Friday, October 31, 2008

Hard Times Revisited


Farewell, Studs Terkel (5/18/1912-10/31/2008). I'm familiar with three of his books, all great reads, still very relevant:

Giants of Jazz (1957; 2006 revised edition). John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, Dizzie Gillespie, Billie Holiday, Duke Ellington, et al.

Hard Times: An Oral History of the Great Depression (1970+). If this one might seem eerily appropriate in today's world, that's because it is.

Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do (1974+). I doubt the publishers will add a slim new chapter on Joe the Plumber anytime soon, but the first edition does cover a broad spectrum of people, and includes a pithy section featuring one of my favorite living character actors, Rip Torn.


Louis Studs Terkel, RIP. And GObama!

Today's Rune: Signals.

8 comments:

the walking man said...

See ya Studs. You are still the voice for the "common man."

Sidney said...

Sad news about him.

Johnny Yen said...

"Working" was one of those books that changed my worldview and life.

I was lucky enough to spend a day with him nearly ten years ago when I emceed an event at the Harold Washinton Library Brance (the main library here in Chicago). He and his lovely wife (who died about a year later during heart surgery) were interesting people who had a sense of history and civic responsibility. He appeared gratis at an event the group I co-chaired had, guaranteeing a great turn-out.

Charles Gramlich said...

Sorry to hear this. I must confess, however, that I thought he was already dead. I have some of his books but so far have never gotten around to reading them.

Merelyme said...

I have not read that last book you mentioned...I need to get that one.

lulu said...

The word Legendary gets tossed around whenever anyone famous dies. In the case of Studs though, it's an apt description. Like Johnny I had the opportunity to meet him once, and saw him around the city several times. What an awesome guy.

Erik Donald France said...

Thanks all, for the comments!

Charles, ditto. for me.

Johnny and Lulu, that's so cool! Lucky!

Cheers all . . .

Anonymous said...

I have a nephew in law who is Frank the plumber. His biggest problem is getting people to pay for his work! He is getting shafted by the very kind of people who think Joe is an icon. Kip