Michael Ruby reads from 'American Songbook'
Michael Ruby reads “Waiting for a Train,” a poem from his American Songbook, accompanied by Jed Shahar on percussion, toothbrushes, saxophone mouthpiece and Dictaphone, at a Greetings performance, Unnameable Books, Brooklyn, October 10, 2013. American Songbook has been published by Ugly Duckling Presse. It is a poetic response to the grand sweep of recorded vocal music in the 20th century. The poems are based on 75 recordings, with singers ranging from Bessie Smith to Tupac Shakur, and songs from a little-known Lomax prison recording to the last No. 1 pop hit of the century.