Live Fast, Die Young by Chris Price, Joe Harland

By Chris Price, Joe Harland

Disillusioned to benefit that resort California isn't truly within the telephone book, radio manufacturers Chris and Joe get to the bottom of to find the genuine spirit of rock and roll the United States. Roof down and stereo up, they force coast to coast on a project to 'live the music'. they are going to promote their souls to the satan at the similar crossroads as Robert Johnson, flavor the loneliness of the 'Wichita Lineman' (and the fried peanut butter sandwich that comprehensive off The King), hang around with the spirit of Johnny profit his personal living room and, sitting on a jetty by means of an alligator-infested lake, sing 'Happy Birthday' to country-rock musician Gram Parsons. yet first they need to examine the ukulele, develop preposterous facial hair and fail to get into the Chateau Marmont with a emerging popstar – and that's simply day one.

It's a story of friendship demonstrated to the restrict, nice melodies, excellent lyrics and noble myths.

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Where can the American satirist operate today? Not on television, seldom if ever in the movies, and on the stage only if he is willing to play the buffoon. But the novel remains; and it would be good to see those writers with a talent for satire (Randall Jarrell for one) strike boldly at the large targets, without that vitiating diffidence peculiar to the con- 30 State of the Art temporary American novelist. ), but we don't know or want to know any senators, bishops, atomic scientists; as for psychiatrists-well, we like ours: he is a Jungian.

But the romantic-puritan stereotype dies hard. The misbehavior of the artist thrills the romantic; his subsequent suffering and punishment satisfy the puritan. Yet today new situations exist, and the old archetypes, never true, seem less relevant than ever. To be outside the World is not necessarily a virtue. To be in the World does not necessarily mean a loss of craft, a fall from grace, a fatness of soul. William Faulkner's thirty years as a movie writer affected his novels not at all. He could do both.

But this state of siege is hardly permanent. For better or worse, the writers are very much in the real world, and the politicians know it. Simultaneously with their new-found celebrity, the writers have become the beneficiaries of a peculiar crisis in American publishing. Fifteen years ago the mass magazines lost much of their advertising revenue to television. To survive, they were forced to make radical changes. At the prodding of young editors, they began to raid the literary quarterlies. Overnight the work of writers like Bellow, Baldwin, and Paul Goodman replaced those cheerful fictions and bland commentaries that had made the popular magazines the despair of the intellectuals for half a century.

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