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Posts Tagged ‘Rick Moody’

New Anthology Takes Aims at Progressive Rock Haters

We love the title of Marc Weingarten and Tyson Cornell‘s new anthology Yes Is The Answer. That’s because the “Yes” doubles as the name of a top band from the progressive era this collection of essays wholeheartedly defends.

Joining Weingarten and Cornell Thursday June 13 at Skylight Books in Los Feliz for a 7:30 p.m. reading-signing event will be contributors John Albert (former member of the bands Christian Death, Bad Religion), James Greer and Margaret Wappler. From Weingarten’s book intro:

The haters weren’t all wrong, of course. Prog was ridiculous. But never underestimate a young boy’s finely honed sense of irony. We loved some of this stuff precisely because it was overblown. It’s kind of like when Evel Knievel jumped over thirty cars – you mean, he did that? We would laugh at some passages, marvel at others – it was all part of the ongoing conversation about Prog.

And yes, it was pretentious. That’s why we liked Prog Rock; it strived for something beyond what we were hearing on AM radio. We didn’t give a damn about rock’s first principles, all that three chords and the truth business; give us Prog Rock’s grandeur, its mushy mysticism, its blissed-out mystery.

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State by State, Or, A View of America That Doesn’t Involve Lipsticked Pigs*

wpagg.pngThis has been a long, and awful week for a lot of people (one of the upshots of being in the online world is that we don’t have any money to lose) filled with extremely depressing numbers. So we thought, hey, why not end the week with some interesting numbers that have absolutely nothing to do with money, or Wall Street, or anything financial whatsoever. Phew. For example, did you know that New York rates 36th in the country for toothlessness (17.5%), or that we are 25th when it comes to breastfeeding (maybe they forgot to include Park Slope), or that we have the lowest suicide rate (Alaska has the highest, insert Palin joke here), and the 7th most Classic Movie Theaters and Drive In’s per capita. We also rank last in population born elsewhere in the U.S., which sort of blows the theory that there no native New Yorkers.

And no, we did not decide to read the Census bureau in lieu of the (scary) front page of the Times this morning. All these numbers can actually be found in the back of a new collection of essays called State by State, which features the likes of Anthony Bourdain (NJ), Rick Moody (CT), Sarah Vowell (MT), and Susan Orlean (OH) (just to name four of the fifty contributors — that’s right, one for each state). The book’s editors Matt Weiland and Sean Wilsey took their inspiration from the WPA state guides of the 1930′s (a government intervention program we would love to see someone in Washington reconsider). There’s also a movie. You can watch the trailer for the movie that was made to accompany the book after the jump. Books have trailers these days, you know.

*We haven’t actually read the whole thing yet, so we can’t guarantee the absence of lipsticked pigs.

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