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November 11, 2010

Shorties (Ariel Pink, Joan Didion, and more)

Ariel Pink talks to Washington City Paper about his latest album, Before Today.

Yet his latest record Before Today—his first recorded in an actual studio—sounds utterly unique. Certainly, there are sounds drawn from the past, and not just the psychedelic pop he clearly loves. Take the bass line of "Menopause Man," which isn't so different than the one from "Billie Jean". Observers tend to describe Pink's music as nostalgic and classic-sounding. He wouldn't necessarily disagree. "Everyone wants to be sincere, an individual. But how would you describe an idea, if you didn't have words already?"

The Montreal Mirror also profiles Pink.


Guest of a Guest interviews author Joan Didion.


Yesterday's update to the list of online "best of 2010" book lists included The Atlantic's books of the year, Phi Beta Kappa's outstanding scholarly books, and Delicious Magazine's best books.


The New York Press looks back on the history of Soft Skull Press.


Fresh Air interviews legendary singer-songwriter Loretta Lynn.


The New York Times examines the trend of literary agents moving their offices from Manhattan to Brooklyn.


The Indianapolis Star profiles the city's new Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library.


The Boston Herald interviews John Stirratt of Wilco and the Autumn Defense.


Culture Surfing interviews Pat Conroy about his new essay collection, My Reading Life.


RIA Novosti profiles Russian folk-punk singer-songwriter Yanka Dyagileva.

Yanka was part of the brief flowering of a genuine musical underground that occurred during the final days of the Soviet Union and the early years of the new Russian state. With society in a state of upheaval, groups like Kino, Akvarium and her sometime lover Yegor Letov's magnificently uncompromising punk rock ensemble Grazhdanskаya Oborona captured perfectly the confusion and excitement of a country that had no idea where it was heading. The era was to Russia what the sixties were to the West, and the music was just as vital.


The New Statesman reviews the newly published book, Saul Bellow: Letters.


Pop Candy reviews a book I truly covet, the 1,200 page Simpsons World: The Ultimate Episode Guide.


On sale for $3.99 at Amazon MP3: Superchunk's latest album Majesty Shredding.


The Financial Post explains Amazon's domination of the e-book market.


The 25 best blogs for folk music fans.


Paul Auster talks to All Things Considered about his new novel, Sunset Park. An excerpt (as well as audio of Auster reading a chapter from the book) is also shared.


The Man from London lists the five best electropop albums ever,


Tina Brown shares must-read books about women and power with Morning Edition.


Win the Scott Pilgrim vs. the World DVD in this week's Largehearted Boy contest.


Follow me on Twitter and Stumbleupon for links (updated throughout the day) that don't make the daily "Shorties" columns.


also at Largehearted Boy:

previous Shorties posts (daily links from the worlds of music, literature, and pop culture)

Online "Best Books of 2010" lists

Atomic Books Comics Preview (highlights of the week's comics & graphic novel releases)
daily mp3 downloads
Largehearted Word (highlights of the week's book releases)
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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