Arts & Culture

Will Nick Hornby Write a Musical About PunkTorah?

Tonight in Atlanta, a pairing we didn’t really expect to see: British author Nick Hornby will read, and Can!!Can, fronted by Jewcy contributor Patrick Aleph, will rock. Hornby is on the road after a brief stint supporting the record that … Read More

By / October 18, 2010

Tonight in Atlanta, a pairing we didn’t really expect to see: British author Nick Hornby will read, and Can!!Can, fronted by Jewcy contributor Patrick Aleph, will rock.

Hornby is on the road after a brief stint supporting the record that the scribe and the songsmith worked on together, Lonely Avenue.  But tonight he will read from his book, Juliet Naked, and will play songs from his iPod. Can!!Can will supply their southern fried punk, and either scare the crap out of Hornby, or make a fan out of him.

Either way, I had to ask Patrick his thoughts on Hornby, Ben Folds, and the whole situation going on in the ATL.

Jewcy: Nick Hornby just wrote lyrics for a Ben Folds album.  I feel like I should know more about Ben Folds and Nick Hornby.  It’s sad, but all I know from Ben Folds in the song “Brick,” and from Hornby, I saw the film for High Fidelity, and I read his column in The Believer.   What about you?

Patrick: I used to rock out to Ben Folds when I was a teenager. There was a pub across the street that I used to hide out in and the 20-somethings that worked there always played, “Song For the Dumped.” After a while I realized I liked him more than just background music, and even though I’m Mr. Garage-Punk-Torah guy, my secret dream is to be able to sing and play like that guy.
Honestly, I know nothing about Hornby, outside of the fact that he must have really hated life after High Fidelity the movie came out. I bet he couldn’t show up to any US event without some douche bag screaming “Cosby Sweatah!” in the worst Jack Black voice possible. I did like About A Boy, because I love the idea of living off the royalties of one song. Kinda working on that goal myself.
Alright, we are in agreement that Honby has done a good job at writing books that turn into movies we like?. So as you say, you’re”Mr. Garage-Punk-Torah guy,” but your “secret dream is to be able to sing and play like that guy.”  That’s cool  When I was a kid, I wanted to be Billy Joel.  Except sans the drunk driving and being married to models (because I thought girls had cooties).  Do you think there is something in Jewish DNA that makes us want to be “piano men”?

Mmmm, I dunno. We have our foot in the door of every musical genre there is, other than Nazi H8core. And even then I wouldn’t be surprised if someone put out a parody album called “Blood Matzah” or something equally insane. Whatever happened to your goal of being Billy Joel? There’s still a chance…you’re a young guy.
I got this gig at Jewcy. So Nick Hornby and Ben Folds are both middle aged dudes who are probably obsessive about music, women and pop culture — that’s what I’ve gathered.  Do you think you can convince them to collaborate on a Can!!Can musical?  I think I’d go check that out.
Probably couldn’t convince them to do a Can!!Can musical, though I will get to see nick at the show were doing with him on Monday at the highland inn ballroom. And Jason, don’t worry about learning to play piano. Being a good musician is overrated. I take what Iggy Pop said as my motto, “when I first heard the Velvet Underground it gave me hope. Here is a guy who can’t sing, and I can’t sing, so I should sing!”