If you grew up with the music of the 1950’s and 1960’s, Ticket Stubs and Liner Notes is for you. But even if you’re a grandchild—or great grandchild—of the iconic Chuck Berry, whom Tim Hunt describes as “that master of ironic innocence and innuendo,” then Hunt’s rockin’ collection is for you too. For the poems in this collection are not just about music; they create it as well as any words on a page ever could. Reading this mesmerizing book, we’re ready to “kneel / and light the guitar” to listen to “shovel and coal, debt, the Company Store / and another day. The actual world.” There’s a world in these poems that never drag, are never out of sync so that we’re no longer “alone in our darkened rooms.” When “the pick is / a hummingbird’s wing,” “the moon hitches / its overalls and eases down into its chair / on some porch behind that hill, leaving / only the dark ridge and spray of stars.” Read this book and you’ll be sprayed with stars.
— Wendy Barker, author of One Blackbird at a Time
When I hear Van Morrison say he’s going down the old mine with a transistor radio in “Brown-Eyed Girl,” I always wonder if young folks are going to know what he’s talking about. They would if they read this marvelous book. In the pleasure it offers and the knowledge it imparts, Ticket Stubs & Liner Notes provides more than a soundtrack to the dawn of the present day—it also supplies a vocabulary essential to our understanding.
— David Kirby, author of Get Up, Please
In writing about the Golden Age of Rock and Roll in Ticket Stubs & Liner Notes, Tim Hunt combines reverent allegiance with badass swagger. The guitar gods and gargoyles, heroes, heroines, hippies, and musical rascals that make up his pantheon find a shrewd acolyte in Hunt. In poem after poem, with a keen eye and perfect pitch, Hunt recreates an American soundtrack that turns our mythical exceptionalism on its head, while offering in its place, a vision that aligns Whitman’s freedom with Wolfman Jack’s. It is the record of musical devotion that sought salvation, from civil unrest, unjust wars, criminal leaders, and rampant capitalism, not to mention our own mealy conformism. In this he joins the ranks of such poets as Dorianne Laux, Mark Halliday, David Kirby, and Michael Waters, bards of rock whose own songs explore, through the apotheosis of musical rebels, the longing of our demotic souls.
— David Rigsbee, author of This Much I Can Tell You