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Rustum Kozain

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

Have you ever seen a robin weep?

For all the sad sacks in Cape Town, I’ll be a guest on The Unhappy Hour this Sunday, 22 February (6-8 pm SA), playing some sad songs with host, Danie Marais, a poet not unknown to melancholia.

My contribution to the playlist will be an eclectic mix, including music from ‘eggs, roll ‘em over and a packet of Kents’ Tom Waits, a very young but drinking again Aretha Franklin, predictably some Morrissey, sixteen, clumsy and shy, the misunderstood Chumbawamba, as well as the misunderstood Sade, a melancholic moment from Spike Lee’s Mo’ Better Blues, some misnamed world music, including Susana Baca’s rendition of a sad Vallejo poem, and the blue but golden voices of ‘so lonesome all the time’ Linda Ronstadt and Margo Timmins, yearning for that old, familiar whistle of the 8.15. I will also read two or three sad poems.

So, gear up for blue Monday and tune in: Bushradio, 89.5 FM. For those in Amsterdam, Kalkbaai and other sad towns of the world, Bushradio provides a two-hour internet stream, perfect for this most sad, somewhat literary show.

rustum-never-sleeps.jpg

(flyer by Clive E. Smith, co-host of the Unhappy Hour, now on sabbatical)

 

Recent comments:

  • <a href="http://louisgreenberg.com" rel="nofollow">Louis Greenberg</a>
    Louis Greenberg
    February 18th, 2009 @11:11 #
     
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    Rustum, what do we do if we have badwidth? Is there a podcast? Can you, like, save the stream and post it later? I'd like to hear that.

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  • <a href="http://rustumkozain.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Rustum Kozain</a>
    Rustum Kozain
    February 18th, 2009 @11:20 #
     
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    Louis, I'm not sure of the production machinations, but I'm hoping that the show does get recorded and perhaps one can podcast it somewhere (new territory for me).

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  • <a href="http://richarddenooy.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Richard de Nooy</a>
    Richard de Nooy
    February 18th, 2009 @11:30 #
     
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    Springsteen's Nebraska always makes me blissfully unhappy.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rqYjgRyraaM&feature=related

    Ears wide at around 2.00 mins. - "radio's jammed up with talkshow stations..."

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  • <a href="http://helenmoffett.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Helen</a>
    Helen
    February 18th, 2009 @11:46 #
     
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    I'm looking forward to Rustum's robin. Are you going to read Kingdom of Rain??

    Richard, that clip was haunting [Helen reminiscence alert]... nearly 20 years ago, very wet-behind-the-ears, I went to the Nelson Mandela 70th birthday concert at Wembley, and there I heard The Boss tell the haunting story of how his dad always used to say "Wait till the army gets you". And how finally the draft papers came, and off he went to war -- and failed the medical. Hitchhiked home to his astonished family, and his dad said two words: "I'm glad."

    Sad music can be cathartic. Three days after Bob's death, Lesley Marx (yes, by some amazing coincidence, she was passing through Emory) gave me Springsteen's The Seeger Sessions. I would pull the curtains, play "Shenandoah" and cry until I could no longer see out my eyes. It was helpful in a weird kind of way.

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  • <a href="http://rustumkozain.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Rustum Kozain</a>
    Rustum Kozain
    February 18th, 2009 @12:30 #
     
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    Richard, embarrassingly, I don't know enough Boss, but I know 'State Trooper' via the Cowboy Junkies's much slowed down version. Can't find it on the tube, but give a listen to their rendition of Lightning Hopkins's 'Shining Moon' to give you an idea:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ttYSs27FlGU

    On their second album, they covered 'Sweet Jane' and the apocrypha mention that Reed liked their version:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BHRFZFmEq9o

    Helen, nope. 'Talking Jazz' and two newish ones. I'm giving a reading, alongside Ingrid de Kok, this evening for a group of teachers from the UK. A closed affair, unfortunately, but I will be reading 'Kingdom of Rain'.

    I'm quite ambivalent about reading that poem to audiences who have heard it - I start feeling like a one-trick pony fused with a parrot. With a fresh audience, it changes the game and influences and refreshes the poem for me.

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  • <a href="http://seanbadal.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Sean</a>
    Sean
    February 18th, 2009 @12:35 #
     
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    when leaves begin to fall...
    actually I have a crackling version of Elvis doing that song on the Aloha from Hawaii album, brings tears to my eyes.
    I hear Kris Kristoferson's version is not that bad either..

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  • <a href="http://rustumkozain.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Rustum Kozain</a>
    Rustum Kozain
    February 18th, 2009 @12:40 #
     
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    Cowboy Junkies's version is heartstoppingly slow and full of dull aches.

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  • <a href="http://www.moxyland.com" rel="nofollow">Lauren Beukes</a>
    Lauren Beukes
    February 18th, 2009 @14:02 #
     
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    Rustum, normally the radio station is able to make a digital MP3 recording of the broadcast and burn it to CD for you. Just get their permission to use it and ask IN ADVANCE. Cape Talk have granted me persmission to post interviews they did with me online.

