Tag Archives: Richard Brautigan

Three Moments of Anticipation

#1

Well, I don’t have to wait long for the first event as tomorrow, singer/songwriter/novelist & Richmond Fontaine front man, Willy Vlautin, hits the stage twice in Brisbane and I will be there to catch both performances.

At 4:00pm, Willy will be reading from his latest book Lean On Pete and talking about the writing process at Avid Reader (tickets available here). This for me is the real treat, as Vlautin is one of those rare, outlaw writers, who is farming the rich vein of Americana, much like Steinbeck and Carver, delivering tales from a fractured society, without softening any of the blows. Vlautins prose is achingly real, capturing the unique voice of the fringe dweller and their struggle in all its ragged beauty.

You can watch trailers for his last two books Northline and Lean On Pete, with Willy providing the superb backing music on both.

Then in the evening he will be teaming up with fellow Richmond Fontaine member, Dan Eccles for an intimate acoustic performance at The Troubadour (tickets available here). To get a taste of what Richmond Fontaine are all about, check out this footage of Willy playing two songs from their acclaimed album, Thirteen Cities, in a motel room, which by the way is so fitting for Vlautin, seeing many of his characters live their lives bouncing from motel to motel (his first book was called The Motel Life).

Willy plays The Kid from Belmont St and Capsized from Thirteen Cities.

Hope to see many of you Lost Sharks there…

#2

There are some amazing projects underway, focussing on the life and work of the late Richard Brautigan. There is a documentary currently being shot titled For Richard, directed by Paul Swenson and Anthony Lucero and Lucero is also touted to be directing a feature film adaptation of Brautigan’s classic novel, The Abortion: An Historical Romance 1966. Let’s hope both of these projects see the light of day, as previously there were plans to make a feature film based on his novel The Hawkline Monster, with Jack Nicholson and Dustin Hoffman touted as playing the cowboys… imagine that!!!

#3

For those who missed the glory of Cohen in 2009, never fear, the great man seems to be taking a leaf from the Bob Dylan tour handbook and is returning to these shores in November this year. Seriously, if you didn’t see him last time, don’t miss this. For me it is a concert experience that i will carry with me forever. My review of his February 2009 concert is testiment to that.

Presale tickets for Frontier Touring members go on sale Monday May 31 at 12pm.

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Filed under events & opportunities, poetry & publishing

Fishing for Richard Brautigan

This morning I took the time to listen in to Radio National’s Book Show dedicated to the late, great Richard Brautigan.

The show also focuses on the (relatively) new Australian literary journal, Torpedo, published by Falcon vs. Monkey, Falcon Wins. In 2009, Torpedo magazine, published a Richard Brautigan issue to commemorate the 25th anniversary of his untimely death. The issue features short fiction from Brautigan’s daughter Ianthe, alicia sometimes, Josephine Rowe, Chris Flynn and Adam Ford to name but a few and it also features a generous selection of Brautigan’s own short fiction and poetry.

You can also read an interview with Torpedo editor, Chris Flynn about how the issue came about.

Ah yes, listening to the words of Brautigan, makes for a fine start to any day… Wherever you may be, hope yours is a good one!

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Filed under poetry & publishing

Gee, you’re beautiful Richard Brautigan

These holidays, I have been drawn back into the madly beautiful world of Richard Brautigan. I had been revisiting his collection The Pill versus The Spring Hill Mine Disaster (after a friend picked up a beautiful first edition recently) and then while I was away in Tasmania, discovered a copy of Rommel Drives on Deep into Egypt for the grand price of $1.80. Both these collections combine the best and worst of Brautigan… and by worst I mean, there are some pieces in each collection that are throwaway doodles, but his best… his best is some of the most joyous, energetic and passionately-goofy writing you are ever likely to read.

Take this from Rommel Drives on Deep into Egypt:

Shellfish

Always spend a penny
as if you were spending a
     dollar
and always spend a dollar
as if you were spending
a wounded eagle and always
spend a wounded eagle as if
you were spending the very
     sky itself.

And check out this clip of Brautigan’s poem Gee, You’re So Beautiful It’s Starting To Rain (Brautigan himself is reading this one). One of his many aching love poems to Marcia (read the poem here); love, something that Brautigan struggled with all of his too-short life.

So, if like me, you are feeling drawn in to Brautigan’s mad beauty and you want to suspend reality for a while, you can read a great selection of his poems and other writing at his official site.

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Filed under interviews/artist profiles