Mixtape Mashup September Releases

11 Sep

It’s September, which means it’s time for another Mixtape Mashup! September is looking to be an exciting month for books and albums, so we’ve gone ahead and made some pairings for your reading and listening enjoyment.

1. The Revolution of Evelyn Serrano by Sonia Manzano
Scholastic, September 1, 2012

14 year old Rosa “call me Evelyn” Serrano is embarrassed by her mother and detached from her Puerto Rican heritage but when her Abuelita (Grandmother) comes to town Evelyn’s world and attitude are rocked to the core. I didn’t like Evelyn much at first and thought that would make the book hard to read but her transformation comes quick. Witness to the political movement that is being sparked in her neighborhood, Evelyn soon begins to understand the fragile relationships that connect family, politics and her own personal identity.

Kreayshawn –  Somethin’ Bout Kreay
Sony UK, September 25, 2012

I don’t know a lot about Kreayshawn but I know she is a white female rapper, arguably a minority in the wolrd of Hip Hop, and I’m curious to see how her career develops.  Rosa-call-me-Evelyn could use a peer who isn’t afraid disrupt the norm and inspires her to color outside the lines. This is the track that put her on the map:

Lupe Fiasco – Food and Liquor II: The Great American Rap Album Pt. 1
Atlantic, September 25, 2012

Lupe is great listening for this book because of his strong loyalties to his city, Chicago, and the relationship Hip Hop as a form of expression has with revolutions of people, places and institutions. This album may be especially poignant as he recently suggested it might be his last when speaking out about the current climate of Hip Hop music and the epidemic of violence in his native Chicago. Check it. This is the opening track from his second album, The Cool:

2. Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures by Emma Straub
Riverhead, September 4, 2012

It is the late 30s and Elsa Emerson marries off her family’s farm in Door County, Wisconsin to follow her dreams in Hollywood via her young husband. Barely 21 and pregnant with her second child she is discovered by studio head Irving Green and her life is forever changed. Emma Straub’s debut novel is lyrical anthology of one girl’s struggle to fit between two different worlds and a beautiful story of the relationships between sisters, mothers, and girlfriends.

The Avett BrothersThe Carpenter
Universal Republic, September 11, 2012

Two brothers from North Carolina who toe the line between citizen and celebrity, country and city, artist and carpenter. Since making acquaintances with them in Charlotte, NC (from where they hail) their music has inspired and excited me especially their self-reflection and sweet respect for the ladies. They have received more mainstream success in the last few years, split like Laura between their past and their future, but I trust they know where home is. Here’s a song off their new album:

3. Drama by Raina Telgemeier
GRAPHIX, September 1, 2012

Em and I are both excited for the new graphic novel by Raina Telgemeier. Just the cover conjures my nostalgia for Daria. Like Callie, I also loved theater but was a terrible singer, and never really found my place in the “drama” clique. Good Reads describes Drama as “another graphic novel featuring a diverse set of characters that humorously explores friendship, crushes, and all-around drama.” Sweet.

Amanda Palmer and The Grand Theft Orchestra – Theatre is Evil
8ft. records, September 11, 2012

Amanda Fucking Palmer, as she is also known, releases her third solo album today and it is EPIC! There are so many reasons I love her, one being that on her Wikipedia page there is a “Controversies” section. Trivia moment! Palmer is an independent artist who funded her album on Kickstarter and became the first musician to pass the million-dollar mark on the site by raising 1.2 million. Extra Credit –  her album is being released with a companion book of art!!! This new video from her new album is sure to have people talking and I love the way she blends visual art and music to create her vision:

No Doubt – Push and Shove
Interscope Records, September 25, 2012

Em is more excited about this release than I am but I have always liked and respected No Doubt. Formed by High School friends the current members have been playing together since 1989 – basically their entire careers and lives. Having never broken up and continuously putting out top selling albums is quite the feat in the music industry. I appreciate that Stefani’s drama manifests only in her style and stage presence. You can download the first single “Settle Down” on iTunes but this is still the JAM!

4. The Brides of Rollrock Island by Margo Lanangan
Knopf Books for Young Readers, September 11, 2012

First of all, Rollrock Island? If going purely by name alone I would totally want to live there. But after reading the first line of the book’s description “On remote Rollrock Island, men go to sea to make their livings–and to catch their wives,” I think I’ll stay on the mainland. Apparently, there are witches and women empowered in other ways and the result sounds like a fascinating tale of men and women and the cruel beauty of human relationships.

Calexico – Algiers
Anti- Records, September 11, 2012

I discovered Calexico via their 2005 collaboration with Iron & Wine, In the Reins, and have since been a fan. You can listen to two tracks from Algiers on Spotify but I have to offer this track as a listening companion for The Brides of Rollrock Island:

5. What’s Left of Me by Kat Zhang
HarperCollins, September 18, 2012

This novel is the first of a new series: The Hybrid Chronicles. I am 5 chapters in to this book and it is super freaking interesting. Granted, I am not an avid “sci-fi” reader but the idea of two souls existing in one body is something I can relate to, as is Addie and Eva’s complicated relationship to each other as sisters. Both want to take care of the other, make the other happy; both think the other deserves freedom but the power is ultimately beyond them. Or is it? I think there is an interesting subtext here around pregnancy and the abortion issue – as Goodreads puts it: “What’s Left of Me tells the story of a fifteen-year-old girl fighting for her right to survive…”.

Cat Power – Sun
Matador Records, September 4, 2012

Cat Power aka Chan Marshall has always appeared to struggle with her public and private personas. Seems like everyone I know has a story about her erratic behavior. Known for her sad, simple songs on piano her 9th album Sun is definitely a brighter spot in the Cat Power catalogue. Listen to the first single – Ruinhere

David Byrne & St. Vincent – Love This Giant
4AD, September 11, 2012

Another hybrid, this is the first collaborative effort by Talking Heads frontman David Byrne and St. Vincent (Annie Erin Clark). It’s a surprising pairing considering their genre and generational differences, which is why I am curious to hear it. Here’s the first video, and first track, off Love This Giant:

2 Responses to “Mixtape Mashup September Releases”

  1. VeganYANerds 12. Sep, 2012 at 6:15 am #

    Thanks for introducing me to a bunch of new books! I hope you enjoy The Brides of Rollrock Island, it’s an Aussie book, and I’ve started it but didn’t get far!

  2. Em 17. Sep, 2012 at 10:31 am #

    Ah man, I can’t get enough of the dance moves in the Who video. So good.

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