Dear David Byrne,

First off, thanks for the kind Thanksgiving wishes and the unusual hyperlink to various turkey-shaped items! I thought that my access to such Web oddities would be cut off once my aunt forsook Hotmail. But no!

It’s also pleasant to hear that you and Mr. Slim are back together—for months I lay awake, fearing you two might never top the “Toe Jam.” But a concept album about the wife of Ferdinand Marcos? Touché, sir! Plus, what an array of cameos—Santigold? Sharon Jones? Is Eno in on this thing? Good Lord this is gonna be weird!

Intrigued by your anticipated “rebranding,”
Arts Desk

P.S. Glad you’re still in touch with Santa’s Elves. Didn’t I see them onstage during last year’s “Everything That Happens” tour? Oh, those were just Siberian midgets? My bad.

[Full email below the jump.]


Sorry for the mass mailing. I missed saying hi to some of you at the office Turkeyfest, but hope everyone had a good time. See you all next year.

I have, after many years, finished the Here Lies Love CD project – at least this iteration of it. It will come out in late February on Nonesuch. It’s a collaboration with Fatboy Slim, an upbeat series of songs sung each one by a different singer. The songs are about Imelda Marcos and Estrella Cumpas, the woman who raised her. The package includes 2 CDs (22 songs), a DVD with videos of 6 of those songs, and a 100-page book that explains it all. Singers include Florence Welch (of Florence + The Machine), Sia, Santigold, Nellie McKay, Sharon Jones, St. Vincent, Róisín Murphy and many more (even me on 1 and 1/2)… I am pretty excited about this, but who knows, it might just make people crazy.

We’ll see. There will be more concrete news, with links and music, in early January.

In the meantime, I have decided to rebrand myself, inspired by Philip Morris changing their name to Altria, Blackwater to Xe, and the train I’m riding on right now that calls itself Acela – none of which mean anything, but they are cleverly evocative. When I decide on the magic word, you’ll be the first to know.

-David Byrne


P.S. Santa’s elves have stock of Bicycle Diaries, fresh from their polar workshop.