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PREVIEW: The OA’s Eleventh Annual Southern Music Issue


Coming DECEMBER FIRST, 2009: Our Eleventh Annual Southern Music Issue, with two CDs. What does this mean? It means the PERFECT, stress-free holiday gift is just around the corner. Okay, “perfect” is too much. We’ll go instead with Peter Gurlanick’s concept of “IMPERFECT PERFECTION.”  (That’s how Peter described the workings of one Jerry Lee Lewis in last year’s Music Issue. And if you missed last year’s Music Issue, you also missed Jerry Lee’s uncanny cover of “HOLD ON, I’M COMING” on the OA CD.) Please don’t think we are bragging on ourselves when we say the upcoming SOUTHERN MUSIC ISSUE will be full of imperfect perfection. We are not. We are referring instead to the great host of sublime artists who will be peppering our TWO. NEW. CDs.

They are the ones providing the perfect imperfection, as are the award-winning writers in the issue.

Question: Why TWO CDs and not just ONE?

•  Well, last year, in honor of our tenth year of doing Music Issues, we put out TWO CDs—instead of just one. And the TWO CDs were so well received (and, frankly, so fun to put together) that we wanted to do it again. So we have!

• Plus: Starting off a gift subscription to THE OXFORD AMERICAN with a Southern Music Issue that features TWO CDs makes for a blast-off of a holiday present. Somebody is going to be very, very happy.

• Also: This year we introduce our new SOUTHERN STATE SERIES OF CDs, kicking off with, naturally, the Natural State (aka Arkansas). This means that one of the two CDs you receive will focus on music from Arkansas. Says Editor Marc Smirnoff: “We are going to mess with people’s preconceptions about what Arkansas music means. It means the same thing that Southern music means: everything: the old, the new, the fresh, the forgotten, etc.”

• Here is another message from Editor Marc Smirnoff: “Last year’s Music Issue was pretty good. Writers like Kevin Brockmeier, Peter Gurlanick, Roy Blount, Grant Alden, and Jack Pendarvis really shook things up. As did, of course, the artists on the two CDs: Jerry Lee, Ella (doing a Cream cover!), Neko, Lucinda, Elvis, Eartha—we’re on a first-name basis here—Love, Big Star, and on and on. But you know what? This year, both the magazine and the CDs are going to shake it up even more. We have to. It’s our Music Issue. And it’s our Golden Rule: Shake Things Up Even More.”

• So remember the date: December 1, 2009. That’s when THE OXFORD AMERICAN’s 11th Annual SOUTHERN MUSIC ISSUE WITH TWO, YUP TWO, CDs hits the stands, the airwaves, and sings sweetly to your ears and eyes.

• To ensure you get a copy, you may pre-order by CLICKING HERE.

• We are also running a SPECIAL GIFT-SUBSCRIPTION OFFER. JUST IN TIME FOR THE HOLIDAYS! For the special gift-subscription offer (really, what a great, great idea for a present for that cool cat in your family), CLICK HERE.

ABOVE PHOTOGRAPH: "Record Player" by Haley Jane Samuelson, from her series Another Room (2009), courtesy of Hous Projects, NYC.

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