Sunday, March 2, 2014

What's your favourite?

I made a delightful discovery this week that the rest of the world might have already been aware of except for me.
As you may have noticed from previous posts  I have read all of the books in the Canada Reads 2014 contest  for the first time this year. The actual contest begins this coming week on CBC radio on Q with Jian Gomeshi. You may also have noticed that I am trying to pay attention to music more than ever before.

CBC radio brought the two together for me this week which I thought was very considerate of them.  Apparently they have done this same thing for other Canada Reads contestants in the past and I obviously missed it. That's what happens when a person isn't really paying attention.

What they have done is have each author choose music that they believe suits their novel.  They also have had each author on various book programs to discuss their novels. Some authors are much better writers than they are speakers. Although each book has a defender in the contest and some of those people are better speakers than the others so it may level the playing field a bit if everyone listens to everyone else's authors. Much like I find Cate Blanchette. She is an amazingly versatile actor but I have never taken to her in any of her interviews when she is herself. She doesn't seem to have any personality which is maybe why she can so easily become someone else in a movie.

But this is not what I am delighted by right now. As the announcer discussed Rawi's musical choices I realized that if I wanted to be a published author and right now I do, it would be a good thing if I knew some music so when I get asked to share pieces that suit my novel I may at least know where to begin. So now I have two reasons to continue to listen consistently to music. The first to create new pathways in my brain but also so I don't appear to be a musically illiterate person should one of my future novels get chosen for Canada Reads. It is important to be prepared for these things I believe. I wonder if these authors and the ones before them had to ask their musical friends who had actually read their books if they could suggest some music? I immediately thought of my friends Gary and Rick who know lots of music, or Wendy and Barb who can rhyme off lyrics at the mere suggestion of an idea. I could call on them if I needed to if I can get them to read the book first.

 Some of the choices that were made by this year's authors were less than mainstream(in my limited music world)  which I found quite wonderful but boy you would have to know where to look to find some of these. Of course then I began to worry that I may be the only would-be author who isn't well versed in some genre of music and I may have to pack it in since I am so far behind the rest before I barely get started. I won't give up just yet. Resilience is becoming the buzz word in certain business circles and I will practice this trait throughout this important process. 

I am including the list, compliments of the CBC blog,with a favourite music video for each of the books. You may prefer one of the other choices so I would encourage you to go have a listen to them. My choices were based on how closely I believed the song matched my impressions of the story. If you haven't read the books yet it may give you a feeling for the story line.

                                                                      The Kathleen Winter playlist :

                                                                         Pete Seeger, "Little Boxes."
                                               Gabriel Faure, "Le Cantique de Jean Racine." 
                                                       Kat Goldman, "Annabel."
                                                           Goldfrapp, "Annabel."
                                                     Antony & Johnsons, "Bird Gerhl."
                                                          Blondie, "The Tide is High."

                                                      Goldfrapp, “Annabel.” (A song inspired by Kathleen Winter's book.)
                                                      How great is that to have someone write a song to go with your book!!

The Joseph Boyden playlist:
JS. Bach, "The Art of the Fugue:Contrapunctus 1 by Glen Gould
Heather Dale, "The Huron Carol,"
Taguaq. "Growl."
Robbie Robertson. "Fallen Angel."
A Tribe Called Red, "Electric Pow Wow Drum."

 Robbie Robertson, “Fallen Angel.”

                                                                                     The Esi Edugyan playlist:

                                          Louis Armstrong and His Hot Five, "West End Blues."
S                                               Sidney Bechet, "Characteristic Blues."
                        Frankie Trumbauer and His Orchestra feat. Bix Beiderbecke, "Singin' the Blues."
                                   Bill Coleman feat, Django Reinhardt, "Bill Coleman Blues."
                          The SA and SS choir conducted by Alfred Engel, "The Horst Wessel Lied."
                     Miles Davis, "Prayer (Oh Doctor Jesus)," from the album Porgy and Bess



                                                                                                          Louis Armstrong and His Hot Five, “West End Blues." 

  The Rawi Hage playlist:

Amir Amiri, "Sob Gah (The Dawn)"
Fela Kuti, "Sorrow Tears and Blood" Orginal Sufferhead
Thelonius Monk, "Straight, No Chaser."
Mashrou' Leila, "Obwa" fro the album Mashrou' Leila
Lhasa, "Rising" from Lhasa de Sela

Mashrou' Leila "Obwa"

The Margaret Atwood playlist:

                                 Oville Stober, "Hymns of the God's Gardeners," selections from The God's Gardeners Oral Hymn book, lyrics by Margaret Atwood
Kate & Anna McGarrigle, "(Talk to Me of) Mendocino
Metallica, "Whiskey in the Jar."
Alanis Morissette. "Utopia" Under the Rug Swept.
Leonard Cohen, "The Future" the title track 

   Oville Stober, “Hymns of the God’s Gardeners;" selections from 
The God’s Gardeners Oral Hymn book, lyrics by Margaret Atwood. 

                        Enjoy! I am off to find some songs to go with my first novel. 
    PS. Now that I have seen the Oscar's I feel badly about what I said about Cate Blanchett (see above). Her acceptance speech was pretty good although Sandra Bullock wasn't sure if her comment to her was a dig or simply an odd compliment. Hard to be eloquent in front of so many people when you have won I am sure!!

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