Happy birthday, Voltaire and Björk!


Voltaire was born François-Marie Arouet on this day in Paris, 1694. This Enlightenment writer was constantly being exiled and imprisoned for his thoughts, criticisms, and texts concerning the state of the world around him. Be it philosophy, history, or religion – he had sass for all of it. His most snarky and well-known masterpiece is Candid.


Björk Guðmundsdóttir was born on this day in Iceland, 1965. How to explain her? The tiniest girl with the biggest sound, a voice unearthly and a creative soul to match – this singer-songwriter has her fingers in many musical pies from electronica to classical, and everything in-between.


PM Radio, your afternoon dispatch of rock and lit news

Stephen King and John Mellencamp’s musical, that’s been 13 years in the making, might finally be Broadway-bound

Also in the works: a soundtrack of the show featuring artists like Elvis Costello and Sheryl Crow. http://bit.ly/SI4Onu

AC/DC released their first live album in 20 years

It’s called Live at River Plate and you can listen to it here: http://bit.ly/TNwB7p

Release the Hounds! Today’s new books and records…


Holidays in Heck, P.J. O’Rourke
Grove Press: http://www.pjorourke.com/

Microscripts, Robert Walser
New Directions: http://ndbooks.com/book/microscripts

Married Love: And Other Stories, Tessa Hadley
Harper Perennial: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/18/books/review/married-love-stories-by-tessa-hadley.html?_r=0

My Bookstore: Writers Celebrate Their Favorite Places to Browse, Read, and Shop, Ronald Rice
Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers: http://www.amazon.com/My-Bookstore-Writers-Celebrate-Favorite/dp/1579129102

Through the Window: Seventeen Essays and a Short Story, Julian Barnes
Vintage: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/bookreviews/9648457/Through-the-Window-by-Julian-Barnes-review.html

The Hunger Moon: New and Selected Poems, 1980-2010, Marge Piercy
Knopf: http://margepiercy.com/portfolio-items/the-hunger-moon-new-and-selected-poems-1980-2010/

Poems 1962-2012, Louise Glück
Farrar, Straus and Giroux: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/09/books/louise-gluck-poems-1962-2012.html

Liberation: Diaries:1970-1983, Christopher Isherwood
Harper Collins: http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2012/jun/17/liberation-isherwood-diaries-digested-read


In Motion Pictures, Elvis Costello
Ume: http://www.elviscostello.com/

The Odds, The Evens
Dischord Records: http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/17328-the-odds/

Instrumental Tourist, Tim Hecker & Daniel Lopatin
Software Records: http://stereogum.com/1198471/stream-tim-hecker-daniel-lopatin-instrumental-tourist/album-stream/

A.M. Landscapes,  Takka Takka
Ernest Jenning Record Co.: http://www.brooklynvegan.com/archives/2012/10/takka_takka_ann.html

No One Can Ever Know – The Remixes, The Twilight Sad
Fat Cat from Piccadilly: http://www.fat-cat.co.uk/site/news/the-twilight-sad-remix-album-and-tour-dates

Twelve Reasons To Die, Ghostface Killah
Soul Temple: http://www.spin.com/articles/ghostface-killah-announces-new-lp-twelve-reasons-to-die

Live at River Plate, AC/DC
Columbia: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/ac-dc-rip-it-up-in-argentina-on-live-at-river-plate-album-premiere-20121116

AM Radio, your morning dispatch of rock and lit news

Philip Roth’s advice to new novelists

“[J]ust stop now. You don’t want to do this to yourself.” http://avc.lu/QUnfKr

“Folk-rock-on-the-pop-charts movement” – is this real?

“what’s so astonishing about this whole folk-rock-on-the-pop-charts movement, is how it’s happening in an environment almost entirely geared around club music” http://bit.ly/RP2JIe

Happy birthday, Don DeLillo and Duane Allman!

Don DeLillo

Don DeLillo was born on this day in New York City, 1936. Novelist, essayist, and playwright, DeLillo is called a postmodernist though he’s not a fan of labels. He takes great pleasure and influence from things outside literature such as jazz and film; and he addresses many topics – from sports to the violence of consumerism. The man is just crazy prolific.

Duane Allman

Duane Allman was born on this day in Nashville, 1946. He’s Gregg Allman’s older brother; and it shouldn’t be hard to figure out what southern rock/blues band those two inspired. Although the Allman Brothers would go on longer than Duane (he died in a motorcycle accident just a few years after the group came together), he will truly never be forgotten.

PM Radio, your afternoon dispatch of rock and lit news

Authors exploring autism

“The mysteries behind autism make it an evocative topic – and ambiguity leaves room for writers to romanticize, theorize, and appropriate at will.” http://n.pr/QmXBhj

The Last Goodbye: a Shakespeare inspired musical brought to you by Jeff Buckley

“‘Suddenly I felt that across centuries you had two kindred spirits talking about the same things: love, relationships, suffering, death.'” http://bit.ly/WpVECm

AM Radio, your morning dispatch of rock and lit news

“The Smith Tapes” – interviews of the counterculture stars

Howard Smith’s interviews for The Village Voice from 1969 – 1972 will be released over the course of next year. There are more than 100 interviews, some of which include John and Yoko, Frank Zappa, and Lou Reed. http://nyti.ms/S4rWj5

To e-read or to regular read, and does it matter?

Slate posted a sophisticated article last week tearing apart e-readers. Here’s a contrast piece from Book Riot.