Amiri Baraka has been getting in the groove again during the past year, though as he says to those who wonder why he’s “back on the music”, “I never did go nowhere. Somewhere just runned away from the boy…”
First of the Month has asked a number of writers to comment on No Direction Home — Martin Scorcese’s recent documentary about Bob Dylan’s early years. Here’s John Leland’s thoughtful response to our call…
Lifeline, Iris DeMent, Flariella Records
The Way I Should, Iris DeMent, Warner Brothers
What’s the Matter with Kansas? , Thomas Frank, Metropolitan Books
Spirit and Flesh, James M Ault Jr, Knopf
American Jesus, Stephen Prothero, Farrar, Straus, and Giroux
Drive-By Truckers’ new double CD Southern Rock Opera is the most daring and developed expression of rock and roll attitude since the Clash’s Sandinista. The subject of the Truckers’ Opera is the “duality” – their word – of life in the land where blues began.
One of the greatest treasures in my memory is the night Billie Holiday introduced me to Miles Davis and I introduced Billie Holiday to the Beat Generation.