Book Club Inspiration: The Bushwick Book Club at SAL

By Erin Langner, Sonder Editor & WITS Program Associate

The Bushwick Book Club‘s ambition is something to be admired. As a subpar member of a standard kind of book club that meets monthly and always has a movie option for those of us that cannot keep up with the reading, it’s hard for me not to be impressed by a group who manages to not only read their books but also write and perform music in response to them on a regular, ongoing basis. Going even more above and beyond the book club call of duty, they also teach songwriting to youth and work with other organizations around Seattle, like here at SAL, where we’ve had the good fortune to hear their songs created in response to some of our visiting poets and authors when they have opened for our programs.

When Cheryl Strayed was here last year, I caught a sliver of her mellow, grounded personality during a walk though the hallways of Nathan Hale High School. When I heard the Bushwick Book Club artists MoZo perform the song, “No Use Waiting,” before Cheryl’s talk at Benaroya Hall that evening, the moment came back to me, through the delicately spare vocals and guitar strums that ground the song in the same sense of raw honesty I witnessed earlier in the day.

The Bushwick Book Club returns tomorrow night to respond to Geraldine Brooks’ vivid stories that come from such a range of places and backgrounds, I can’t even begin to guess where the inspiration will take them.

Upcoming SAL Events featuring the Bushwick Book Club:

Literary Arts Series: Geraldine Brooks
with Bushwick artists: Amanda Sue Winterhalter & Reggie Garrett
Thursday, January 28 – 7:30pm
Susan Brotman Auditorium at McCaw Hall

Words Matter 2016
with Bushwick artists: Read & Destroy
Thursday, March 10 – 6:00pm
Four Seasons Hotel

Literary Arts Series: Emily St. John Mandel
with Bushwick artist: Wes Weddell
Wednesday, March 23 – 7:30pm
Town Hall Seattle

Women You Need to Know Series: Jacqueline Woodson
with Bushwick artist: Alice Howe
Tuesday, April 12- 7:30pm
Town Hall Seattle

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