Hello, all you who wander the Virtual World,
I haven’t posted a ‘picks’ in a long while, so those seven or eight of you
who asked me to please do a new picks post, here you are:
I’ve been listening still, and often, to The King Is Dead, the
Decemberists latest record. It’s so lyrically dense and literate, and so
melodic that I haven’t tired of it on repeated listening in a short period.
Also I must confess to a crush on Colin Meloy’s voice. I hope he is okay
I just got in the mail a copy of the new Blackie and The Rodeo Kings' 'Kings
And Queens’, and it’s a fantastic record. The ‘queens’ are Lucinda Williams,
Emmylou Harris, Sara Watkins, Cassandra Wilson, and several others,
including me, and each track seems tailor-made for the female guest. The
songs are badass but sweet. A tough trick to pull off, and a really
Also, I just received an advance of Mike Doughty's newest release, and I am
crazy about it. I think it’s his best yet. This man knows his way around a
catchy melody, and yet, each song is so unique and lyrically wondrous. Also,
there’s that sexy, gravely voice that makes you swoon. Nothing not to like
about Mr. Doughty.
Finally, Is it too self-absorbed to say how proud I am of my new
‘Essential’? I can’t believe I’ve put in 32 years as a songwriter and
singer, and that those years are so well-represented on this record. It’s
quite moving to me, and humbling. I’m so honored Sony came to me and
suggested it was time. I don’t feel old, I feel rich.
I got nothing. I saw ‘Super 8' and although I liked it, and it hit all
the right notes, I left feeling I’d seen it before. And I had. Seems like
every Spielberg movie ever made was somehow borrowed from or represented.
But I suppose there’s a generation who hasn’t seen every Spielberg movie
ever made, so…
I’m still stuck on Nurse Jackie. Addiction, marital strife,
affairs, child with mental health problems, bone-crushing exhaustion,
stressful work relationships, crazy and funny boss… what’s not to like?
I just finished ‘Dead End Gene Pool' by Wendy Burden, who I used to
know, back in the old days (aka 1992) when I lived in Greenwich Village.
Wendy comes from Old New York society and Old Money, and this is a
fascinating, funny, dark, honest look at the incredible dysfunction of a
complex, super-rich family. I’d love to see the film version of this book.
Now I’m reading yet another biography of Elizabeth I, by Christopher
Hibbert. It’s so well-written, and doesn’t veer off into the dry pedantry
of so many of these historical bios. I really loved Hilary Mantel’s ‘Wolf
Hall’, which sent me on this latest Tudor excursion. This is my kind of
escapist, pleasure reading, along with Jane Austen, of course, my go-to
author for comfort. Speaking of her, I re-read ‘Pride and Prejudice' on my
iPad, to see what the experience of reading 19th century fiction would be
like on this new device, and must say it was very pleasurable. Took me a
couple days, and I don’t think I missed any nuance.
Just saw ‘Jerusalem' starring the sublime Mark Rylance. Is there
any other stage actor who is his equal? I think not. The play is wordy,
funny, full of metaphors and provocation, and I was intrigued, more than
entertained. Sometimes that’s very, very good.