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Patti Smith live dates and events
The gig dates until December.

Patti Smith reviewed Haruki Murakami's new novel for the NY Times
Brooklyn Vegan (August 2014): "Patti reviewed Japanese author Haruki Murakami's new novel Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage for the NY Times.

Here's an excerpt: "On a first reading, "Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage" seems kin to Murakami's more minimalist novels "Sputnik Sweetheart" or "Norwegian Wood," but it does not really fall into that category. Nor is it written with the energetic vibe of "Pinball, 1973" or in the multidimensional vein of his masterpiece, "The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle." Here and there realism is tinged with the parallel worlds of "1Q84," particularly through dreams. The novel contains a fragility that can be found in "Kafka on the Shore," with its infinite regard for music. Hardly a soul writes of the listening and playing of music with such insight and tenderness. We are given a soundtrack: Liszt's "Le Mal du Pays," from "Years of Pilgrimage." A favored interpreter: Lazar Berman. A favored way to listen: vinyl on a turntable."

"This is a book for both the new and experienced reader. It has a strange casualness, as if it unfolded as Murakami wrote it; at times, it seems like a prequel to a whole other narrative. The feel is uneven, the dialogue somewhat stilted, either by design or flawed in translation. Yet there are moments of epiphany gracefully expressed, especially in regard to how people affect one another. "One heart is not connected to another through harmony alone," Tsukuru comes to understand. "They are, instead, linked deeply through their wounds. Pain linked to pain, fragility to fragility. There is no silence without a cry of grief, no forgiveness without bloodshed, no acceptance without a passage through acute loss." The book reveals another side of Murakami, one not so easy to pin down. Incurably restive, ambiguous and valiantly struggling toward a new level of maturation. A shedding of Murakami skin. It is not "Blonde on Blonde," it is "Blood on the Tracks." Read more

"Smith Uncovered: A Reinterpretation of the Songs of Patti Smith"
TAP Milwaukee (August 25th 2014): "On Oct. 18, Alverno Presents will present "Smith Uncovered: A Reinterpretation of the Songs of Patti Smith," the latest in its series (Stephen Foster, Marvin Gaye) of taking apart the music of greats and putting it back together. Betty Strigens of Testa Rosa will curate the concert, whose announced performers include members of Die Kreuzen, Hello Death and Nineteen Thirteen. Strigens and her collaborators have given themselves no small challenge: Smith's music -- both her songs and her style of performance -- is so personal and idiosyncratic. It will be fun to see what they come up with. The Alverno concert has given me the pe rfect opportunity -- or excuse -- to revisit Smith's music in a new series."

"Smith was born in Chicago in 1946, then grew up in Philadelphia and New Jersey. Her parents were working class (her mom a waitress) and raised Smith as a Jehovah's Witness. She reflected on the latter experience in a 2005 interview with the New York Times about her roots: " 'The song that most touches on my upbringing is "Gloria," ' she said, referring to the Van Morrison classic first recorded by Them and the opening track of 'Horses,' 'because it reflects my struggles with organized religion.' '' 'Religious education as a Jehovah's Witness is very scripturally centered -- we read the Bible quite a bit,' she said. 'I got a good education, but I didn't like the shackles.' " After graduating from high school, Smith attended Glassboro State Teachers College (now Rowan University) in New Jersey, but dropped out after she became pregnant. After giving birth in 1967, Smith placed her daughter for adoption. She worked on a factory assembly line (an experience that showed up in her early song "Piss Factory") to save up money to move to New York in 1967, where she met Robert Mapplethorpe, who became her roommate and lover and remained her friend until his death. Their relationship is the subject of her remarkable memoir, "Just Kids".

Just Kids available also an audio book read by Patti Smith herself
HarperCollins has released the book Just Kids also as an audio book with 10 hours / 9 CDs. The book is read by Patti Smith herself.

The publisher: "Just Kids begins as a love story and ends as an elegy. It serves as a salute to New York City during the late sixties and seventies and to its rich and poor, its hustlers and hellions. A true fable, it is a portrait of two young artists' ascent, a prelude to fame."

