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November 5, 2011

Shorties (Jeffrey Eugenides, Music to Occupy Wall Street, and more)

The Montreal Gazette interviews author Jeffrey Eugenides.

I'm always fascinated by the epigraphs writers choose for their work. For The Marriage Plot you've chosen two, one from Francois de La Rochefoucauld and one from Talking Heads. They make an interesting juxtaposition. One's French, one's American; one’s late-17th century, one late-20th; one's literary, one musical.

The first one (La Rochefoucauld) is literary and philosophical, and I think it connects with Roland Barthes and a certain amount of semiotic thinking. The other one is very much from my college days. Talking Heads' David Byrne went to the Rhode Island School of Design, which is right down the hill from Brown, so that music was very popular at the time, and I think we also felt a little bit connected to it because he had gone to college on the same hill. The cerebral, surrealist quality of Talking Heads' lyrics appealed to my generation of college kids and the kids I'm writing about in the book. They seemed to be the right band to pick in terms of popularity and sensibility. The lines I quote have a certain mystical quality to them. Our disbelief in, and our quick questioning about existence, certainly pertain to Mitchell in the book.

AlterNet lists eight musicians making new music to occupy Wall Street.

The Daily Beast reviews Haruki Murakami's new novel 1Q84.

Curt Kirkwood talks to about the history of the Meat Puppets.

NYU Local recommends books to read and "make you feel kind of cultured."

The Vancouver Sun profiles singer-songwriter Dan Mangan. lists authors who support the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Help fund Tallahassee Turns Ten, a tribute album to the Mountain Goats' Tallahassee, at Kickstarter.

The New York Times reviews Charles J. Shields' new book And So It Goes: Kurt Vonnegut: A Life.

The Kitten Covers is a Tumblr devoted to album covers featuring kittens.

Robert K. Massie talks to Weekend Edition about his new biography, Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman.

At the Guardian, singer-songwriters Billy Bragg and Johnny Flynn discuss protest music.

All Things Considered interviews Phaidon Press's editorial director Amanda Renshaw about the publisher's massive eighteen pound, almost 1,000 page book, The Art Museum.

On sale for $4.99 at Amazon MP3: Florence + The Machine's new album Ceremonials.

The Ottawa Citizen reviews the album.

Flo apparently doesn't dial down. Her sophomore outing, if anything, is bigger, more melodramatic, more layered and showcases even more ambition than Lungs, her endearingly assured debut. Miraculously, Welch manages to fit all of this into a package that seems neither showy in a self-conscious way nor a simple polished magnification of those qualities that made her an indie star to begin with.

Neil MacGregor talks to Weekend Edition about his new book A History of the World in 100 Objects.

The Quietus interviews singer-songwriter Ryan Adams about his literary future.

You've written a couple of well-received written poetry books. Have you got a novel in you?

RA: I do have a novel in me. I was talking to a friend of mind who's a novelist today actually. So I get tips all the time. It's a different kind of discipline. To write a novel the way you want to write it, It's like making a patchwork quilt. First you have to come up with all this stuff, and then you have to tape it together, and then you have to sew it together, and then you have to make sure it fits. I can go to a record naturally and make a song, but to write a novel, I didn't train myself for that, I trained myself for poetry, so I'm trying to relearn.

Talk of the Nation interviews Jane Leavy about editing The Best American Sports Writing 2011.

Amazon MP3 has 100 holiday albums on sale for $5.

Amazon MP3 has 100 digital albums on sale for $5.

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

also at Largehearted Boy:

previous Shorties posts (news and links from the worlds of music, books, and pop culture)

Online "Best Books of 2011" Online Lists

100 Online Sources for Free and Legal Music Downloads
Atomic Books Comics Preview (the week's best new comics & graphic novels)
daily mp3 downloads
Largehearted Word (the week's best new books)
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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