Writing about Music
A Dirty Dozen Dirtbombs Facts, and One Opinion (Journola 2015)
Mick Collins, the undisputed leader of the band, sings, plays guitar, and dreams up half-baked concepts for their albums, like covering techno classics or manufacturing fake bubblegum classics. He’s also—spoiler alert—a furry fan.
A Honky Tonk Dissident in Wales (Journola 2015)
Jeb Loy Nichols is his real name, and he’s just about the polar opposite of that other Jeb you’ve been hearing about. “I've lived my whole life having to repeat my name,” Nichols said to me in an e-mail. “Maybe Mr. Bush will raise awareness of those three letters: J E B.”
Forgotten Songs: The Case of Scott Fagan and Stephin Merritt (Vinyl District 2014)
The coincidences between the father and son, who never met until a few months ago, might raise some eyebrows but probably fall short of uncanny.
Amazing Graces: Tales from the Life of a Song (Bridge Magazine, 2003)
Vague enough and powerful enough to fit any size or kind of personal crisis, “Amazing Grace” endures in contexts far removed from its eighteenth-century origins.
I Used to Think Jazz Mattered (Vinyl District, 2014)
In nearly every other facet of existence I was irreverent and lackadaisical. It’s the fact that I was capable of such earnestness that stays with me today.
"$1000 Wedding": Gram Parsons's Faulknerian Mini-Opera (Perfect Sound Forever 2001)
What starts as a mournful wedding progresses toward the climax of a joyful funeral.
What Ever Happened to Madeleine Peyroux? (Perfect Sound Forever 2003)
What if a singer opens her mouth in 1996 and 1926 comes out?
Kenny Millions: "I Would Go Anywhere" (Perfect Sound Forever, 2002)
In those days, New York was hard-core heavy- the whole rip-off junkie scene.
Dissecting Dylan (Chicago Reader, 1997)
Dylan in 1974 is as American as Dylan in 1967 is as American as Tupac Shakur is as American as Marilyn Manson. His great achievement lies not in getting one voice exactly right but in getting so many so right.
Mixes and Obsessions