Scream and Run Away
December 3, 2006 6:27 PM   Subscribe

Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler in real life), author of the 13 books in "A Series of Unfortunate Events" [Flash], has now released the album A Tragic Treasury [Sound] in which he plays the acordian. The CD also features Stephin Merritt, with whom Handler was in the band called The Magnetic Fields. Handler is touring the country to plug the album and latest book. [via NPR]
posted by niles (22 comments total)

posted by retronic at 6:30 PM on December 3, 2006

...also spelled accordion
posted by horsemuth at 6:30 PM on December 3, 2006

damn you retronic
posted by horsemuth at 6:30 PM on December 3, 2006

Thanks. I knew I would mess this up somehow. (My spelling OCD only works on week days.)
posted by niles at 6:31 PM on December 3, 2006

Is acordian like the atheist version of being a Discordian? Because I think they would get a kick out of that.


Great thread niles.
posted by quin at 6:51 PM on December 3, 2006

You know who else played the accordion?

Hitler Weird Al.

And, to put this thread back on topic: It would appear that Daniel Handler also has a new movie that he's written coming out.
posted by quin at 6:57 PM on December 3, 2006

Handler also played on the MFields' 69 Love Songs and co-wrote the liner notes.
posted by mykescipark at 7:13 PM on December 3, 2006

Gotta point out here that while Daniel Handler has many accomplishments, being a Magnetic Field is not among them; he has played on their records, but the band is Stephin Merritt, Claudia Gonson, John Woo, and Sam Davol.
posted by escabeche at 7:14 PM on December 3, 2006

The "Unfortunate Events" books are one of those series that I developed an intense and irrational dislike for when I worked in the children's section of a library. Way too popular. There were always five or six of them waiting to be shelved, and often some bug-eyed little book worm hounding you as you pushed the cart, wanting to know if you had #7.

I should probably get over that.
posted by bookish at 7:31 PM on December 3, 2006

Damn. I'd been putting off reading the Lemony Snicket books, but was all set to tip after the Magnetic Fields thing.

Don't know why, just love that band. Or that guy, really. Merritt, that is.

See also The 6ths
posted by abulafa at 7:35 PM on December 3, 2006

horsemuth, great minds think alike (as do pendantic ones).

Regarding the 6ths...Merritt named the band (and both their releases, "Wasps' Nests" and "Hyacinths and Thistles") to give radio announcers trouble when back-announcing (or so goes the apocrypha).
posted by retronic at 7:52 PM on December 3, 2006

I heard the "Stuck on a Deserted Island with You" song (whatever it's called) on NPR's All Songs Considered, and it was great. The guy has a bizarre voice, but it suited the song. The lyrics were fantastic, I laughed and was simultaneously creeped out.
posted by arcticwoman at 7:58 PM on December 3, 2006

I heard the Stuck on a Deserted Island on NPR today too, and I've been singing it in my head for the past few hours. Hilariously catchy.
posted by painquale at 9:37 PM on December 3, 2006

The songs were the best part of the LS (audio)books.
posted by unmake at 10:01 PM on December 3, 2006

If you think you might have liked the Lemony Snicket books when you were little, but are now all growed up, you should try Handler's The Basic Eight and Watch Your Mouth.
posted by nicwolff at 10:02 PM on December 3, 2006

retronic : Merritt named the band (and both their releases, "Wasps' Nests" and "Hyacinths and Thistles") to give radio announcers trouble when back-announcing (or so goes the apocrypha).

I worked as a DJ for a couple of years (a couple of years ago) and after reading this, I attempted to back-list the name of the band and album. I always figured I was pretty good, but I gotta admit, that is tough on one try. (two tries was better, and I nailed it on the third. Problem is, DJs don't have three tries.)

Apocryphal or no, they chose titles that will definitely hurt some DJ's credibility.
posted by quin at 10:13 PM on December 3, 2006

I gotta say, the Magnetic Fields connection makes a lot of sense to me. The Magnetic Fields are the sort of band I would think I would like, but in reality I find them kind of annoying - just slightly too cutesy. That is how the Lemony Snicket books strike me as well... I was an insatiable fan of Roald Dahl as a kid, and always have loved dark humor, but the Lemony Snicket series (though I may be wrong - haven't actually read them) looks somehow just a bit too neat and caricatured to really hit the spot. I heard the NPR interview, which was fun but didn't make me feel a need to follow up, really. Do I have the wrong impression?
posted by mdn at 4:07 AM on December 4, 2006

Good question. Why not read one of the books? They're quite quick reads - one could get a decent impression over a cup of coffee in a bookstore. They're not exactly like Roald Dahl, but then I think different things are being aimed for.
posted by tannhauser at 6:15 AM on December 4, 2006

My band got to serve as entertainment at a Snicket event, and live he is a hilarious entertainer.
posted by drezdn at 7:52 AM on December 4, 2006

I gave The Basic Eight to my then 15 year old cousin for her birthday--thinking that she'd love the work Handler wrote under his own name--and it really upset her.
posted by brujita at 4:21 PM on December 4, 2006

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