Indiana Travelogue

As soon as my wife Judy and I decided to go to Chicago for our vacation I started talking about going to Hammond. Judy understands all too well that some obsessions last a lifetime and had no problem with my addition to our itinerary. You could immediately tell those who were from the Midwest from […]

Best Things

Best Thing I Heard All Week:  James McMurtry, Complicated Game. Hear them crabbers cuss the weather And they cuss the government too Nowadays crabbin’ and fishin’ hangin’ on to a pot to piss in Is just about the best a man can do, sings Larry’s son and that about sums up his politics and his […]

Going into the City…

Back in the days right after the extinction of the dinosaurs, when I was still new to New York City, it was a pretty frequent thing to spot Robert Christgau riding his crappy-looking bike around the East Village, his shoulder-length hair flapping in the breeze, or to espy him hanging around CBGBs, Hurrah’s and the […]

Best Things This Week

Next time you see some gushing twit handing out a load of bullshit at the Academy Awards about the power of movies to ‘change the world,’ consider Dr. Strangelove.

Wild Man Still On The Loose

To this day “Oh, Lord, it’s Jerry Lee Lewis,” or some variation of that, is probably a fairly common response to any encounter with Jerry Lee; his reputation has always preceded him. It was pretty much my reaction when I heard there was yet another Jerry Lee Lewis book on the horizon.

Peter Matthiessen, 1927 – 2014

I met Peter Matthiessen once when the Friends of the Library were selling books at the Koret Auditorium in 2001. Matthiessen was featured speaker at a program in the “Writers of the Land” series sponsored by the Trust for Public Lands and the Wallace Stegner Environmental Center at the San Francisco Public Library. He spoke, […]

The River & The Thread

Rosanne Cash’s last CD was called The List; an album of covers released in 2009 and drawn from a list given to her by her father of his one hundred essential country songs. The Man in Black intended his daughter to draw inspiration from the list, certainly, and perhaps to humble her a little as […]

Kansas City Lightning

To me the most boring part of any biography is the beginning. You know, all that stuff about the subject’s childhood and schooling and who his parents were and what they were like and even who his grandparents were. It’s usually not interesting, almost always dull. There are only so many ways to make a […]