Lacking a focus for a real post, I’d thought I would share the three recordings which I find myself listening to the most as of late.
Marianne Faithfull: Easy Come Easy Go
I don’t know, but this CD has really grab’d hold of me. In fact, I don’t think there is a single track that doesn’t touch me in one way or another. That weathered voice wrapping around all of these standards with guests such Keith Richards, Antony, Rufus Wainwright and Nick Cave — it is rather magical. I particularly love the title track — an old Bourbon Street blues song which works in opposition to itself: The producer has arranged it as a bit of old New Orleans street blues played as a dirge — with Ms. Faithfull performing it with more than a bit of cynicism and with little or no concern of hitting the correct notes. A simple song becomes a complex bit of art in the vein of something one might expect from Tom Waits. Magic.
Radiohead: The Bends
One of those classic rock recordings that I loved at the time it came out but had somehow forgotten in the shuffle of my iPod. I stumbled across “Fake Plastic Trees” and found myself all caught up in the rock-out of the time it was released. Rock and roll with a heart.
Bonnie Prince Billy: The Letting Go
One of my favorite LP’s. Ing turned me on to this record. Haunting, soft, poetic and stunningly beautiful. I can’t seem to listen to it enough. And, in the last couple of weeks I’ve been playing it quite a bit. I don’t think Billy ever really makes a musical mis-step, but I think this is his finest hour thus far.
If one has the ability, The Letting Go and Easy Come Easy Go sound best when played in their vinyl versions. …but, mp3’s also work quite well. Nothing can stop great art.
Never stop the music.
So, as a part of therapy, I pulled a number of my fictionalized reality stories into a sort of book. …A manuscript, if you will. Not being one to follow rules I ignored all the statements of publishers stating that they would not accept unsolicited submissions. I just sent out a hard and electonic copy to about 12 publishers.
Interestingly enough, there was only one publisher who did not read (or review) my manuscript and it was a local Bay Area Indi-publisher.
I was thinking I could put together a rejection letter colage for the hell of it. I discovered that no one sends letters anymore. I received rejection emails. I could not find a way to pull those into a colage of any sort.
But, here was the interesting thing — three publishers (two of note) contacted me and informed me that my collection of stories was “of interest” and “of merit” and that they might be interested in considering publishing it. However, all three refused to take it any further until I had a literay agent. I had sent this manuscript to a couple of lit agents I found on the Internet. I never heard from them.
I poked about and asked a few writers I know about how one goes about getting a lit agent. My B even contacted a friend of a friend who is a senior editor at a large publishing house — but, I never could get a firm grip on how to secure one. I also did not relish the idea of having to actually speak to anyone.
A junior editor in the UK at a house of note first suggested that I consider self-publishing as a better route. B then suggested this. Then I noticed a couple of books I’ve read were self-published.
So, after a very rough therapy session on Saturday, I decided that DIY was the best route for me. To be totally honest, I do not think anyone would actually pay to read anything I might write. But, to be equally honest, as I move into my 42 year on the planet I’d like to be able to say that I saw at least one personal thing through to conclusion. I can list a number of professional objectives and tasks I’ve completed — but I don’t think I’ve succeeded in doing anything on a personal or artistic level.
So, DIY Amazon.com self Kindle and soft bound print publishing here I come.
A large part of me feels very much the loser for doing this —
but another aspect of me is saying, “NO! This is cutting edge 21st Century edge! Just fucking do it!”
So, that is decided. I’m just going to fucking do it. I might have to give up a meal (or two) per day to pursue this but at the end of it I can say, “I wrote this and I put it out there.”
I finished my coffee, chatted with a surfer dude about the lack of true wave available this morning and headed home to start the wheels on getting it going. I saw this log as the surfer lit a funny cig and complained that he just didn’t have the time or gas to get to LA this weekend.
…I text’d my baby brother in NYC and asked him to take a snapshot of something for me that I will use as the cover. He’s a professional artiste so it should look cool. He told me it might take him a while. I told him to please just take the shot and email the jpeg to me by tomorrow. He agreed.
Me and B are getting a Kindle2 and on I roll.
Damn the torpedos!