They Might Be Giants’ Flood is 30!

I thought I would begin 2020 with something joyous — the 30th anniversary of They Might Be Giants‘ Flood, the band’s first album with a major label (Elektra), and the one that launched them into mainstream Anglo-American culture. (“Birdhouse in Your Soul” reached #6 on the UK charts and #3 on the US Modern Rock charts.)…

The Land Where We Invisibly Rule: They Might Be Giants’ Glean

Man, you never lost your edge. — They Might Be Giants, “All the Lazy Boyfriends,” Glean (2015) They Might Be Giants‘ Glean — due out April 21 — is the band’s best record since its 1986 eponymous debut, affectionately known as The Pink Album (due to its pink cover). Like that record, it has a range of musical styles,…

I Love the ’80s: Dystopia, Nostalgia, and Ready Player One

Kansas State University’s “K-State First” asked me to talk to undergraduates about Ernest Cline‘s Ready Player One (2011), this year’s “First Book,” at a “Beyond the Classroom” event.  So, this past Tuesday (Oct. 1st), I did.  In case it may be of interest to others, I’m posting my (admittedly somewhat hastily assembled) talk here, along with…

Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss: a mix

Here is a mix to celebrate the publication of my new biography, Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss: How an Unlikely Couple Found Love, Dodged the FBI, and Transformed Children’s Literature (2012).  Its official publication date is today (Sept. 1st), though it’s actually been available for a few weeks now. Given my own interest in music, it’s curious…

Thirty Jaunty Songs

Yes.  Spring is here, which means flowers blooming and (for academics, at least) the rapidly accelerating roller-coster that is the second half of the semester.  It is thus time for some jaunty music.  Enjoy! 1)    You Meet the Nicest People in Your Dreams       Fats Waller and His Rhythm (1939)    2:51…

Children’s Literature + Music = Great Album Covers

Many children’s writers and illustrators have created covers for albums.  Below, we’ll look at a dozen or so of these artists.  As is ever the case with any art posted on this website, the artwork belongs to the artists.  Visit their websites!  Buy prints!  Buy their books!  (I’ve included websites for each artist.)  Enjoy! Saul…

They Might Be Geniuses

They might indeed be geniuses.  What other band has, in the last quarter century, produced such consistently great music?  Music for films, TV, adults, children, and mammals of any description?  I ask you: Who? Commemorating new music by They Might Be Giants (who, dear reader, are this blogger’s favorite band), here are nine TMBG songs…