Brian Brennan has previously been featured a number of times on Reading Recommendations, first in Nov. 2013 when he was the 6th author I promoted here, but significantly on my other blog, when he announced he’d be reprising his Brief Encounters series of columns he wrote for The Calgary Herald, back in the day, and running them again in the new online magazine, Facts & Opinions. At the time, I had said to Brian, “You know, this collection of essays might make a great book …” and, what do you know? Here’s Brian to tell us about his most recent publication!”
Brief Encounters: Conversations with Celebrities
by Brian Brennan
Genre: Nonfiction, journalism
Brief Encounters is a collection of 63 stories drawn from interviews I did with such luminaries as Sophia Loren, Tennessee Williams, Leon Uris and Tammy Wynette during my 15 years as an arts and entertainment reporter. The interviews were conducted originally for the Southam newspapers in Canada, reimagined and expanded for the respected online journal Facts & Opinions and now available as an eBook.
Why does the song “Amazing Grace” still occupy a very special place in the repertoire of singer Judy Collins? Why did Robertson Davies abandon what appeared to be a successful career as a playwright in Canada to start writing novels? Why did Sophia Loren go back to Italy to serve a jail term for tax evasion? Why did Tom Lehrer totally disappear from the scene after establishing himself as one of America’s cleverest and wittiest satirical songwriters? Why did Michael Nesmith quit The Monkees to start making music videos? Why did Shari Lewis start conducting symphony orchestras after she had endeared herself to kids all over the world with a comedy ventriloquism routine involving a cute sock puppet named Lamb Chop? Why did Chubby Checker go through 20 pairs of platform boots a year to keep his audiences twisting the night away? These are some of the questions Brian Brennan asks and answers in this collection of stories based on conversations he had with celebrities during his 15 years as a newspaper entertainment reporter. In many instances, Brennan reports on things they said which weren’t included in the original articles. The featured celebrities also include Tennessee Williams, Chuck Berry, Tammy Wynette, Bob Newhart and many others.
For information on all of Brian’s books, please check out his website.