Kendra Steiner Editions

December 31, 2011

Happy New Year 2012 !!!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 8:54 am

Wishing everyone everywhere a satisfying, joyous, peaceful and productive 2012…

from Sir Roger…and also from Bill, Mary Anne, and the Kendra Steiner Editions crew…

….

December 26, 2011

new A. J. KAUFMANN poetry chapbook available, “LOVE LIONS OF PARIS” (KSE #197)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 6:43 pm

A. J.  KAUFMANN

“LOVE LIONS OF PARIS”  (KSE #197)

poetry chapbook, $5.00 ppd. anywhere

LOVE LIONS OF PARIS (KSE #197) is the 13th poetry chapbook that Poznan, Poland-based poet/musician/songwriter A. J. Kaufmann  has done for Kendra Steiner Editions.

That is because Kaufmann perfectly exemplifies the KSE aesthetic: he is rooted in Beat poetry and psychedelia, he knows the important avant-garde traditions of the last 150 years, he reflects the particulars of his culture/region (and also such important areas for him such as Berlin and Paris), and he takes those elements and creates 100% original work from them, work that apes no one else’s work and that has a form and a feel all his own. Yes, his work can be surreal; it can have the post-Rimbaud rock’n’roll decadence of a Leonard Cohen or a Syd Barrett or a Jim Morrison; it can have a psychedelic spiritual exuberance in the tradition of Roky Erickson/Tommy Hall or of Sky Sunlight Saxon. But it’s always 100 % A. J. Kaufmann.  Having worked with the man on three collaborative chapbooks, and a fourth chapbook that was a joint work but one where we both worked from similar prompts,  I can testify to his amazing imagination, his devotion to craft, and his dedicated work ethic, even while living a lifestyle that would kill or sideline a lesser man.

A. J. has been working primarily on his music for the last 18 months, finishing one album and now working on a second, but we are fortunate that he took time out from his recording/songwriting work to produce the poems in LOVE LIONS OF PARIS. A. J. is a European Citizen of the World, and to such a man Paris and Berlin have a magical presence, perhaps the way cities such as New York or New Orleans or San Francisco or Memphis might to an American such as myself, and Kaufmann has spent extended periods in each city, living the poet’s life, with guitar and notebook in hand. Those cities continue to live on in him, even though he is back in his native Poland, and they animate and inhabit LOVE LIONS OF PARIS. Kaufmann himself explains the genesis of this work:

“Love Lions” was written in Paris especially for KSE and it’s got a strong music connection. One summer evening I was sitting and smoking in a cheap hotel room, thinking about glam rock, space-age poets and lost loves, listening to Marc Bolan and Tyrannosaurus Rex, sketching dragons in my notebook… an hour or two later I realized I’ve sketched something more reminiscent of a lion and I wrote down the line “I kiss / Drifting love lions / With a golden smile” which later, upon my return to Poznan, became the first line of the title poem. Most of the other poems were composed while humming imaginary words with a grungy guitar accompaniment, but the melodies have since been lost as we had no recording equipment, not even a laptop, in my room. Some of my friends think I used cut-up techniques to develop these poems or “lyrics”, but truth is I definitely stopped doing cut-ups last year. “Love Lions” is, in my opinion, a glam-rock version of “Siva in Rags”, with dusty beauty gone all shiny and chromed, with once dried blood now boiling to the sound of “All the Young Dudes”.

As always, it’s an exciting and fresh and dazzling poetic trip from one of the few 100% original voices on the scene today.

$5.00 ppd. anywhere…

Previous KSE chapbooks by A. J.  Kaufmann (all out of print…although the three collaborative works with Bill Shute will be collected in book form in 2012/2013):

KSE #102, A. J. Kaufmann, “Siva In Rags.”

KSE #106, A. J. Kaufmann, “East-West Train.” Sound Library Series, Volume 36.

KSE #111, A. J. Kaufmann, “Poznan City Gospel.”

KSE #113, A. J. Kaufmann & Bill Shute, “Beyond the Blue Rocks: Meditations on the Tibetan Book of the Dead.”

KSE #119, A. J. Kaufmann, “Satori in Berlin (X-Berg Songs).” Issued December 2008.

KSE #139, A. J. Kaufmann, “Antiquewhite Rain.” Sound Library Series, Volume 45. Issued early July 2009.

KSE #143, A. J. Kaufmann, “Symbolisme Psychédélique.” Sound Library Series, Volume 47. In memory of Sky Sunlight Saxon

KSE #145,  A. J. Kaufmann & Bill Shute, “Blues for Duffy Power.” Issued 20 September 2009.

KSE #149,  A. J. Kaufmann, “Via Alighieri.” Cinema Poetry Series, Volume 3. Issued 15 November 2009.

KSE #151,  A.J. Kaufmann & Bill Shute, “Twombly’s Siracusa.” Issued 1 December 2009.

KSE #154,  A.J. Kaufmann, “Vagabond Vacancy.” Issued 5 January 2010.

KSE #159, A.J. Kaufmann & Bill Shute, “78 Horizons.” Sound Library Series, Volume 52. Issued 15 January 2010. (note: this is a joint publication, like the Next Exit volumes, but NOT a Kaufmann-Shute “collaboration”. )

KSE #166, A.J. Kaufmann, “Amazon, The Fame of God.” Cinema Poetry Series, Volume 4. Issued late June/early July 2010.

visit Mr. Kaufmann at     http://foolmoonpiano.blogspot.com

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and why not pick up some other KSE poetry chapbooks and experimental music CDR’s while you are at it? All available cheap and postpaid!

CHAPBOOKS/CDR’s  NOW AVAILABLE:

poetry chapbooks ($5 each, ppd.):

KSE #212 ADRIAN MANNING, “These Hands of Mine”

KSE #193, MICHAEL CASEY, “The Wall Board Knife”

KSE #180, Bill Shute, “Autumn.” Sound Library Series, Volume 59.

KSE #174,  Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal, “Digging a Grave.”

KSE #173,  Bill Shute, “Butterfly Mind.” Sound Library Series, Volume 58.

KSE #185, Michael Layne Heath, “Jazzbo Wind.”

KSE #181, John Sweet, “Continuum.”

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3″ mini-cdr’s ($5.00 each, ppd.)

note: we have released the final cdr in the 3″ format (ST 37) and will allow these to sell out and go out of print as we enter 2012; they will not be re-pressed ever, so get the ones you want NOW…

KSE #205 , ST 37, “K B D P” 

KSE #203,  R. LEE DOCKERY, “Live at the Salvage Vanguard Theater”

KSE #196 , SMOKEY EMERY, “Incident at Town Lake”

KSE #202, BOOK OF SHADOWS, “Poppets and Strings”

KSE #204, XANTHOCEPHALUS, “3 W B.”

KSE #198 ( 3-inch CDR), MATAMOROS  (R. Lee Dockery and Derek Rogers), “Five-Toned Rows”

KSE #191 (3-inch CDR), Massimo Magee & Tim Green, “Direct To Tape.”

KSE #200 (3-inch CDR), Alfred 23 Harth/Soojung Kae/Chang U Choi, “Red Canopy.”

KSE #194 (3-inch CDR), Venison Whirled, “Xibalba.”

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full-sized CDR’s ($7.00 each, ppd.)

KSE #207 (CDR), ALFRED HARTH & CARL STONE, “Gift Fig”

KSE #208 (CDR), ANTHONY GUERRA & BILL SHUTE, “subtraction” (limited USA re-press of CD originally issued on Black Petal Records, Australia)

KSE #206  (CDR), ERNESTO DIAZ-INFANTE, “Emilio”

KSE #213 (CDR), Bill Shute, “Junk Sculpture from the New Gilded Age.” (2nd spoken-word poetry album)

KSE #199 (CDR), Brent Fariss, “Four Environments….Collapsing.”

KSE #189 (CDR), Nick Hennies, “Objects.”

KSE #175 (CDR),  Alfred 23 Harth, “Micro-Saxo-Phone, Edition  III.”

KSE #201 (CDR), Andreas Brandal, “Disturbing The Dust.”

payment via paypal to    django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

December 23, 2011

Mani Neumeier (of Guru Guru), Jürgen Engler (of Die Krupps), and ST 37…COTFG at SVT, Austin, TX, 1 January 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 12:22 pm

Am I dreaming? This opening event in the Church of the Friendly Ghost’s 2012 featured event series (you can get a subscription for the year which cuts down the cost by about half) certainly starts the new year off with a bang.

We have Krautrock pioneer MANI NEUMEIER of Guru Guru and also German industrial punk-metal visionary Jürgen Engler (of Die Krupps) and also Texas’ foremost higher-key psychedelic space explorers (and KSE recording artists)  ST 37 all on one bill, all playing in various combinations…this will be a spontaneous evening with everyone bringing his/her A-game to the table and seeing what happens…I can’t wait….$15 in advance…7  pm on Sunday 1 January 2012…at Salvage Vanguard Theater…brought to you by Church of the Friendly Ghost…

Happy Holidays 2011 from Kendra Steiner Editions…

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 11:50 am

2011 has been a productive and satisfying year at KSE…

many thanks to those of you who have supported our projects…

and to those who attended my readings/performances in Massachusetts and New York in May 2011…

at the Hideout (w/ Michael Aaron Casares) in Austin in January 2011…

at the Lyr-I-Cism Festival curated by Derek Rogers in the Spring of 2011…

and who attended the KSE 5th Anniversary Concert…and the KSE Psychedelic Disaster Whirl…

2012 will be the third calendar year of our CDR releases, and those have been going very well…and after 6+ years, we are still issuing first-rate poetry chapbooks…and in both music and poetry, we are working in areas where no one else is working…no one else is doing what KSE is doing and no one else is doing it in the way we are doing it…as long as I am able and have a few dollars in my pocket (this is a low-budget operation, VERY low-budget, but one never knows what one will face in the future), we will continue to do what we are doing and to evolve and to work outside the comfort zone as much as possible…special thanks to those who have stood by KSE: on the poetry side, Doug Draime, AJ Kaufmann, Keith Dersley, Michael Layne Heath, John Sweet, Adrian Manning, Lynn Alexander, and many others; on the music side, Derek Rogers, Alfred 23 Harth, Massimo Magee, Lee Dockery, Andreas Brandal, Lisa Cameron, Nick Hennies, Brent Fariss, Aaron Mace, Rick Reed, Vanessa Rossetto, Mike Griffin, Eric Hardiman, Mike Barrett, Byron Coley, David Keenan, Heather Leigh Murray, and many others…; and in all areas, thanks to Brad Kohler and Anthony Guerra and David Fern and most of all to Mary Anne Bernal…

We hope to make 2012 memorable and distinctively different…

December 20, 2011

ERNESTO DIAZ-INFANTE, “Emilio” (KSE #206, cdr), 32 experimental solo bajo sexto explorations, now available!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 8:35 am

UPDATE: Ernesto will be performing at the Kendra Steiner Editions 6th Anniversary Concert on April 29, 2012 in Austin, TX, at the Salvage Vanguard Theater. He’ll be performing solo on the bajo sexto (in the manner of the EMILIO cd) and also in trio with bassist Lee Dockery and percussionist Lisa Cameron. Don’t miss it. Presented by the Church of the Friendly Ghost and Kendra Steiner Editions!

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ERNESTO  DIAZ-INFANTE

“Emilio”

KSE #206, full-length CDR

32 tracks of solo bajo sexto explorations

$7.oo postpaid anywhere, via paypal to  django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

San Francisco-based composer/improviser/multi-instrumentalist ERNESTO DIAZ-INFANTE has produced a  stunning piece of work with his new KSE album “EMILIO.”  The Bajo Sexto is an important musical instrument in Mexican and Mexican-American culture, a rich 12-stringed instrument one sees/hears all the time here in San Antonio and also in California, associated with norteño music in Mexico and conjunto music in the US.

With EMILIO, Ernesto Diaz-Infante, who knows the instrument inside out, has recorded a series of 32 unaccompanied experimental solo performances on the Bajo Sexto, each totally different from the others, essentially taking his Chicano roots into the stratosphere of a 21st century post-modern Aztlán—-beautifully close-recorded, so it sounds as if you are INSIDE the instrument. Ernesto is especially interested in the percussive possibilities of his instrument, and one hears echoes of gamelan, tibetan bells, Cage’s prepared piano pieces, hailstorms on metal roofing, Native American drumming, and much much more, all created with no studio trickery on the solo Bajo Sexto. If you have ever been excited by the guitar work, particularly the solo guitar work, of Derek Bailey, Fred Frith, Hans Reichel, Jean-Francois Pauvros, Loren Connors, John Fahey, etc., then you’ll surely become equally excited by this incredible collection. Initially this was going to be a mini-cd with about 20 minutes of music and 15 pieces, but when Ernesto sent me an early version of that, I immediately told him that the project was too important for the limited mini-cd format that a lot of people cannot play on their equipment…and that he needed to record even more material. He did, and now you can hear the full 32-track EMILIO, for me one of the most important albums of the year in the experimental solo-performance field.

Mr. Diaz-Infante is also a composer, arts program curator, and head of the forward-thinking Pax label, which offers a number of experimental and free-improv discs worth owning…you can read more about them here:

http://www.paxrecordings.com/ernesto/SelectedDiscography.html

EMILIO is a pioneering set that takes the Bajo Sexto into previously uncharted territory and rates alongside (IMHO) the classic albums of forward-thinking solo guitar improvisation. With Ernesto’s skill as a composer, each piece creates a different and fascinating world. It’s an exciting place to be, and it’s only $7 ppd. anywhere. Payment via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

While you are ordering EMILIO, why not pick up some of our mini-cdr’s, only $5 each and soon to be out of print permanently:

KSE #205, (3-inch cdr), ST 37, “K B D P,” issued October 2011.

KSE #204, (3-inch cdr), XANTHOCEPHALUS, “3 W B,” issued August 2011.

KSE #203, (3-inch cdr), R. LEE DOCKERY, “Live at the Salvage Vanguard Theater,” issued September 2011.

KSE #202, (3-inch cdr), BOOK OF SHADOWS, “Poppets and Strings,” issued August 2011.

KSE #200 (3-inch cdr), ALFRED 23 HARTH/SOOJUNG KAE/CHANG U CHOI, “Red Canopy,” issued May 2011.

KSE #198 (3-inch cdr), MATAMOROS (Derek Rogers & Lee Dockery), “Five-Toned Rows,” issued June-July 2011.

KSE #196 (3-inch CDR), SMOKEY EMERY, “Incident at Town Lake,” issued September 2011.

KSE #191 (3-inch CDR), MASSIMO MAGEE & TIM GREEN, “Direct To Tape”, issued May-June 2011.

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Or our full-sized, full-length cdr’s, including the new ALFRED 23 HARTH / CARL STONE album “Gift Fig,” only $7 each?

KSE #207 (CDR), Alfred 23 Harth / Carl Stone, “Gift Fig.”

KSE #199 (CDR), Brent Fariss, “Four Environments….Collapsing.”

KSE #189 (CDR), Nick Hennies, “Objects.”

KSE #175 (CDR),  Alfred 23 Harth, “Micro-Saxo-Phone, Edition  III.”

