Monday, July 25, 2022
– Dave Alvin is best known as a musician, but his written words will be the focus when "New Highway: Selected Lyrics, Poems, Prose, Essays, Eulogies and Blues" is out Sept. 20 via BMG.
The book includes a selection of Alvin's poetry; excerpts of his prose; newspaper articles and essays on artists including Frank Zappa, Bo Diddley and Ray Charles (a piece which earned Alvin a Grammy nomination); tributes to friends and influences such as Nanci Griffith and Merle Haggard; a long-lost interview with Buck Owens; several of his album notes and a representation of his lyrics.
"Working with Dave Alvin is a thrill," said Scott B. Bomar, the Senior Director of BMG Books. "His song 'The Man in the Bed' is one of the most well-written songs I've ever heard, and that's just one of many of his compositions that make my jaw drop. It's no surprise that his gifts as a lyricist also extend to poetry, essays, and album notes. We began working on this project long before the pandemic, so to see it come to fruition is so gratifying. The man is a national treasure."
Alvin said, "Since my checkered college days studying poetry at Long Beach State University in the '70s, I've always tried to combine my love of music with my love of writing. That's why I eventually became a songwriter, I guess. It's a real honor and kick that BMG Books asked me to put together a book of my lyrics, my poems and essays. I kind of feel like I finally graduated from college."
"Dave Alvin's writing goes far beyond the songs that we've come to know and love," said Louie Perez of Los Lobos. "His prose and poetry share that same beauty and painful grittiness that is his beloved California. Dave's work celebrates the human spirit, as rich and full of soul as the man himself."
Alvin previously released "Nana, Big Joe & the Fourth of July" and "Any Rough Times Are Now Behind You: Selected Poems & Writings: 1979-1995."