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Bar Yarns and Manic-Depressive Mixtapes

Jim Walsh on Music from Minneapolis to the Outer Limits

2016
Author:

Jim Walsh

Bar Yarns and Manic-Depressive Mixtapes

Thirty years of pop, funk, rock and roll, up close and personal, from veteran Twin Cities journalist Jim Walsh

Writer and musician Jim Walsh distills thirty delirious, jam-packed years of some of the best music writing ever to come out of the Twin Cities. Capturing the pure notes and character of the sound of the Twin Cities and beyond, with a keen eye for trends and the telling detail, his book truly is a mix tape of unforgettable music.

Jim Walsh has been the introspective and thoughtful voice of a generation that reenergized Minnesota music and gave it to the world. This is a book about a man in love with music.

Chris Osgood of The Suicide Commandos

Bar Yarns and Manic Depressive Mix Tapes distills thirty delirious, jam-packed years of some of the best music writing ever to come out of the Twin Cities. As a writer and musician, the ever-curious Jim Walsh has lived a life immersed in music, and it all makes its way into his columns and feature articles, interviews and reviews, including personal essays on life, love, music, family, death, and, yes, the manic-depressive highs and lows that come with being an obsessive music lover and listener.

From Minneapolis’s own Prince to such far-flung acts as David Bowie, the Waterboys, Lucinda Williams, Parliament-Funkadelic, L7, the Rolling Stones, the Ramones, U2, Hank Williams, Britney Spears, Elvis Presley and Nirvana, Walsh’s work treats us to a chorus of the voices and sounds that have made the music scene over the past three decades. The big names are here, from Rosanne Cash to Bruce Springsteen to Bob Marley and Jackson Browne, but so are those a little shy of superstardom, like the Tin Star Sisters and Uncle Tupelo, Son Volt, the Gear Daddies, Semisonic, and The Belfast Cowboys.

The book is also a tour (de force) of the Twin Cities' most celebrated music venues past and present, from the Prom Ballroom to Paisley Park to Duffy's. When Walsh isn't celebrating the sheer magic of live music or dreaming to tunes blasting from the car console, he might be surveying the scene with the Hamm's Bear at Grumpy's or the Double Deuce or singing the last night at the Uptown Bar blues. Whether he's dishing dirt with Yoko Ono or digging the Replacements' roots, giving an old rocker a spin or offering a mic to the latest upstart, Jim Walsh reminds us that in the land of a thousand lakes there are a thousand dances, and the music never dies.

Capturing the pure notes and character of the sound of the Twin Cities and beyond, with a keen eye for trends and the telling detail, his book truly is a mix tape of thirty years of unforgettable music.

Bar Yarns and Manic-Depressive Mixtapes

Jim Walsh is a Minneapolis-based writer, journalist, columnist, and songwriter and the author of The Replacements: All Over But The Shouting: An Oral History and, with Dennis Pernu, The Replacements: Waxed Up Hair and Painted Shoes: The Photographic History. The former music editor at City Pages and pop music columnist at the St. Paul Pioneer Press and current staff columnist at the Southwest Journal and a regular contributor to Minnpost.com and others, Walsh has published in Rolling Stone, SPIN, the Village Voice, the L.A. Weekly, the Star Tribune, Melody Maker, Billboard, the Utne Reader, and has been a recipient of the John S. Knight Journalism Fellowship at Stanford University. He is the former leader of bands REMs, Laughing Stock, and The Mad Ripple, and the ringleader behind the 10-year-old singer/songwriter showcase The Mad Ripple Hootenanny.

Bar Yarns and Manic-Depressive Mixtapes

Jim Walsh has been the introspective and thoughtful voice of a generation that reenergized Minnesota music and gave it to the world. This is a book about a man in love with music.

Chris Osgood of The Suicide Commandos

Most mere mortals would have burned out after so many years and so many decibels and late nights, but Jim Walsh is the battery rabbit of the local music scene. For him it really is all about the passion: his contagious joy, awe, and fierce fidelity to the communal spirit are there in everything he writes, and his voice is unmistakable.

Brad Zellar, author of Suburban World: The Norling Photos, Conductors of the Moving World, and House of Coates

Jim Walsh's Bar Yarns and Manic-Depressive Mixtapes is as much a chronicle of the past few decades of the Minneapolis scene as it is a pitch-perfect memoir of what it means to live for music. A crucial read for anyone who has spent their days and nights tangled in the tether of a song.

Jessica Hopper, author of The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic

Jim Walsh’s Bar Yarns and Manic-Depressive Mixtapes is like a cicada come trilling out of the fertile past. Each chapter is a love song of old for the here and now, a desperate season in need of music elixir.

Nicole Helget, author of Summer of Ordinary Ways, The Turtle Catcher, and Stillwater

Walsh’s writing is musical, rhythmic and tuned, with a throughline of humanity.

MinnPost.com

Jim Walsh is a true believer: For him, rock ’n’ roll is more than music or culture and becomes religion. Published in Rolling Stone and The Village Voice, the Minnesota writer-musician is a good and heartfelt essayist and memoirist.

Shepherd Express

Bar Yarns and Manic-Depressive Mixtapes

Contents
Introduction: Going Underground
Summerteeth
Fly Me to the Moon
Chickery Chick
We Could Be Heroes Just for One Day
Nye’s: The Long Goodbye
1. Spirit in the Night
We’re Gonna Be Friends
Baptism by Bruce
Taken by a Photograph
For a Dancer
2. On the Road to Find Out
No Direction Home
Side of the Road
All Down the Line
Legalize It
Merry Christmas to the Thief Who Stole My CD Player
3. Mix #1: Crush on You
Singing in My Sleep
Short Man’s Room
After the Dance
All about Chemistry
I Saw the Light
Times like This
Partners in Crime
4. Bar Yarns
From the Land of Sky Blue Waters
Uptown Bar Blues
Closing Time
Ballad of the Tin Star Sisters
Driftwood Nights
5. Showmen’s Rest
Are You Lonesome Tonight?
All Apologies
Do You Remember Rock ’n’ Roll Radio?
Meeting across the River
6. Mix #2: Teenage Kicks
One Love
Ooh La La
This Is the Sea
All My Life
Beautiful Day
7. The Beautiful Ones
The Gold Experience
Salesmen and Racists
Put a Little Love in It
Magic
8. Mix #3: Heart and Soul
I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For
Peace on Earth
The Ballad of Paul and Sheila
Signed, Sealed, Delivered
Love Is the Law
Toxic
I Am the Cosmos
Georgia on My Mind
It’s the End of the World As We Know It (and I Feel Fine)
9. Minneapolis Confidential
Geese of Beverly Road
Greetings from Lake We Be Gone
Phantom of First Avenue
Winter of Our Swedish Fiddler
All These Weeks
10. Mix #4: Funky Ceili
Free Your Mind . . .
Grindstone
Windfall
Ballad of El Goodo
Second to No One
11. Prince in the ’90s
Emancipation
Give Up the Funk
Everyday People
I Wish U Heaven
12. Mix #5: Float On
Bittersweet Symphony
Danny Boy
How to Fight Loneliness
She’s So Heavy
Looking for the Northern Lights
Harriet
If You Want to Sing Out, Sing Out
Acknowledgments
Index