    (TYPO DEFINTIONS: persmission: when it's a bit of a drunken mission to get permission)

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  • <a href="http://richarddenooy.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Richard de Nooy</a>
    Richard de Nooy
    February 18th, 2009 @14:15 #
     
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    Loving the Cowboy Junkies. Their sound is remarkably similar to the doleful ditties we produce at our jam sessions. Super-slow sounds give the singer time to improvise lyrics. "I'm dreaming a dead man's dreams / I'm screaming a dying man's screams..." I'm incapable of coming up with anything vaguely comical when I sing. It's sad.

    If you're going to get yourself one Springsteen album, let it be Nebraska.

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  • <a href="http://helenmoffett.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Helen</a>
    Helen
    February 18th, 2009 @16:17 #
     
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    Oh wow, how can I missed the Cowboy Junkies all these years? That girl has got the sweetest voice. (Bang goes the rest of this month's bandwidth.) The paralytically depressed guitarist is hysterical.

    Rustum, re Kingdom of Rain as parlour trick: I hear you. Yet I've heard you read it four times, and every time I've heard something new, and every time I cry in a different place. When I find myself repeating the emotional response Pavlovian-style, then it will be time to listen to something fresh. Have fun tonight.

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  • <a href="http://orionspur.za.net" rel="nofollow">itwriter</a>
    itwriter
    February 18th, 2009 @16:29 #
     
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    Dear Rustum friend, I don't go in for these wussy pityfests. While a pacifist by default, I prefer more violently cathartic methods of self repair. Such as immolating my ears with the awful beauty of progressive metal by Opeth and then venturing forth to say unpopular things. Come on -- did you never want to give Morrissey a snot klap? Wouldn't it be better for him and all his sniffling ilk to arise from their beds, ship out on a Sea Shepherd and ram the shit out of a Japanese whaler? I'm just asking.

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  • Ben - Editor
    Ben - Editor
    February 18th, 2009 @16:36 #
     
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    I'd like to request you play one or two Silver Jews songs, if you can find them: "Trains Across the Sea", "Random Rules", "How to Rent a Room", "Corduroy Suit", etc.

    If the Joos are beyond reach, what about Townes van Zandt's "No Place to Fall" - ?

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  • <a href="http://rustumkozain.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Rustum Kozain</a>
    Rustum Kozain
    February 18th, 2009 @16:42 #
     
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    Itwriter, but you do like music, though, don't you?

    It will be my first visit to the studio and my mother taught me first impressions last. Surely it will be more cathartic for everyone involved that, following these first impressions, and should there be future visits, I play The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady then.

    And, despite it being about a coastal town, Everyday is Like Sunday reminds me of Sundays in Paarl; it's like bloodletting...

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  • <a href="http://orionspur.za.net" rel="nofollow">itwriter</a>
    itwriter
    February 18th, 2009 @16:44 #
     
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    Oh, so this is an exercise in stealth! Be sure to play some tracks from Amused to Death on your second gig, then :-)

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  • <a href="http://orionspur.za.net" rel="nofollow">itwriter</a>
    itwriter
    February 18th, 2009 @16:53 #
     
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    Oh, and here's a little thing I wrote on Opeth, in case you were wondering:

    http://orionspur.za.net/?p=704

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  • <a href="http://rustumkozain.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Rustum Kozain</a>
    Rustum Kozain
    February 18th, 2009 @16:54 #
     
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    Beneditor, the playlist has already been sent to the production and licensing guys.

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  • <a href="http://sarahlotz.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Sarah Lotz</a>
    Sarah Lotz
    February 18th, 2009 @17:06 #
     
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    Berloody hell. Chumbawamba. My brother and I always said that we'd have tubthumping played at our funerals ('I get knocked down, but I get up again'). Although this song is why they're misunderstood. Good working class punk band.

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  • <a href="http://rustumkozain.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Rustum Kozain</a>
    Rustum Kozain
    February 20th, 2009 @14:05 #
     
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    Interesting. One of the ads that kicks in for this post is an ad for a "Muslim matrimonial" site. They must think I'm sad and lonely.
    (This comment may be construed as a bump; does that make me sad and lonely too?) Richard?

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  • <a href="http://helenmoffett.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Helen</a>
    Helen
    March 2nd, 2009 @00:33 #
     
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    Dear Sad and Lonely, I am a new Cowboy Junkies fan. I can't get "Sweet Jane" out of my head, and tonight, I found Eva Cassidy's cover of Fleetwood Mac's "For You" and played it with the volume all the way up and remembered slow dancing with the boy I loved at 16. Does this make me Sentimental and Pathetic?

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  • <a href="http://richarddenooy.book.co.za" rel="nofollow">Richard de Nooy</a>
    Richard de Nooy
    March 2nd, 2009 @02:12 #
     
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    May I join your pathetic club if I admit that this is the song I most frequently sing in the shower?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfqlG9fd4rw

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