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October 14, 2009

Shorties (Michael Chabon, Sufjan Stevens, and more)

Jacket Copy interviews Michael Chabon about his new essay collection, Manhood for Amateurs.

JC: It's kind of stunning to anyone who's ever tried to write that you and Ayelet have four kids and you both actually finish books. What's your routine? How do you make space to craft your work?

MC: Thank God school was invented. I don't know what we would do if it hadn't been. We send them away every day. They leave the house -- we drive them to school, and then we've got all this time. Ayelet works primarily, almost entirely during that period, and she's very efficient. When she's really working on a novel or whatever she gets her word count in every day, and that works well for her. I have a harder time -- my natural rhythm is to work at night, stay up late and to sleep late. I can get more writing done between midnight and 1 o'clock in the morning than at any other hour of the day.

Exclaim! interviews singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens.

Seattle Weekly interviews Phil Elverum of Mount Eerie.

NME's video blog lists the 18 most explicit music videos ever.

The Pitch interviews drummer Kliph Scurlock of The Flaming Lips about the band's new album, Embryonic.

One more question: Since we were talking about movies earlier, if you were in charge of casting Flaming Lips: The Movie, whom would you pick to play you, Wayne, Steven and Michael?

That's actually really funny because that's a conversation Steven and Wayne have had a couple of times, and they've actually come up with the actors, and I forget ... I think Morgan Freeman would play Wayne ... oh fuck, man, I don't... and I think it was decided that Jack Black would play me, and, God, I don't remember who it was decided would play Steven and Michael. Obviously, it wasn't a super-serioius discussion, but the end result was that Morgan Freeman would be Wayne. The thinking was that, you know, "He's got a beard and he wears suits a lot and he's got a deep gravelly voice and, so, yeah, he'd make a great Wayne. He's tall and thin..." Jack Black was like, "He's kind of a spazz and a dork, so he'd be a great Kliph."

A.V. Club Chicago interviews Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy.

Cult of Mac lists 20 all-time great iTunes album covers.

Salon, Weekender, the Daily Egyptian, and Pitchfork review the new Mountain Goats album, The Life of the World to Come.

Dirty Laundry shares a live video session with The Twilight Sad.

TechCrunch reports that Skype's founders are starting a music paid subscription service.

paidContent reports that MOG will start its own paid subscription service in a couple of weeks.

Amazon MP3 is giving away a free track, "These Days" from REM's new live album, Live at the Olympia (out October 27th).

USA Today reviews Bob Dylan's holiday album, Christmas in the Heart.

Bob Dylan's first holiday collection, Christmas in the Heart (* * * ½ out of four), arrives today with 15 hymns, chestnuts and popular Santa songs. He couldn't sound more sentimental or sincere.

Current contests at Largehearted Boy:

Win one of two copies of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, by Jane Austen and Ben H. White.

Win James Ellroy's new novel, Blood's a Rover.

Follow me on Twitter for links that don't make the daily "Shorties" columns.

also at Largehearted Boy:

daily mp3 downloads
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
weekly music & DVD release lists


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