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Sample 1 | Sample 2 | Sample 3
Originally published in 1969, Who Really Cares began as a collection of the poems Janis had been writing since the age of seven. The book was later expanded with 10 previously unpublished poems that had been rejected by the original publisher, and a new poem. Janis took the opportunity afforded by her winning a Spoken Word Grammy to create this audiobook.
Janis: "I was always a little embarrassed at having a book of my 'poetry' out, especially because I was just fifteen, when everything is embarrassing.... Also, I'm a songwriter, not a poet. They're very different disciplines. I love the work of Diane Wakoski, Wallace Stevens, T. S. Eliot - to me, those are real poets.
"But the fact that it stayed in print 45+ years, and that many of my music fans drew a direct line from my early efforts at poetry to my later work as a songwriter, kept it in the back of my mind.
"I love narrating, so it was natural that I begin wondering whether this poetry could be made into an interesting audiobook. Once Jorge Reyes and I got into the studio, we started fooling with additional commentary before the poems, then added some keyboard underscoring. By the time we were done, I was thinking 'By gosh, this is so much better than I thought it could be!'
"As a side-note, I recently discovered Johnny Cash kept a well-thumbed copy of the original book in his personal library. Who am I to argue with Johnny Cash?!"
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