Sci fi writer sings with guitar legend at Chapters Throughout 27 years as a Hugo-award-winning science fiction writer, Vancouver's Spider Robinson cherished a secret ambition--to release a CD of original music. But in his wildest dreams he never imagined that when he did, his band would include his favorite guitarist, Alberta's legendary Amos Garrett. The results can be heard Friday December 8 from 7-8:30 PM, when Spider will perform music from his new CD, and also sign copies of his latest novel, in the downtown Chapters outlet at Robson and Howe.
"Originally, this writing thing was just a sideline until I could be what I really wanted -- the sensitive folk/blues musician who gets all the girls," Robinson says, offering a glimpse of himself at 22. "Then some fool invented disco, so I needed an alternative romantic image. 'Starving writer' was the one that worked for me."
Some of that randy young man lingers in "Leather Zippo Holster," a song in praise of how slick smoking accessories can help a guy get lucky. But his girl-chasing days are long over--as is clear in the CD's title tune, "Belaboring The Obvious," a whimsical ballad for his wife of 25 years, in which he ponders how to tell Jeanne he loves her, one more time, without being, as the song puts it, "...more redundant than was absolutely necessary."
The two happiest events of my life so far have been my wedding and the birth of our daughter," Spider says. "But number three would be the day Amos Garrett volunteered his services on lead guitar for my CD. I've worshipped Amos since I heard his famous break on Maria Muldaur's 'Midnight at the Oasis,' over 25 years ago."
Thanks to modern technology--a special copy of the new CD with the vocals digitally removed--Spider will be singing live at Chapters on December 8, backed by an invisible band including Garrett. "It's a new performance format I call 'Folkaoke,'" Robinson jokes.
The other songs on the album, "Oblivion" and "The Drunkard's Song," feature characteristically stunning Garrett solos, in addition to the blend of clever language and funny situations that fans of Spider's Callahan's Bar series know well. The CD also offers Spider reading excerpts from his new novel and thirtieth book, CALLAHAN'S KEY [Bantam].
BELABORING THE OBVIOUS goes on sale December 5 via www.spiderrobinson.com; copies are also available at Chapters outlets in Vancouver, and at White Dwarf Books.