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Thread: Funny reference to Bluegrass in mystery novel

  1. #1
    Registered User Doug Brock's Avatar
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    Default Funny reference to Bluegrass in mystery novel

    I'm working my way through a crime series by British writer, Mark Billingham. The policeman/hero loves gritty older American country music, especially Johnny Cash. In "The Burning Girl" from 2004, the hero is trying to shut down for the night.

    "Reaching across for his Walkman, he pulled on the headphones and pressed play: The Mountain, Steve Earle's 1999 collaboration with the Del McCoury Band. He rubbed at the tightness in his chest, deciding that it almost certainly was indigestion.

    "It was impossible to stay down for too long, listening to bluegrass."



    This last line is actually a bit ambiguous as far as its spirit. Is he saying that it was impossible for the food to stay down for too long, or for his spirit to stay down for too long. Either way, I was surprised and intrigued to see a reference to Del and to Bluegrass!
    Doug Brock
    2018 Kimble 2 point (#259), 2019 Silverangel Econo A, Eastman MD315, Eastman MDA315
    Pisgah Wonder open back banjo, cheap old German fiddle, Martin HD28, Martin D18GE, CA Guitars Bluegrass Performer

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    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Funny reference to Bluegrass in mystery novel

    The ambiguity is palpable for BG fans like many of us (myself included)! I like to think he was referring to the more positive aspect of the music making him feel a bit better. Wasn’t it Steve Martin that said “It’s almost impossible to play (the banjo) without smiling!” I substitute bluegrass music for the
    “five stringed instrument of torture” to be the tiniest bit more broad minded!
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

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  4. #3
    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Funny reference to Bluegrass in mystery novel

    Banjo player smiles. Audience? Maybe, maybe not...
    Allen Hopkins
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  6. #4
    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Funny reference to Bluegrass in mystery novel

    Aww, geeze!
    Or maybe “Gee, Haw?”
    I can be pretty “Muley” about playing (or listening to) music.
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

  7. #5
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    Default Re: Funny reference to Bluegrass in mystery novel

    If you like mysteries (the ones with interesting characters and regional flavor, not the high-andrenaline, high body-count kind),
    The Appalachian Mountain Mysteries series by Lynda McDaniel has a main character who -- especially by Volume 3 -- plays in a bluegrass band.
    Volume 4, which she is working on now, is has a story woven entirely around old murder ballads.

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  9. #6
    Registered User Doug Brock's Avatar
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    Default Re: Funny reference to Bluegrass in mystery novel

    I'll check her out!
    Doug Brock
    2018 Kimble 2 point (#259), 2019 Silverangel Econo A, Eastman MD315, Eastman MDA315
    Pisgah Wonder open back banjo, cheap old German fiddle, Martin HD28, Martin D18GE, CA Guitars Bluegrass Performer

  10. #7
    Fatally Flawed Bill Kammerzell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Funny reference to Bluegrass in mystery novel

    I've been looking for a new writer.
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