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March 12, 2012

Shorties (A Free Music Archive SXSW Sampler, The Best Author Beards, and more)

The Free Music Archive shares a 122-song SXSW playlist of band's appearing at the festival to stream and/or download.


The Telegraph lists the top 12 author beards.


The Browser interviews Alexandra Harris, and she recommends five books on modernism.


BlackBook interviews Magnetic Fields frontman Stephin Merritt.

Sondheim has such a playful way of writing lyrics, and I was wondering if that ever influenced your lyrics with Magnetic Fields, too. Because your lyrics are very funny and deadpan, and especially in the broad genre of indie rock, there's a real lack of humor.

I don't know anything about indie rock, but I know a lot about Sondheim. If there was a dearth of indie rock bands influenced by Sondheim, I'd listen to indie rock. When I think of indie rock, I think of The Supremes. So I'm especially invested in the idea of indie rock. I like Melvin Johnson but it doesn’t mean I espouse his views.


At NPR, Myla Goldberg recommends three books about betrayal.


Slash shares a Popfession.


The New York Times profiles Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood.


William Golding's daughter discusses the British author's life with the Observer.


NPR is streaming the new Lost in the Trees album, A Church That Fits Our Needs.


The Line of Best Fit interviews Shins frontman James Mercer.


The Guardian profiles singer-songwriter Paul Weller.

Not being a music journalist, I'm not sure how to describe his new album, Sonik Kicks. On several tracks he sounds quite a lot like David Bowie (his new wife is a massive fan, and named one of their sons Bowie; Weller named the other John Paul), and a bit like Bruce Springsteen on others, and even like David Byrne on one. But on all of them he sounds like he's enjoying himself enormously, and when I ask him to describe the record, he agrees.


The Telegraph examines how Twitter is changing the literary world.


Andrew Bird talks to Weekend Edition about his new album Break It Yourself.


The National Post profiles author Richard Mason.

When he first visited Toronto, Richard Mason was the enfant formidable of the literary scene, conducting interviews about his debut novel in the grandiose lobby of the King Edward Hotel. He'd written The Drowning People when he was 19, and reportedly it won him nearly $1-million in worldwide rights. The New Yorker had thrown him a party; Vogue, impressed by his Hugh Grant-esque looks, had done a photo shoot, and everyone from his native South Africa to London to Toronto wanted to speak with him. Eager to please, he said "yes" to everything. He now wishes he hadn't.


NPR is streaming Esperanza Spalding's new album Radio Music Society (out March 20th).


The Washington Post interviews Garry Trudeau about Doonesbury's forthcoming abortion storyline.


Win Geoff Dyer's new book Zona, a DVD of Andrei Tarkovsky's film Stalker and a $100 Threadless gift certificate in this week's Largehearted Boy contest.


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


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


also at Largehearted Boy:

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

List of Online "Best Books of 2011" Lists
List of Online Year-End 2011 Music 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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