KSE #201 (CDR), Andreas Brandal, “Disturbing The Dust.”

KSE #206 (CDR), Bill Shute, “Junk Sculpture from the New Gilded Age.” (2nd spoken-word poetry album)

December 18, 2011

Brad Kohler & Bill Shute, “EXACTA BOX” (KSE #195, limited reissue of KSE #36) now available!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 1:47 pm

BRAD  KOHLER  &  BILL  SHUTE

“EXACTA BOX”

(KSE #195, poetry chapbook….limited reissue of KSE #36)

$5 ppd. anywhere

payment via paypal to  django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

My relationship with Pittsburgh-based poet, music writer, and fiction writer BRAD KOHLER goes back about 20 years. I’d read his caustic literary pieces about life in the Rust Belt and his insightful articles on the Cleveland musical underground and the Throbbing Gristle/Psychic TV-axis, and we became friends when we both were writing for Chris Stigliano’s legendary BLACK TO COMM/PHFUDD back in the 90’s. As we are both avid horse-players, we’d often discuss the racing world, so I suppose our working on a joint literary project that was horse racing-oriented was inevitable. So here it is. Written and published in 2006, EXACTA BOX was one of the most popular and best-received (with comparisons to Wantling and Bukowski, although re-reading it now I see a big sentimental streak one would not see in either of those writers…I guess any regular horse-player is sentimental about the track) poetry chapbooks of the first year of Kendra Steiner Editions, 2006. I did some public readings of it in the 2006-2007 period, when I was making appearances to promote my then-current books TWELVE GATES TO THE CITY and POINT LOMA PURPLE, and it always went over well with audiences.

It’s also quite different from my usual output. When I do poetic collaborations, I always try to meet the other writer at least halfway, if not 51% of the way, so when I’m paired with, say, A.J. Kaufmann or Zachary C. Bush or Stuart Crutchfield or someone else, I try to speak their language to some extent, and they do the same toward me, so the result is a unique hybrid, neither fish nor fowl, not really like EITHER of our usual works. This is a narrative poem, and as I was re-reading it for this re-publication, I was reminded of authors such as Saroyan or Steinbeck (not that we are on the level of those greats…) if they’d been post-Kerouac, post-Lester Bangs poets. If you are looking for something different from my usual output, THIS IS IT…and anything by Brad Kohler is always worth reading. Brad’s done some superb writing about the horse world…his obscure xerox-chapbook SUCKERBET DOWN IN CLASS was what led me to suggest we do EXACTA BOX. Hope you enjoy it…it’s cheaper than a night at the track, and you don’t have to smell the cigar smoke!

BRAD KOHLER, Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh, PA  2007

$5. ppd anywhere (see ordering details above)

and while you are in a poetry-buying mood, why not try some our other recent chapbooks, also $5 each:

KSE #212, ADRIAN MANNING, “These Hands of Mine”

KSE #197, A.J. KAUFMANN,  “Love Lions of Paris” 

KSE #193, MICHAEL CASEY, “The Wall Board Knife”   

KSE #185, Michael Layne Heath, “Jazzbo Wind.”

KSE #181, John Sweet, “Continuum.”

KSE #174,  Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal, “Digging a Grave.”

or my recently-issued second spoken-word poetry cdr,

KSE #213, JUNK SCULPTURE FROM THE NEW GILDED AGE (which is $7 ppd.)

