More fun with Google Translate: A Dutch treat

It used to be that when you published a book, you might get a review in a newspaper or two; a magazine, maybe — or an interview on television, if you were lucky. That’s probably still how it works for the Stephen Kings of the world. But for the rest of us, the untamed online frontier has an infinite number of places where one’s book might turn up, and I confess I’ve been obsessively looking for mentions of “Losering” out there.

Not all of them have been positive, of course, including this rather lukewarm assessment. A lot of the chatter is good fun, however, especially when it’s in a foreign language. Feed it into Google Translate, and a few giggles always come out. Like the one below, translated from Dutch on the altcountry.nl blog:

Ryan Adams is one of the main exponents in the alternative alt.countrywereld is beyond dispute. It is therefore not surprising that someone has taken the trouble to write a kind of biography. David Menconi is a journalist who wrote for No Depression among others. Accordingly he Adams repeatedly interviewed. Based on these interviews and conversations with people who in the past have had to deal with Adams, he sketches in the book, simply titled Ryan Adams, a portrait of the singer-songwriter. But the Ring Lose subtitle, A Story Of Whiskeytown, indicates that the focus of the book is on the period for Adams at solopad went. This choice was made for the fact that Adams since the autumn of 2001 did not want to talk to the author of the book. The reason is not clear Menconi but he suspects that it has to do with an enthusiastic review he wrote about the second solo album Gold. In any case, he has since then, except in a few email exchanges, no contact with Adams had. Under these circumstances it seems to me right that he has limited to the years before 2001. But unfortunately it is. Happily enough about those first years enough to tell.
The picture that emerges from the book is that of an extremely talented songwriter who the songs to speak out of his hat. On the other hand, you learn Adams also known as someone who is difficult with the pressure can go and loses himself in drink and drugs and all the misery that comes with it. At times a disgusting annoying guy who shows screwed. Just because it can. But also someone who knows how to capture emotional experiences in beautiful songs. Someone who is also not an easy childhood has had a turbulent love life. By the description of Menconi go back to listen differently to those three plates of Whiskeytown: Faithless Street, Strangers Almanac and Pneumonia.

Menconi with this book is not the definitive biography ‘of Adams’ life so far given. That could, given the previously written above circumstances, even (Adams has also tried to dissuade people with Menconi to speak). The book is more a personal look to become an important formative period in Adam’s life. A book that regard that period has ommissies. Thus, for example, I do not exactly clear why the punk rocker Adams suddenly a country rocker is. It is a great insight into the life of Adam in his time in Whiskeytown, his life in Raleigh, North Carolina and backgrounds are given to certain songs. Menconi has also made clear how it is that Adam in the later years suddenly with terrible metal plates and numbers came up.
But most important of reading this book is that it is me again to enjoy the best of what Adams has ever made: his music with Whiskeytown.

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9 thoughts on “More fun with Google Translate: A Dutch treat

  1. “the later years suddenly with terrible metal plates and numbers came up.” This mysterious part of the translation I think may refer to his shattered wrist. I think he has a plate or two in there to hold things together. But don’t have a clue about numbers coming up…
    Re lukewarm reviews. DRA fans are insatiable by nature, it would be hard for them to be content with a bio on him, especially one that focuses on only a part of his career.

  2. dmenconi

    Yeah, the “numbers” part is mysterious; all part of the rich pageantry of Google Translate, I guess. As for lukewarm responses, yeah, those are inevitable — and nothing to take too seriously. Given that I’ve been dishing opinions on the works of others for 30 years, I figure anything that comes back to me on this is karmic payback!

  3. kees

    Haha, google translate is great! The review is actually quite positive, the author says the book made him go back to the best music RA ever made: the Whiskeytown stuff…
    And re: the terrible metal plates and numbers: nothing to do with the wrist, but just the ‘metal’ records and songs… platen=records, nummers=songs

    • Ahh, thank you kees! One can be so utterly WRONG trying to piece clues together. Funny.

    • I so love the Whiskeytown stuff (underappreciated gems like Black Arrow, Bleeding Heart and all). And i don’t mind anyone saying Whiskeytown is their favorite part of his career. But “best music RA ever made” saddens me a bit. The word “ever” just seems so severe. Because he has made such wonderful music since Whiskeytown. Gorgeous stuff, high level. Stunning songs like Let it Ride, English Girls, La Ciengna, Nuclear (ha, didn’t expect that one!). With many underappreciated ones like She Wants to Play Hearts sprinkled in. The list making can go on and on. But yes, Whiskeytown was fab.

  4. dmenconi

    Ah, mystery solved — thank you!

  5. Brian

    At times a disgusting annoying guy who shows screwed. Just because it can.

  6. Pingback: “Losering” gets around: all the way to China « LoseringBook

  7. Pingback: Holland calling: Too Country and Proud off it | LoseringBook

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