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Friday December 19, 2014
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Cold Pizza for Breakfast

 

continued

after her 2009 album, Cold Pizza for Breakfast.

Those who enjoy Lavin's songs--by turns perceptive, witty, and bittersweet--may appreciate this look into the artist's life, onstage and off. Some of her stories illuminate songs, some could have been songs, and some give readers a look at life on the road or inside the music business. She includes some solid advice: Avoid assonant end-rhymes. Start your own songwriting workshop. Read a contract before signing it. We get a look at the life and death of Dave Van Ronk, one of her mentors. We see her knit a shawl for Elizabeth Edwards, learn how to throw a spiral from Joe Namath, and appear in a play with Julia Roberts. We follow her obsession with the Broadway stage, especially with Dame Edna and with The Drowsy Chaperone, a musical she saw sixty-seven times. (Ann Arborites can see it at the Performance Network next season.)

Lavin has a sense of humor about herself and lets us know when she messes up. We hear about what happened when she opened for Joan Rivers--it wasn't pretty--how she confused a car service with an escort service, how she cheated a six-year-old out of a Cracker Jack prize, and why she got stuck in the bathroom of a whorehouse run by a man out on bail for murder.

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