December 13, 2011

new KSE mini-cd from Texas psychedelic shamans ST 37, “K B D P” (KSE #205), now available

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 9:25 am

ST 37

“K B D P”

3-inch CDR (KSE #205), nearly 20 minutes of music for only $5.00 ppd. anywhere

payment via paypal to  django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

limited, hand-numbered edition of 113 copies

the final release in KSE 3″ mini-cd series…

It’s truly an honor for KSE to issue something from Texas’ foremost psychedelic explorers ST 37 ! The band recently celebrated its 24th anniversary, and unlike the many and varied “psychedelic” revivalists who base their act on old records, ST 37 heads straight into the sun and pushes the limits…psychedelia has never been about working within prescribed forms…it has always been about taking a musical trip as far as it can go and not knowing when or if you’ll ever come back, just like the greatest trips and/or spiritual experiences. ST 37 now deliver a kaleidoscopic 20-minute bubbling, gurgling, melting rocket to the far side of the sun on K B D P, a piece that starts in a mellow, cryptic way and gradually builds to an extended climax and KEEPS GOING, eventually entering a new solar system and fading out with some disembodied, haunting words and then we’re gone…until we hit the “repeat” button…

The core band of Scott Telles, Bobby Baker, Joel Crutcher, and Lisa Cameron are joined by guest Natalie Hill on this session recorded in September 2011 especially for KSE…and the next month ST 37 did a live performance of this piece as headlining band at the Kendra Steiner Editions “Psychedelic Disaster Whirl” concert, going on last because no one could possibly follow them. Just as they are the final artist in our series of 3″ mini-cdr’s. No one could possibly follow them.

Raving about this release on the Volcanic Tongue website, David Keenan wrote, “Great new set from this long-running psych rock group out of Austin Texas that feature Lisa Cameron of Venison Whirled/3 Day Stubble, et al. The group combine primitive, almost Mo Tucker-style drum tattoos with garage band fuzz and a ton of modal weight, all cut with the kind of primitive delivery more associated with ’72 private press sides than contemporary jam bands. There’s a nod to Hawkwind and yer favourite biker side in the way that the twin guitars dissolve into woozy UFO tones and the group have a way of collapsing song structures that feels as righteously wasted as anything by Nicodemus.”

In recent months the KSE 3″ cdr series has featured a number of important Texas-based experimental musicians: Lee Dockery, Daniel Hipolito (aka Smokey Emery), Book of Shadows (w/ original ST 37 member Carlton Crutcher and vocals from the transcendent Sharon Crutcher), Lisa Cameron (in her Venison Whirled incarnation), Derek Rogers, etc. It was a great run, and these discs will be talked about and jammed for years/decades to come, but many listeners cannot play 3″ cdr’s, so we’ve decided to work exclusively in the full-sized cdr world for our music releases. Thanks for your support of the 3″-ers…it was great to have a shirt-pocket full of them at shows in Austin and trade them with musicians in the audience for various cassettes/cdr’s/etc. That’s truly what this low-budget but big-hearted Texas experimental music scene is about…sharing, turning each other on, community. That spirit will of course continue…I’ll just have to wear carpenter pants with pockets big enough for full-sized cdr’s! Grab the remaining 3″-ers while you can. I’ll definitely NOT be re-pressing these (the error rate with the cd burns is also higher with 3″ discs, so I wind up throwing bad discs away w/ each batch). Right now, the following mini-discs are available for $5 each ppd. (payment via the paypal info listed above), although some are down to 6 or 8 remaining copies…act now:

 

KSE #205, (3-inch cdr), ST 37, “K B D P,” issued October 2011.

KSE #204, (3-inch cdr), XANTHOCEPHALUS, “3 W B,” issued August 2011.

KSE #203, (3-inch cdr), R. LEE DOCKERY, “Live at the Salvage Vanguard Theater,” issued September 2011.

KSE #202, (3-inch cdr), BOOK OF SHADOWS, “Poppets and Strings,” issued August 2011.

KSE #200 (3-inch cdr), ALFRED 23 HARTH/SOOJUNG KAE/CHANG U CHOI, “Red Canopy,” issued May 2011.

KSE #198 (3-inch cdr), MATAMOROS (Derek Rogers & Lee Dockery), “Five-Toned Rows,” issued June-July 2011.

KSE #196 (3-inch CDR), SMOKEY EMERY, “Incident at Town Lake,” issued September 2011.

