Hey there everyone! I first want to apologize for having this post up a day late. We had some storms in our area this past week and I am just now getting my internet back on. I secondly want to give a very warm welcome to Barry Wightman, author of Pepperland. He has put together and incredibly awesome post for you all that includes a little bit about his book and all of the AMAZING music in it. And as you all know, books and music are my two favorite things so it is no wonder why I absolutely love the discography for Pepperland. I have a little bit about the book below followed by the post by Barry. Please take look, enjoy, and of course don’t forget to tell us what you think in the comments section!
Author: Barry Wightman
Publisher: Running Meter Press
What happens when one revolution dies and a new one begins?
Think the Ramones meet Jane Fonda meets Bill Gates—a love story—where one woman has all the power.
She asks him—do you want to play your little rock ‘n’ roll songs or change the world? He says—both.
Pepperland is a ‘70s rock and roll race through the heartland of America—a love letter to the power of new-fangled computers and the importance of a guitar pick. Pepperland is about missing information, missing people, missing guitars, paranoia, Q & A, brothers, revolution, Agents of the Federal Government, IBM, Hugh Hefner, a Dark Stranger, love, death and the search for it amidst the wreckage of recession-wracked, entropically rundown mid-seventies America.
Hi there, Kate (and of course you guys reading this!). Pepperland, set in the early 70s, is indeed a very musical novel, though it’s really about two very smart young people discovering what to do with their lives, getting into serious trouble, dealing with their pasts and falling in love. As you can see in the Discography shown below, the book’s major chapters, or “Sides” (like an old record, vinyl, get it?) are titled thematically using classic tunes. Also, the book is strewn with hidden references and allusions to lyrics, titles, and cultural touchstones. Sharp-‐eyed readers will have fun spotting them—it’s a bit of a stump-‐the-‐band challenge.
The Discography also includes the music of the fictitious Chicago record label Checkers Records and the London-‐based Terpsichorean Records and the various bands that record for those labels. Please note—I made all that stuff up.
Best, Barry Wightman
The Beach Boys. Pet Sounds. “Wouldn’t It Be Nice.” Capitol Records. 1966. (Pepper’s Theme)
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. “Ohio.” Originally released as a single in May 1970, the studio version was not released on an album until So Far, 1974.
Iron Butterfly. In-‐a-‐Gadda-‐da-‐Vida. Atco. 1968.
Tony Orlando and Dawn. “Candida.” Bell Records. 1970.
Oscar Peterson. The Sound of the Trio. “On Green Dolphin Street.” Recorded at the London House, Chicago. Verve. 1961.
Jefferson Airplane. Volunteers. “We Can Be Together.” RCA. 1969. (Sooz’s Theme)
Jefferson Airplane. Crown of Creation. “Lather.” RCA. 1968.
Bob Dylan. Highway 61 Revisited. Columbia. 1965.
The Rolling Stones. Their Satanic Majesties Request. “She’s a Rainbow.” London. 1967.
The Kinks. Everybody’s in Showbiz. RCA. 1972.
Yes. Fragile. Atlantic. 1971.
Yes. Close to the Edge. Atlantic. 1972.
I am he as you are me. The Beach Boys, Carl and the Passions/So Tough, “All This is That.” Capitol. 1972.
Jefferson Airplane. Volunteers. “We Can Be Together.” RCA. 1969.
Mott the Hoople, All the Young Dudes, RCA. 1972.
The Beatles. Yellow Submarine – Nothing is Real (original soundtrack).
“Pepperland.” Original film score composed & orchestrated by George Martin. 1969.
Checkers Records Artists (partial)
Scratchy Fenwick and His Itchy Zoot Suiters. The Many Moods of Scratchy Fenwick. Including “Do You Like Tractors” and “North Dakota Love Call.” Written/produced by Harrison Creach. 1953.
The Cat Daddies. “Who’s Yowling at My Window?” and “If I Was a Three-legged Cat (Would You Still Love Me?),” 1962 (written/produced by Harrison Creach)
Shine & The Funkolas. “Funk-‐o-‐Sicle,” “Chocolate Bloop,” “Jive Kangaroo,” 1974 (written/produced by Harrison Creach and Bobby Washington)
Pepperland. Pepperland. “Burgers in Benton,” “Freakout in Coal City,” “Your Aunt is Cool,” “Windblown American Dirt,” “151,” “The V,” “If I Were a Rich Man,” “The Transmission of Information, (Part 1)” “Peggy Lee’s Purse,” “Shelley’s Lyre,” “Lysergic Night,” She Kissed the Cat,” “Charlene,” “This Whole Life,” “Queen Fab,” “The Subconscious Sleep of Unconsciousness (Part 1),” “Dreaming’s Done.” May 1974.
Terpsichorean Records Artists
The Thamesmen (“Don’t Cross the River (Without My Heart in Your Pocket)”), The What, Nigel and the Pub Crawlers.
About The Author:
A rock ‘n’ roller at heart, Barry Wightman blends music, mayhem and high technology in his debut novel Pepperland due out this spring from Running Meter Press.
Born in St. Louis, raised in Chicago and New England, Wightman, a business major at Principia College in southern Illinois, claims he should’ve been an English major. Living for many years in Chicago and Minneapolis, he raised a family with his wife Jill, and spent thirty years in the high tech industry, traveling the world, spending time in Silicon Valley, with countless trips to Asia, Australia, and much of the rest of the world. After all that, he earned an MFA from the Vermont College of Fine Arts in 2010. He currently serves as vice president of marketing at Forward Health Group, Inc.
Wightman is Fiction Editor for Hunger Mountain, a literary journal based in Montpelier, Vermont. He is a talented voiceover professional and a Wisconsin Broadcasters Association award-winning essayist, whose work has been heard on WUWM Milwaukee Public Radio.
Wightman is a reviewer and editor for the Washington Independent Review of Books. His music and book reviews have also appeared in various publications in Chicago, Milwaukee and Washington D.C. He is a voting member of the National Book Critics Circle.
This writer and lover of literature has lived in Elm Grove, Wisconsin since 2005. He is married with three grown children and plays guitar and keyboards in a rock ‘n’ roll band, The Outta State Plates.
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