Friday, 11 November 2011

All the Lights Playlist Part 3

Here's the third and final installment of the playlist to go with Clemens Meyer's short story collection All the Lights. Do go out and buy a copy, why don't you?

Story Eleven: Riding the Rails – two men who form a bond in prison meet up again on the outside and travel around Germany pulling petty crimes. The song: KD Lang’s Ridin’ the Rails – because this is how the two imagine themselves, a romantic couple of hobos. The title (which is a long way from the original “Wir reisen”) wasn’t inspired by the song, but it could have been.

Story Twelve: Your Hair Is Beautiful – a man abandons his wife, having fallen for a prostitute he believes to be Lithuanian. The song: Joe Cocker, You Are So Beautiful – because it’s ridiculous and obsessive and OTT and imagine someone saying something like that to you. You’d want to do something nasty to them too.

Story Thirteen: A Ship Will Come – a young asylum-seeker boxes her way up through life. The song: Iggy Pop’s Lust for Life – because it’s punchy and go-getting and there’s no resisting it. And it's in Trainspotting, which a few people have compared Clemens' writing to.

Story Fourteen: Carriage 29 – a wine salesman finds himself on a train and can’t quite work out what on earth he’s doing there. The song: The Beatles’ Helter Skelter – because this is one of those Clemens Meyer stories that whirls you round and makes you dizzy and brash with confusion, just like the protagonist.

Story fifteen: The Old Man Buries His Beasts – an old man kills his animals and says goodbye to his neighbours in a dying village. I have to admit I was stumped to find a song to go with this very precisely told, melancholy story. To I crowdsourced it and my colleague Shaun Whiteside came up with Randy Newman’s Old Man – the perfect match.

Anyway, thanks for your patience, and do excuse the rather strange link choices. It's partly because a lot of material isn't available for viewing in Germany due to Youtube restrictions.


X.Trapnel said...

You couldn't think of any way to work in Kanye's "All of the Lights"? Talk about low-hanging fruit! (And what about "Atomic" for "Your Hair is Beautiful"?) (Hopefully one of those links works in Germany ... I remember finding that extremely frustrating (as did this artist!)

X.Trapnel said...

... er, but what I meant to ask was, any chance the book will get US distribution?

kjd said...

Thanks X.! Low-hanging fruit indeed, but just not quite right for the stories.

US distribution is a bit tricky, I believe. What we need is for a US publisher to pick up the US rights and then they can go ahead and re-edit my translation into American and bring joy/depression to the entire United States with this fantastic and wonderful collection of short stories.