The Quietus - A new rock music and pop culture website

Baker's Dozen

Crime Plays: Writer Ian Rankin On His 13 Favourite Albums
Luke Turner , November 21st, 2012 07:37

Ian Rankin talks to Luke Turner about his life in music, and how he'd like to write novels based on Joy Division and David Bowie albums


Jackie Leven - Creatures Of Light And Darkness
I thought Rebus would be a fan of Jackie Leven's music. Songs about hard working class men who aren't really in charge of their emotions. I didn't know that he was a fan of the books… he was reading one of the books on an aeroplane when he was on tour, and went 'Jesus, that's me'. So he got in touch with my publisher, we eventually got to meet and ended up working together. We did an album for Cooking Vinyl, then last year around about this time somebody said to me 'you know Jackie's not very well'. The next thing I knew he was dead, it was shocking and unexpected. The new book is dedicated to him, and the title is a mondegreen, a misheard lyric. He's got a song where the chorus talks about standing in another man's rain, and I misheard it as "standing in another man's grave", so I called the book Standing In Another Man's Grave. The first thing that happens is Rebus goes to a funeral, he gets back to his car, puts the CD player on and there's Jackie Leven, and Rebus mishears it. Each section of the book starts with a different Jackie Leven song. Creatures Of Light And Darkness is such a great title, and that's what I write about in my books, that all of us human beings contain within them light and dark, and the question that crime fiction continually asks is why do we keep doing bad things to one another? Nature, nurture, the seven deadly sins, is it society, capitalism, immediate gratification and wanting what someone else has got so you take it from them if you can?