Those of you who are my FB friends know that I am in Chicago, wrapping up the final edit of Boys Don't Lie: A History of Shoes. It was supposed to be done a year ago, but what's a year among friends?
Seriously,the rewrite has been totally worth the time.The text is more textured and thoughtful, supported by more data and even more interviews (you wouldn't believe the people I dug up!) and,on a strictly journalistic level, really, really solid. Much of that credit goes to my friend Moira McCormick, who's been writing about Shoes and music for lo, these thirty-odd years, in the Illinois Entertainer and Goldmine and Trouser Press, in Rolling Stone and Billboard. She's been so much more than an editor, and her credit on the book will reflect that. Once you've sat side-by-side with someone, Woodstein-style, there's a whole 'nother dynamic at work.
We've been doing intensive editing for several days, but last night took a night off to hear the other big Shoes news of 2012: their new record, as yet unnamed. We heard the whole thing in rough demo mixes, and though some songs are more complete than others, the whole thing is a gorgeous tapestry, more Stolen Wishes than Propeller. I won't get into specifics here, but if you're a Shoes fan, you're going to be very, very happy quite soon. I know I'm still flying, hours later. (What is it about those harmonies?)
In preparation for launching their new record, Shoes have developed a new website and gotten a Youtube channel (blackvinylshoes), and have an official FB group where news is posted regularly. (if that doesn't work, because it's the link I follow, just go to Facebook and search "Shoes: Official Fan Page")
The book should be out in relatively short order (I kill me!), and the record not long afterward.
2012 looks to be a great year for this long-dormant-but-still-got-it crew: don't miss it!