The web page of the ABPress based in Oxford and Sibiu, soon open for business: muses and misspells on its books. Randomly decrepit, stiff joints, possibly neo-bankrupt: so out of touch it needs help, but so analogue it cannot be helped. Nonetheless temperamentally enthusiastic, moderately irascible.
ALBION is an old word for England; BEATNIK is an American slang and constructed word for AN ATTITUDE OF MIND, introduced by JACK KEROUAC in 1948 (he claimed from the word ‘beatific’).
In June the first 12 books in the American Retro series are to be published :-
America witnessed great social transition between the end of the American Civil War and the beginning of the First World War. The pioneering days of the open American frontier gave way to the suburban, skyscraper sprawl of inner city life. Depictions of rural idyll and its regional traditions of local colour writing were carried forward, but a metropolitan mode of an unforeseen scale was introduced to its literature as well. Descriptions of urbanity and culture, but also claustrophobic poverty, social distress and a new politics came with this vast lifestyle.
In September, the first 12 books in the British Retro series are to be published :-
The early 1900s use of ‘highbrow’, ‘middlebrow’ and ‘lowbrow’ to denote literature may not have mirrored Britain’s class system exactly, but do suggest its hierarchy. Thorstein Veblen’s book The Theory of the Leisured Class, published in 1899, introduced the concept of ‘conspicuous consumption’: he was critical of William Morris, whose “limp vellum fitted with thongs” grandstanded obsoletism. The rampant aestheticism of Paget and Wilde and the artisan virtue signalling of Ruskin and Morris were met by a combination of the profit and loss of the abacus and aesthetic judgement that rejoiced in feeding the five thousand rather than just the disciples. The publishing that emerged was strongly utilitarian and is the high tide moment of Britain’s book trade.
Albion Beatnik Press published SARAH GILLESPIE’s first collection of poetry at the end of 2016: Queen Ithaca Blues. Sarah tours often, do catch her in concert, for Sarah is simply the best singer songwriter in the U.K. at the moment. She has recorded four studio albums now, each hast received widespread critical acclaim and much radio airplay on various BBC stations, also on public radio in America; she appears on stuff like Woman’s Hour as well (a bit gobby). She combines demotic, raw beat poetry lyric with a wacky and individual musical style that nods to jazz and to folk. Sarah tours often in Europe and the United Sates. As with her lyrics, Sarah’s poetry bristles with brio. Caroline Bird describes Sarah’s poetry as “bright with horror and stricken with laughter,” and that gets it just right. This is the stuff of real life. A film of some of her poems will be made this summer.