I recieved a somewhat incomprehensible voicemail last week, laced with profanity, and of course from an anonymous caller who didn't leave a call-back number, but one part of that diatribe posed the question: "What kind of half-assed blog are you running over there?"
Well, I suppose it is kind of half-assed, since I haven't posted a blog entry since March...
But that is history, now.
I'm up to the challenge of submitting a whole-assed blog, for at least today.
And I will start with full disclosure: I am friends with the author and the publisher of the recently self-published book that I'm about to discuss in the following paragraphs. In fact, the publisher/publicist was my roommate when we both worked for The Georgetown Times in the mid-to-late '90s. And the author is his wife, a former bartender at Land's End in Georgetown.
And it was the port city of Georgetown where I ventured a couple of sunny Saturdays ago - Aug. 30 to be exact - for a book-signing event for Kelly Owen's "The College Chronicles: Freshman Milestones" at Clock Tower Books.
I got there a little bit early, and roamed down Front Street - which has changed quite a bit since I lived on Cannon Street, and was bustling with foot and vehicular traffic, despite the fire that took down a block of buildings on the river-side of the street, leaving a gaping hole.
I met up with Kelly Owen, her husband Matt Owen, and their mothers, who were having lunch at The River Room, another spot I love but haven't been to in quite some time, and I guzzeled down a Red Stripe as they finished dining.
After that, it was on to Clock Tower Books, which is across the street from the iconic Rice Museum clock tower.
A flurry of activity crowded the tiny book store, with many of Kelly Owen's former teachers from Georgetown High School, relatives and others from her Grand Strand ties (including me), came to wish her well and get a signed copy of the book.
Another disclaimer: I have not yet read the 572-page novel, which is the first of a planned four-part series. But, I have started it and I'm on the first chapter, which is also available for free at www.TheCollegeChronicles.com.
The book is, naturally, set in Charleston, where Owen lives and has been an instructor at the College of Charleston, and according to a press release, "the first book chronicles freshman Cadence Cooper's journey at fictional Charlestown College and throughout the historic and highly decorated Holy City." It, according to said press release, "portrays a student lifestyle in which the subjects of study range from sex and sociology to beer and biology." In other words: college.
And the really cool part about Owen's book to me is she also commissioned a couple of Charleston-area musicians to record original songs based on her writings, which tie in thematically to the novel. One of the songs is "Skip Lines," with the lyrics written by Kelly Owen and set to music by Keon Masters, lead singer of Brave Baby.
The other song is actually featured in the book, entitled "Strummin'" and was set to music by John Shields, lead singer of Long Miles. Both musicians are Owen's former students.
Both tracks, which I would describe as power pop, will be available for download at www.TheCollegeChronicles.com, where you can also see live versions performed at a recent book-signing shindig in Charleston.
The e-book version of "The College Chronicles" is $5.99 available at www.amazon.com, www.barnesandnoble.com and iTunes. You can order the paperback directly from Boxer Publishing, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Clock Tower Books, 105 Screven Street, Georgetown.
LESS MIKE, MORE MUSIC
On my morning commute today, I noticed that I actually heard music on 96.1, WKZQ-FM and thought it must be a mistake. I consciously haven't tuned into KZQ in the mornings lately, because I don't really want to hear ESPN's "Mike and Mike" show. Then, a few seconds later, I heard a spot explaining that the syndicated "Mike and Mike" show (a terrible fit for a modern rock station, in my opinion), can still be heard on sister station, 1450 A.M., while KQZ is now playing "KZQ Music." I don't know if this change is permanent, but I like it - no offense to the Mikes.
As is the tradition here at Manic Monday, we outline some early-week entertainment options for you, so here goes.
It's the first regular season edition of Monday Night Football, and it's a doubleheader - twice as many excuses to get out of the house and patronize your neighborhood sports bar. First up, it's the New York Football Giants vs. the Detroit Lions at 7:10 p.m. on ESPN, followed by the San Diego Chargers-Arizona Cardinals tilt at 10:20 p.m., also on ESPN.
I judged this competition several years ago (I know, rough life, innit?) so I can vouch for it:
Find out who can shake their money-maker the twerkiest on Wednesday as it is time for Burlesque 2014 - Battle of The Masters Girls, a competition between the dancers of the renowned Myrtle Beach gentlemen’s club. The action gets started at 9 p.m. Wednesday. The Masters Gentlemen’s Club is at 1901 Mr. Joe White Avenue, Myrtle Beach. Call 916-0972. You can get in free by taking the advertisement on page 19 of the latest edition of Weekly Surge.