At the end, I'll sit down and look at it and we'll figure out as a company what we can do to make sure a band stays on the road and how we can work with radio the best to keep the band in front of people because we believe in the band. The day-to-day stuff, the really grueling, hard, daily stuff, I don't do. It's something I know I'm not good at. I'm not good at sitting in an office. I have an office in my home, I have my weekly updates, and I work with the artists.

NPR's All Things Considered profiles Adam Green.

Green has long taken the stream-of-consciousness approach to writing lyrics, though he's matured considerably from his dark and dirty nursery-rhyme days with The Moldy Peaches. On Sixes & Sevens, he's the king of knock-out couplets, firing them off so fast, it takes repeated listens to hear most of them. Green is like Leonard Cohen with ADD, dashing from one observation to the next — sometimes funny, sometimes profound, and sometimes just obscure.

BusinessWeek examines the music industry's digital future.

The record labels are experimenting online in part because they have to. CD sales declined more than 18% in 2007 from the prior year, according to data from Nielsen SoundScan. Even with sales of digital albums and the like online, overall album sales fell nearly 10% last year. The record labels recognize that they need new revenue streams to succeed. "We are going to have very well developed business models on ad-sponsored discovery, pay-as-you go, a la carte purchases, and paying for access to a catalog of music," says Warner's Nash.

The Globe and Mail's Ingram 2.0 blog examines the blogs and online portals of musicians.

The Brooklyn Rail reviews the Mountain Goats' latest album, Heretic Pride.

The A.V. Club offers a primer to the music of the Rolling Stones.

in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Minnesota bibliophiles name the state's greatest books.

The A.V. Club interviews Jens Lekman.

AVC: Do you mostly approach songwriting as a storyteller?

JL: Sometimes I feel like I'm working on a sitcom or something. I almost see the little studio, and I think of it as a good comedy show or something like that, with the characters lined up, and I'm trying to make the characters come alive somehow. There's a lot of silly stuff happening, but in the end, there's always that feeling of "I've gotta wrap this up with some kind of dignity and a little tear in the eye." At some point, I was thinking of how I wanted to write my own sitcom for TV, especially when I was in Australia the other month. I was watching a lot of daytime TV, and just being very repulsed by what I saw—the stereotyped characters and all that. I'm just waiting for someone on TV to write to me and say, "Hey, let's make a sitcom, you and me."

The A.V. Club interviews Stephen Malkmus.

AVC: How is making an indie-rock record now different from what it was, say, 10 years ago?

SM: Well, 10, it's probably not so different. But 15 years ago, or when we started, obviously [the scene] was smaller. I just got back from England, and with the advent of these groups like Arctic Monkeys, and, I don't know, there are other ones—I can't remember who was on the cover [of NME] this week. But the major youth music is "indie." So I don't know. We just do what we do. I would quantify our sound as more underground than indie, in that it's not catering to a fashion, so much as indie happens to be a fashion now. But the underground lives on regardless. It always does.

Entertainment Weekly's Pop Watch blog has an exclusive excerpt from the Method Man graphic novel (written by the hip hop star himself).

Minnesota Public Radio's The Current features Tapes 'n Tapes with an interview and in-studio performance.

Drowned in Sound chooses five of Neil Young's best albums.

also at Largehearted Boy:

2007 online music lists
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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