Bicycle Diaries audiobook Print
Thursday, 09 September 2010 14:35

David Byrne on the audiobook version of his "Bicycle Diaries":
After Bicycle Diaries came out in hardback about a year ago, I wondered to myself, what if the audiobook for this project was more like a cross between a podcast and a radio show instead of the usual author or actor reading in silence? I was thinking about the kind of radio show that NPR stations do from time to time, with background music, street sounds and other ambiences that help put the listener in the picture. So, I did one chapter ("New York") as a test, with me reading, and though it took a lot longer to assemble than I expected, I felt it did indeed do what I imagined it could; when you heard the tinkle of glasses and silverware during a restaurant "scene," boom!-you immediately felt you were there.

I also realized that this particular book could be consumed in any order, and it didn't matter which chapter you started with. So one could download and listen to the chapters as individual podcasts, in any sequence. I could even make the chapters available to download separately-you wouldn't need to buy the whole audiobook to see if you liked the experience. This all would have been impossible if these were made available only via CD (or cassette!)...or with many other types of books. Technology had, it seemed, created an opportunity for a whole new format to come into being. I'm not sure anything exactly like this has ever been done before. There are loads of downloadable audiobooks-but you have to listen to the chapters in the prescribed order, unless you are into self created meta fiction.

So, the first taste-the Introduction-is free. It's shorter than a regular chapter too. If you like it you can then buy individual chapters one by one, or receive a discount if you buy the whole unabridged book, which will be released on September 28. In the meantime, you can pre-order the audiobook here.

All the best from steamy Midtown
-DB