I remember racing against the sun to reach the Badlands before nightfall but I didn’t make it because I kept pulling over to photograph rusty gas stations and lonely motels in towns with names like Alliance and Interior. When I finally arrived at the edge of South Dakota, the bluffs and spires lay out there unseen, crouching in the dark. In a bright motel lobby, a little radio behind bulletproof glass played the American hit parade. That night I dreamt of Natalie Wood on an endless loop, leaping and yelling “Hit your lights” on the edge of a cliff, her arms swinging through the headlights again and again.
Here are two pitched-down dub 45s that meander through a field of mid-century blues and ballads, paired with big sheets of reverb, vinyl crackle, moments of silence, and five variations on the idea of a blue moon. Best served in headphones after dark.
01. A Rocket in Dub – Rocket #8 on 33⅓
02. Betty Lavette – Let Me Down Easy
03. Don Percival – One More Kiss
04. Roy Orbison – Crying
05. Dave “Diddle” Day – Blue Moon Baby
06. Pole – Fahren on 33⅓
07. The Cascades – Rhythm of the Rain
08. Françoise Hardy – Voilà
09. Dirty Beaches – Lord Knows Best
10. The Ronettes – Keep On Dancin’
11. Dirty Beaches – True Blue
12. Oscar Peterson – Blue Moon
13. Elvis – Blue Moon in Kentucky
14. Santo & Johnny – Blue Moon
15. Dean Martin – Blue Moon
16. Big American Loop #3
Two pitched-down dub 45s that meander through a field of mid-century blues and ballads, paired with big sheets of reverb, vinyl crackle, and five variations on the idea of a blue moon.
Love among the ruins. A dusty Roy Orbison ballad plays from an old radio in an alley but the machines can’t find it.
“A tantalizing 21st Century cross between Let Us Now Praise Famous Men and On the Road, this remarkable and utterly original memoir heralds the arrival of a new and important American voice. The Road to Somewhere will take you places you will not easily forget.”
A man believed his only chance at justice was to take a hostage and march him downtown. An idealistic dancer packed the theater yet the city cast her out. A search for their ghosts continues beneath the city.
You’ve seen her before. She’s the old woman with her eyes closed on the bus, the one who sits alone on a bench for hours. At night she listens to the exhausted air conditioners that sound like the sea, tuning in to the city’s static like an old radio show.
The Former Desk of the First Office of the Bureau of Manufactured History was unveiled at a ceremony on the third of May and continues to appear in unexpected locations throughout Indianapolis.