KSE #191 (3-inch CDR), MASSIMO MAGEE & TIM GREEN, “Direct To Tape”, issued May-June 2011.

and VERY limited numbers left on the following, order these NOW or go without!

KSE #194 (3-inch cdr), VENISON WHIRLED (Lisa Cameron), “XIBALBA”, issued April 2011.

KSE #186, (3-inch CDR), PARASHI, “Zone of Alienation.”  Issued March 2011.

KSE #185, (3-inch CDR), BELLTONESUICIDE, “non-conformist.” Issued March 2011.

December 12, 2011

TICKETS FOR DEATH by Brett Halliday, source novel for the PRC film “Too Many Winners”

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 9:50 am

About six years after the release of the Michael Shayne detective novel TICKETS FOR DEATH, the book was adapted in 1947 into a film at PRC, the final film in the series that starred HUGH BEAUMONT as Shayne, and re-titled TOO MANY WINNERS. The story deals with counterfeit paramutuel tickets at a racetrack: in the movie it’s a horse track, with a name that echoes Santa Anita, although this being a PRC film, you see very little of the track. And of course the track is in California, so L.A. location shooting works just fine. The novel is set at a greyhound track, and as usual for Shayne is set in Miami. Since the book was a success, one wonders why PRC changed the title. However, after seeing the film and reading the novel, I’d guess that PRC feared those who’d actually read the novel would be distressed at the many changes made. Elements from the novel seem to be inserted into a narrative whose focus is on Shayne getting away for a duck hunting (!) vacation with his girlfriend/secretary (he’s married in the novel, although later in the 1940’s novels Shayne is widowed). It’s hard to cram all the details of a complex detective mystery with many characters into a 60-minute PRC programmer, but the film-makers try, although (as is often the case in PRC and Monogram crime-mystery films) too much is explained after the fact in the film’s final minutes, while in the novel the details are well-seeded into the text throughout, but such is the nature of a B-movie with a quick production schedule on an assembly-line format. The emphasis is necessarily on atmosphere, colorful supporting players, and a charismatic lead, which we certainly have in Hugh Beaumont, who plays the character in a jovial way that’s great fun but has no basis in the novels. It’s interesting to note that the two actors who played Shayne in 1940’s films, Lloyd Nolan and Hugh Beaumont, created unique characterizations and the role fit them like a glove. In Nolan’s case, the emphais was on verbal wit and the charm of star Nolan. However, neither is anything like Brett Halliday’s Shayne, a cognac-drinking, red-haired tough guy who in some ways was the model for Mike Hammer. I’m assuming that 20th Century Fox and then PRC were buying the Shayne brand when they paid for the rights to the books/character–he was a pre-sold commodity and would get people who’d never even read one of the novels into the theater. In fact, with the lack of resemblance of the movies to the novels, the studios were probably hoping the audience had not read the novels, just heard the name, seen the books, and liked the “idea” of Mike Shayne.

20th Century Fox issued a box-set of Lloyd Nolan Shayne films and the PRC Beaumont ones can be had via “collector’s circles” (meaning, check ebay and I-offer, etc.). Halliday’s many Shayne novels (and in the mid-60s on, many were ghosted though appearing under the Halliday name) have been through many editions and can still be found cheap, especially if you don’t mind a 70’s reprint of a 40’s novel, and the 70’s originals can be found even cheaper, though they tend to have a generic flavor (I pick them up in used bookstores while on the road and usually pay around $2-3 for a VG copy that isn’t going to have me sneezing from mold). You could easily pick up two dozen Shayne novels for under $50, if you were so inclined. They are models of economical writing, and the 40’s and 50’s entries are atmosphere-filled. As a poet, I value both terse (and particular) expression and controlled ambiguity (the latter being essential in creating/sustaining/developing  the mystery elements of a detective novel), and I always find myself returning to Shayne novels when I need to flush out the pretentious BS from my system.

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