Signs of spring

| March 30, 2011

It’s March 30, and it snowed. Just a few inches, but still. Goes against what I’m doing, which is reviving, getting a full head of steam: writing for Lodging Hospitality again, rejoining the Cleveland Jazz Orchestra board (there are some wrinkles to work out) and producing a lot for ohioauthority. I’m also developing a proposal […]

iPad lust explained

| September 19, 2010

I haven’t read every word in J.D. Biersdorfer’s “iPad: The Missing Manual,” but I’ve read enough to know that a) I want an iPad more than I did before dipping into this; b) I could get around an iPad; and c) I understand the usefulness of an iPad and how its utility differs from other […]

Cleveland rocks again!

| June 11, 2010

Yes, that’s a cliché, but Justin Carr has given it new life with a 17-minute DVD about Cleveland’s role in rock. In it, I talk about the city and its rock tradition, along with Rock Hall head Terry Stewart, legendary promoter Mike Belkin, and Billy Bass, a remarkable DJ known for his farsightedness at WMMS […]

Putting the past in perspective

| May 25, 2010

I miss my parents lately, particularly now that I’ve read The Orientalist, Tom Reiss’ biography of Lev Nussimbaum, a tortured intellectual and prolific writer who lived while the great empires—the Ottoman, the Hapsburg, the Russian—died and totalitarianism took over. Nussimbaum was also known as Essad Bey and Kurban Said; he was a Jewish Orientalist whose […]

Up in the air

| April 22, 2010

I’m off to Europe on a hotel trip today, back May 1. Didn’t think I’d go because of the Iceland volcano, but the Continent seems to have quieted down, and the trip is on. I’ll be in Brussels, Barcelona, Toulon, Marseille, Chantilly and Munich. More train than plane is in the plans; it’ll be interesting […]


| March 29, 2010

I just started Week Two of mental stimulation marked by seeing six movies at the dazzling Cleveland International Film Festival, a great, too-short concert by John Zorn’s Masada Sextet (here’s my preview) and, this morning, reading “Atomic Age,” Martin Benjamin’s first, long-overdue book of photography. Karen and I went to the film festival for the […]

An apology to my website

| February 10, 2010

I’ve been neglectful of my website. It’s been nearly a month since I updated. I’ve been very busy, but it’s time to catch up. In mid-December, my wife suggested I e-mail as many people as I could think of to tell them I wanted to engage more. Being semi-retired can be lonely, even when there’s […]

My favorite books of 2009

| December 27, 2009

These are my best 2009 reads. I reviewed all of them except Box 21. Maybe I included that one because I read it for fun. T.J. Stiles, The First Tycoon (Knopf) Hans Fallada, Every Man Dies Alone (Melville House) Stieg Larsson, The Girl Who Played With Fire (Knopf) Peter Kuper, Diario de Oaxaca (PM Press) […]

The pleasures of local color

| June 28, 2009

I spent a few hours on Larchmere Boulevard in Cleveland yesterday, baking in the sun to sell copies of my book, “Cleveland Rock & Roll Memories.” I was part of the Loganberry Books local authors’ fair, which was part of a daylong flea market. Didn’t sell a single copy, but I saw a lot of […]

Rocker bliss

| June 13, 2009

Lylah and I drove to Fredericksburg, an Ohio town so small it seems like nothing more than a string of houses between huge tracts of land, today to pick up a bentwood rocker from Marty Hershberger. Marty’s Amish; his faith forbids him from having his picture taken, so I settled—happily—for a shot of one of […]

About the author

I'm a veteran critic and business writer who reads and listens and writes about music, books, hotels and travel. I've been in the business for many years and still enjoy it. My pride and joy is my book, Cleveland Rock & Roll Memories. Follow me on Twitter: