September 19, 2019

Cowboy Junkies keep it fresh

In the early 1990s, Cowboy Junkies lead singer Margo Timmins performed just for me.

Self-publishing tips

I’m on a panel at Book Passage today on self-publishing. The two main ways to go about this are: produce a print book or publishing an e-book. Both have their advantages. For an art or photography book, there’s no substitute for print. But e-books have the potential to reach all corners of the globe without […]

Hugh Laurie’s in the house: concert preview for The Press Democrat

“Blues can bring out in me every single human emotion,” Laurie said, “or at least every emotion that I know of. ‘Let Them Talk’ is an odyssey — my destination is the holy city of New Orleans.”

Heavenly voices: How Ladysmith Black Mambazo went from dream to fame

I recently interviewed a founding member of the South African vocal group Ladysmith Black Mambazo who told me the band started as a dream – see excerpt below. The band plays March 2 at Napa’s Uptown Theater – here’s the excerpt: Mambazo’s music, a hybrid of Zulu harmonies and gospel stylings, came to the group’s […]

Leo Kottke: How the guitar saved my life

“I made up an E chord and I strummed it and I sat up like Dracula coming out of his box. I was alive! I’d been on my back for two months and I was out of bed in a week.”

Video: Yellowstone with Tim Cahill

A few years ago a producer asked Tim Cahill and me to record an interview at Yellowstone. Here’s the 10-minute pilot that came from that weekend in the snow.

BookTV telecast w/ Cahill, Allende et al

In 2004, the launch event for my book “A Sense of Place” was a conversation in San Francisco with Isabel Allende, Tim Cahill, Jeff Greenwald and Jan Morris. It’s 90 minute long but you can watch it in segments. Click here to watch the video.

Interview with Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson

I asked what he thinks of former SF Giants pitcher Brian Wilson. His reply: “Never heard of him.”

Aug. 16-21: Writing seminar with Tim Cahill on Idaho’s Salmon River

Michael Shapiro is co-teaching an on-river adventure writing workshop on one of America’s premier whitewater rivers: The Middle Fork of the Salmon River in Idaho. For details, see Idaho River Journey’s site.

David Sedaris’ subversive charm

David Sedaris is not a rock star. He’s an author, radio contributor, humorist, playwright, and essayist. Yet when he walks onstage Saturday night , October 30, at the Wells Fargo Center, he’ll be greeted with as much effusive enthusiasm as any heartthrob musician. This slight, 53-year-old man is not only talented, insightful and funny, with […]