But I write for myself, for my own pleasure. And I want to be left alone to do it. - J.D. Salinger ^(;,;)^
I enjoyed this exploration of music with David Byrne as the talking head, gently guiding the listener through how music (and the music business) work(s).
Like several nonfiction books I've read/listened to lately, my big complaint is I wish he just gave us more, dug a bit deeper, and perhaps hired a better editor. I like that the book was infused with Byrnes' own populist, funky, musical biases. It seemed autistically casual. Like talking to a really open person who isn't trying to hide or pull the shades on his own past. He didn't shy away from his own mistakes and his own life. He used Talking Heads and his own albums as examples of the different ways music can be done and sold. His interests allow this book to move from punk to African music to soundtracks, etc.
One of my favorite themes of Byrne's reminded me of the last book I read (The World Beyond Your Head: On Becoming an Individual in an Age of Distraction). David Byrne seemed passionate about not just music alone, but music's place in our social networks. How music is both a communication with others and reflective of our community. In his more zen moments he even rambles on about the music of the Universe, etc. Byrne's biases were occasionally annoying. He did seem to carry a pretty large dark spot right on-top of classic music's basic repertoire. His politics, or musical reactions to politics, also seems a bit naïve. But all is forgiven, in the end. This is a guy who is not afraid to put himself WAY out there, describe the scene as he sees it, and figure out a way to make the people around him want to dance. And THAT I guess says a lot and hides a multitude of minor sins as we dance into the darkness.