Come have a laugh at my expense tonight: I’ll be telling my personal stories from the “Baby Got Back” era tonight at The Soundtrack Series (alongside luminaries like Maura Johnston and Sasha Frere-Jones) at New York City’s Le Poisson Rouge (The Red Fish, for you Freedom Fries folks), 158 Bleecker Street in money makin’ Manhattan.
PICTURED: The “Butt Balloon” makes its street debut in San Francisco, February 1992; and it’s Hollywood debut in the movie “Falling Down” with Michael Douglas.
The new book that I co-authored with Bill Adler and Cey Adams — Def Jam: The First 25 Years Of The Last Great Record Label (Rizzoli) — is out this week. (Click HERE to buy the book.) So much more than a “coffee table” book, it’s a comprehensive oral history of the label. The book is being feted around New York in the coming week.
Tomorrow night, Paul Holdengraber will host a conversation at the New York Public Library with Rick Rubin and Russell Simmons (the first time, I believe that those two have ever appeared together in public for such a discussion). The event, as of now, is sold out.
Then, on Monday, Bill, Cey and I will have a considerably more low-key discussion at NYU — fitting in that Def Jam actually started there.
Hope to see you at one of these events!
I’ve had a number of peak experiences since the release of The Big Payback, some public (like being interviewed on radio and in print) and some more personal (the emails and Tweets and phone calls from friends, family, colleagues and strangers alike).
But there’s a special thrill for me in The Big Payback making New York magazine’s “Approval Matrix” this week:
Of course, my Mom and Dad like that the book cover gets to loiter right by the sign that says “Brilliant.”
But, for me, it’s the positioning of the book between “Highbrow” and “Lowbrow” that validates what I was trying to do as a writer, and in many ways reflects the ethos of hip-hop itself, and of the man who first captured its ultimate potential as recorded art, my former boss Rick Rubin.
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