Shel Silverstein's The Missing Piece Meets the Big O is one of my favorite books for kids. You might love The Giving Tree, or Where the Sidewalk Ends, or any one of the prolific Silverstein's other works, too. But until yesterday, I had no idea about the breadth of Silverstein's talents.
On my way to work, I heard an interview on the Bob Edwards Show (as an aside, Edwards is a treasure, and it remains a shame that SiriusXM has decided not to record new episodes) with Bobby Bare and Bobby Bare Jr. from 2010. The Bares, notable musicians in their own right, had just produced a CD of songs written by family friend Silverstein and covered by artists like Lucinda Williams, My Morning Jacket, Kris Kristofferson, Andrew Bird, and John Prine.
As I started listening to the interview, I thought, 'hey, that's cute - they turned some Shel Silverstein poems into songs'. Goes to show you what I know.
Shel Silverstein wrote 'A Boy Named Sue'. Shel Silverstein. The children's book author. Wrote one of the enduring classics in country music history.
He also wrote 'The Cover of the Rolling Stone', made memorable by Doctor Hook & The Medicine Show.
'Twistable, Turnable Man', the name of the Silverstein tribute record, features a cover of the Doctor Hook hit by the inimitable Black Francis and his Pixies bandmate Joey Santiago. It's terrific: