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The Paragraphs
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Created from fragments used to write songs, this memoir recalls a life of music told in bursts of wild inspiration. Rick Berlin, the queer Boston music legend, formerly the frontman of Orchestra Luna, Berlin Airlift, Rick Berlin: The Movie, The Shelly Winters Project, and currently of The Nickel & Dime band, is known for his zany lyrics and unflinching wit. Exploring boyhood, filial relationships, animals, sex, drugs, and the dynamic social workings of Boston through the decades, Rick Berlin's work is "uncategorizable...part punk, part musical theater, part sentimental sap, part wordplay master. Gold" (Amanda Palmer).About Cutlass Press: Established in 2016 by the award-winning independent bookstore Papercuts, Cutlass Press publishes cutting-edge books as weapons of choice.
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"I love reading Berlin's words. All the pretty young boys and girls got nothing on Rick. He can light up the darkest places." - Carmelita (Bay State Rock, WAAF ) "Like Leonard Cohen, Rick Berlin's poetics are timeless, speak directly to the heart confronting us with postmodern mythologies." - Amy Rome "From the mind of an artist, Rick Berlin's writings are as unique as his music. He continues to be a Boston treasure." - Oedipus (WBCN, The Oedipus Project) "Though I fancy myself a busy and discerning person, I almost always stop what I'm doing to read Rick's work when it arrives in my inbox. His incisive, fearless vignettes cut to the bone and then pat you on the back. Relentlessly colorful, necessarily detailed, and sometimes nearly unbelievable, Rick's life stories are vital and disarming and everyone should read them." - April Greene (freelance writer) "Rick Berlin's writing is as raw, luminous, open-hearted, profane, musical, magical as the man himself. Put on your seat belts." - Beth Harrington (documentary filmmaker, The Winding Stream, member of The Modern Lovers) "At the age of 70, maybe older now, Berlin remains a free man. His defiance toward most of the tired categories of social life that hem others in is a reminder of the superiority of soul and a goad to the rest of us to go get some more of it. As Rick reminds us, it is free." - Christopher Mackin (Ownership Associates) "Rick Berlin is the voice of the generation that had the best time in the Boston music scene, and he is our voice still. Singing and writing voice, that is!" - Adrienne Wolffe Feddersen "Rick's voice is so strong they read like a transcript of a monologue. The ones that struck me the most were the ones about him as a kid or a young man. Clues to how he became the man he is. But what I think I loved most about them is the feeling I get from a lot of Rick's songs too: Life is sad, but in that sadness are moments of joy and magic." - Jeff Chasse (songwriter) "Such a mix of street edge with the humanity of a poet, Rick Berlin carries his life, his music and his community close. He writes about unbearably sweet horrors and a longing that keeps burning." - Jane Hudson (video/film artist, owner of Hudson ART, Inc.) "I love Berlin's 'paragraphs.' They allow me to escape from my pathetic life and slightly slip off into a place I rarely get to go. I enjoy reading every fine-tuned word he describes in detail every aspect of the story. Shit man, he could write a story about going to the mailbox in pink flip flops and somehow manage to make it exciting and worth daydreaming about!" - Tim Czifrik "I have been enjoying Rick Berlin's 'paragraphs' since his 'ich bin ein Berlinner' days. Rick is a master of imagery. His vignettes of the human condition are at once raw and poignant. Rick's words stay with the reader long after a 'paragraph' has been absorbed. His writing is succinct and powerful. This is a must-read, not just for fans of Rick's music, but for anyone who enjoys the art of thinking." - Susan M. Vertullo "Reaching in, as he's been doing, goes beyond your own experiences and helps to provide a map for others to do so for themselves." - Bob Lewis (owner, president of Video Visuals)

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