Frank Black of the Pixies and bad boy Ryan Adams have put out new albums that, at their mellow best, skillfully substitute pedal steel for screams. By Danielle Dreilinger The 2005 Newport Folk Festival made an unusual decision when it came time to pick their Saturday headliner: seminal indie-rock band the Pixies, famous for the […]
By Vincent Czyz In his latest book, acclaimed writer Orhan Pamuk has penned an intriguing memoir that focuses on his relationship with Istanbul, the city in which he has always lived. Istanbul: Memories and the City by Orhan Pamuk. Knopf. Ottoman poets were fond of referring to Istanbul, then known to the world as Constantinople, […]
By Debra Cash Tap superstar Savion Glover effortlessly bridges the jazz and rap generations. Improvography is a word coined by the late Gregory Hines. Neologisms are about grabbing the power to make definitions; they assert that language is not specific or expressive enough to make your meaning clear. When tap dancer Savion Glover uses “Improvography” […]
A new novel by a Chinese dissident provides a comically stinging vision of his homeland.
A new book gives a philosophical analysis of American culture’s obsession with nonsense.
In this moving memoir, the daughter of celebrated psychologist Erik Erikson meditates on how fame and ego shatter the foundations of family life. “In the Shadow of Fame: A Memoir by the Daughter of Erik H. Erikson” by Sue Erikson Bloland. (Viking) By Debbie Porter Sometimes, the lives of the famous resemble fairy tales: an […]
Sci-fi master Samuel Delany’s latest novel is a mystery set in the ancient world. Phallos, by Samuel R. Delany. (Bamberger Books) By Vincent Czyz Samuel R. Delany is best known as “l’enfant terrible” who published his first novel at age 20 and then went on to win science fiction’s most prestigious awards — the Nebula […]
Dance icon Bill T. Jones confounds expectations about race and the power of stereotypes in two new dance pieces. “Reading, Mercy and the Artificial Nigger” and “Mercy 10×8 On a Circle” by Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company By Debra Cash Bill T. Jones would no doubt take umbrage at being compared to the white […]
By Tess Lewis This masterful new novel sees heresy and idealism as the warp and woof of history. Heir to the Glimmering World by Cynthia Ozick. (Houghton Mifflin) Little in Cynthia Ozick’s books is predictable or simple. Her sinuous essays are, as she says, “thing[s] of the imagination,” “the movement of a free mind […]
“The Diaries of Kenneth Tynan” provides literate entertainment and cautionary tales about what happens to a critic when the will-to-celebrity triumphs over the urge-to-critique. The Diaries of Kenneth Tynan Edited by John Lahr. Bloomsbury, 439 pages. By Bill Marx Kenneth Tynan’s descent from brilliance to muddle is a fable for theater critics, a cautionary tale […]