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January 2, 2014

Book Notes - Daniel Menaker "My Mistake"

My Mistake

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book.

Previous contributors include Bret Easton Ellis, Kate Christensen, Kevin Brockmeier, George Pelecanos, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Myla Goldberg, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others.

Daniel Menaker's memoir My Mistake recounts his life in publishing in lyrical and precise prose.

Jennifer Egan wrote of the book:

"Daniel Menaker's distinctive journey through his own memories is impossible to resist—and not just for those of us with an appetite for literary anecdote. My Mistake is also the story of literary New York, with keen, vivid impressions from Menaker's Forties childhood, Cold War coming-of-age, and a long career at the epicenter of the publishing industry during the onslaught of the Digital Age."

Stream a playlist of these songs at Spotify.

In his own words, here is Daniel Menaker's Book Notes music playlist for his memoir, My Mistake:

"The Wild Goose," as sung by Kate Rusby, a sea shanty that this great British folk singer, with her charming Yorkshire accent, turns into a sailor's soulful lament over his rejection by a young woman walking on the beach.

"Die Thaelmann-Kolonne" (also known as "Freiheit" ["Freedom"], a marching song from the Spanish Civil War, sung in German by Ernst Busch.

Folkways issued a multi-lingual LP called Songs from the Spanish Civil War that contains some of the most stirring and passionate political and military music you will ever hear. Hitler stole the melody of "Freiheit" for some of his Nazi rallies. Or the International brigade stole it from the Nazis. I hope the latter.

"Farruca," a flamenco explosion played by Carlos Montoya. A rare video of this master guitarist playing this piece can be found on youtube, here:

"He Stopped Loving Her Today," by George Jones. Just about anything by George Jones.

"Evangeline," by The Band and Emmylou Harris, as performed in Scorsese's The Last Waltz. Mainly, for me, Emmylou Harris. Such conviction in this song!

RIP the great Levon Helm.

"An Poc ar Buile" ("The Mad Puck Goat"), a Gaelic song mentioned in the book:

Daniel Menaker and My Mistake links:

the author's website
the author's Wikipedia entry
excerpt from the book (at Salon)
excerpt from the book (at Vulture)

Boston Globe review
Entertainment Weekly review
New York Observer review
New York Times review
Publishers Weekly review

The Arty Semite interview with the author
The Barnes and Noble Review interview with the author
The Leonard Lopate Show interview with the author
Weekend Edition interview with the author

also at Largehearted Boy:

Book Notes (2012 - ) (authors create music playlists for their book)
Book Notes (2005 - 2011) (authors create music playlists for their book)
my 11 favorite Book Notes playlist essays

Online "Best of 2013" Book Lists
2013 Year-End Online Music Lists

100 Online Sources for Free and Legal Music Downloads
Antiheroines (interviews with up and coming female comics artists)
Atomic Books Comics Preview (weekly comics highlights)
Daily Downloads (free and legal daily mp3 downloads)
guest book reviews
Largehearted Word (weekly new book highlights)
musician/author interviews
Note Books (musicians discuss literature)
Shorties (daily music, literature, and pop culture links)
Soundtracked (composers and directors discuss their film's soundtracks)
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from the week's CD releases)
weekly music & DVD release lists

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