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Ian Rankin Single: Out Now!
Luke Turner , December 20th, 2012 07:48

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As previously reported on the Quietus, writer Ian Rankin has penned a short story for Tim Burgess' O Genesis record label, which has been read and recorded by the actor Craig Parkinson. We heard Parkinson read the tale of rock & roll derring do and sore right nostrils at our recent Minny Pops Lexington gig, and a very good job he did of it. Now, on the record, it features musical accompaniment and interludes by Tim Burgess (guitar, electronics) and Nik Colk Void (drums) from Factory Floor. 'A Little Bit Of Powder' was due to come out on Boxing Day, but O Gen have moved the date forward and you can now buy it on iTunes here. For a bit of background, Rankin told us the following about the story;

"Tim contacted me a while back with the idea of a spoken word project - me writing a story - to give out to his fans as a little Xmas gift. We met in Edinburgh in August and bounced around a few ideas. I then gathered my thoughts. A friend in Glasgow had told me an anecdote some months previously about a local musician who was told to meet another musician in a bar, and take his acoustic guitar with him. When he arrived, a bag of powder was produced - the ashes from a mutual friend and fellow musician - and sprinkled into the sound hole. This was apparently a last request from the dying musician - that his ashes be shared out among musician friends. So that was the genesis of the short story.

"I am a sucker for rock biographies and rock movies and decided to tell the story from the point of view of a hardened roadie. Thinking about the ashes, I then realised powder of a different kind might have been behind the breaking up of a band, and also that, by setting the story in winter, I could also add snow (hah!) to the mix. Three different types of powder... And after that all I had to do was write the bastard. It was fine actually - only took three or four days, then I timed myself reading it and found that it ran to around 15 minutes. Tim had wanted 5-6 minutes so it would fit on one side of a single. I reckoned this was a problem and told Tim as much, but he wanted to read the 'director's cut' before I got busy with the editing scissors. Having seen it and like it, he then insisted we couldn't leave out any of it."