JUST BACK from San Francisco, where the job was to talk about Los Angeles — a Los Angeles that only lives in memory now. Reading these Los Angeles stories brought back the feeling of looking at old photographs. Not just the people in them, but their environment. These L.A. stories capture what’s hinted at in those old photographs. Not just the event — the sparsely decorated Christmas tree, the circus of the first birthday, the paid-in-cash new car — but the mood of rooms and what the fine details that they hold, the gardens and the toys; the bikes resting in the driveway, the tools on the lawn, the food on the kitchen counter, the vast openness of a city street still yet-to-be re-imagined, crowded, gentrified.
It’s all about atmosphere and sense of place as only a musician with a keen ear for such delicate matters could figure out how to evoke on a page.