Patti Smith receives IAH Medal at Penn State
Onwardstate.com: "The Institute for the Arts and Humanities awarded its eighth annual "Medal for Distinguished Achievement" award to punk rock pioneer Patti Smith. The medal presentation was followed by with an eclectic Q&A session and, of course, a highly-anticipated acoustic performance by Smith and long-time guitarist Lenny Kaye."

(--) "Smith expressed her feelings about the current state of the world, calling out the "bullshit" of environmental destruction and political corruption. She also adopted unexpected optimism in regard to the potential of the rising generations, likening the digital age to the "new frontier," a "Wild West." "We're living in a time that never existed before. This is the era where everybody creates," she said."

'CBGB' movie features 65 songs
Rollingstone.com: "The famed downtown New York City music venue CBGB has been closed for seven years now, but its legacy lives on through the many iconic and enduring punk and New Wave acts who got their start there in the 1970s, among them the Ramones, Blondie, the Talking Heads, the Dead Boys, Television and Patti Smith."

(--) "Now the story of the Lower East Side club and its founder is being told in a new movie dramatization, CBGB, directed and co-written by Randall Miller. Among the actors are Alan Rickman (Hilly Kristal), Malin Akerman (Debbie Harry), Taylor Hawkins (Iggy Pop), Mickey Sumner (Patti Smith) and Rupert Grint (the Dead Boys' Cheetah Chrome). The movie will premiere in New York City at the CBGB Festival on October 8th before opening nationwide on the 11th."

(--) "Actress Mickey Sumner portrays punk poet Patti Smith. Sumner is the daughter of singer-bassist Gordon Sumner, better known as Sting, whose younger self, played by actor Keene McRae, is depicted in the movie with the Police. "We were having a hard time figuring out who can play Patti Smith, because it's a very specific look and a very iconic person," says Miller. "It turns out Mickey is a tremendous Patti Smith fan, loves her writing. She actually asked permission from Patti to play her. She looks amazing in it. She really got it down."

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
NME.com: The official soundtrack will be released on November 19. A song titled Capital Letter by Patti Smith will be featured on the soundtrack.

Also, the Huffington Post tells us that Another Day, Another Time: Celebrating the Music of "Inside Llewyn Davis" features music by Patti Smith.

Patti Smith contributes The Mermaid Song to Son of Rogue's Gallery
Read about the recording of pirate songs and listen to The Mermaid Song at the New Yorker website.

"At 66 Patti Smith shows no sign of mellowing"
The Guardian: "By 1978, she was heading towards mainstream stardom: Because The Night reached the top five in the UK and her Easter album the top 20. Then she gave it all up. Why? Three reasons, she says. In 1977, she fell off the stage, fractured her back in four places and broke her skull (she needed 42 stitches in her head). She was never as mobile again. Then she fell in love with Fred "Sonic" Smith and married him. Finally, she says, she found fame too corrosive. "I didn't have time to read, I wasn't studying, wasn't writing. I was basically promoting, going to radio stations, performing, battling bronchitis because there was so much smoke in venues. I thought, I see a lot of potential fame and fortune, but I don't see a lot of human evolution. Nothing will stifle your human evolution more than fame and fortune." How? "It doesn't do a whole lot for making you a better person. I found myself being more demanding, or spoilt." Was she horrible? She balks at the suggestion. "No, just impatient, agitated. The main thing was I didn't think I was producing anything of extraordinary worth."

"Patti Smith in Bronte tribute gig"
BBC News: "The US artist was in Howarth, Yorkshire, to play a fundraising concert for the Bronte society, which runs a museum dedicated to Charlotte and Emily's books."

The Coral Sea performance on May 18th 2013
"To celebrate the exhibition opening of Patti Smith: The Coral Sea, the Contemporary Arts Center is excited to present an intimate, one-night-only performance by the artist. For this special engagement, Smith will be accompanied by her bassist and on piano by her daughter, Jesse Smith, on piano for a rare performance of The Coral Sea, as well as various songs from her extensive and celebrated repertoire." The events take place at The Contemporary Arts Center in Ohio.

News archives

1Updated in September 2014

 

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