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September 30, 2008


Barack Brooklyn Fundraiser 10/7

On October 7th, the Music Hall of Williamsburg will feature a Barack Obama fundraiser, with all proceeds going to his presidential campaign. Participating musicians Alina Simone, Andrew Bird, the Fiery Furnaces, and more, along with comedian Eugene Mirman and surprise guests. Tickets are on sale now.

The Guardian music blog reports that Caribou has won Canada's Polaris music prize.

Salon interviews Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist director Peter Sollett.

How much of the music represented your own personal choices? I almost leapt out of my seat because you used a Richard Hawley song, and not many people know about him.

These are all right out of my iTunes, basically. A lot of the credit on the music should go to Myron Kerstein, the editor, who also did "Garden State" and "Vargas." He's great with music. And then there's Linda Cohen, the music supervisor. Basically, what I did was I sent Kerstein music that I thought would work for the scenes -- probably five or 10 times too many songs for each scene. And while we were shooting in New York, he was in L.A. assembling the movie and trying these songs on. They were all five-star tracks on my iTunes that seemed to relate to the movie.

Marisa Silver talks to PopMatters about her latest novel, The God of War.

“Although I have read West, Chandler, and Didion over the years, I would hardly call myself an expert on the California novel,” says Silver, who surrendered a career in Hollywood as a successful writer-director to enroll in grad school to become a short story writer. “Perhaps the work of these and other California writers affects me at a subconscious level, although I did not consciously think about other California novels while at work. I am sure that like so many works of fiction, my own fits into certain paradigms. But when I am writing, I try very hard to think only of my characters and the situations I invent for them, to try to be as true to their fictional reality as I can be. I do not step outside the process to think about how my work does or does not fit into any kind of literary lineage. While certain aspects of my novel may seem to respond or, as you note, continue the themes and textures of the Southern California novel, this was certainly not on my mind during the process.”

Wikipedia lists Steve Albini's recording projects.

NPR's Morning Edition profiles Chris Onstad, the cartoonist behind the webcomic Achewood.

MiniTube is a Windows program that searches out the YouTube video of any song you play in Winamp or iTunes.

At, guess a book's reviewer rating by looking at its cover.

T-shirt of the day: "Heavy Metal Saved My Life"

ShelfTalker critiques the Urban Outfitters t-shirts that feature the covers of classic books.

So, here's the reason I'm feeling cranky about Urban Outfitters. While I'm happy that these reading-inspired tees appear in the stores' offerings for men, I find it both odd and irksome that they don't also appear in the selection of "graphic tees" being marketed to women. Does Urban Outfitters believe that hipster girls are less likely than their male counterparts to actually read and enjoy books? Do they think girls don't WANT to announce their own love of literature?

The Independent excerpts from The Best Music You've Never Heard, a new book by Nigel Williamson.

The Guardian's new band of the day is the Canadian music collective Woodpigeon.

Apart from their name, Woodpigeon are an intriguing proposition. They're a sort of semi-acoustic Arcade Fire or a full-band version of Sufjan Stevens. Their lushly orchestrated folk-pop, featuring wispy boy-girl harmonies, posits them as a cross between Prefab Sprout and Fairport Convention. Some of their songs are simple and unadorned while others are more ornate and complex. Mostly, they specialise in twinkling melodies that feature layered arrangements and build to epic climaxes.

Celebrate Banned Books Week by reading a banned book.

Philip Pullman discusses book banning in the Guardian.

In fact, when it comes to banning books, religion is the worst reason of the lot. Religion, uncontaminated by power, can be the source of a great deal of private solace, artistic inspiration, and moral wisdom. But when it gets its hands on the levers of political or social authority, it goes rotten very quickly indeed. The rank stench of oppression wafts from every authoritarian church, chapel, temple, mosque, or synagogue – from every place of worship where the priests have the power to meddle in the social and intellectual lives of their flocks, from every presidential palace or prime ministerial office where civil leaders have to pander to religious ones.

Minnesota Public Radio's The Current features Mates of State with an interview and in-studio performance.

The Comics Reporter lists 50 things every comic collection needs.

NPR is streaming Bob Dylan's new album, Tell Tale Signs:The Bootleg Series Vol. 8.

The Futurist shares a couple of in-studio mp3s from the French Kicks' recent QWOXY Lounge Act performance.

also at Largehearted Boy:

daily mp3 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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