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Janis' WorldCon Diary From 2001 Now Online
Originally published on her website in Ocobter 2001, we've uploaded Janis' WorldCon Diary from that year. It's a great read, so head on over to the Reading Room and check it out. Or you can just access it directly and give it a read.
Stars audiobook on CD finally available here!
The updated version of Stars: Original Stories Based on the Songs of Janis Ian is now available in our online store as a CD audio book. Featuring original short stories by 30 top science fiction authors, Stars is a huge anthology in both volume and talent. E
Stars was compiled and edited by Mike Resnick and Janis Ian and includes stories by Nebula and Hugo winners like Joe Haldeman, Jane Yolen, Harry Turtledove, Orson Scott Card, and Mercedes Lackey. Included, too, a story by Janis Ian.The stories 'have heart. They have life. They have truth. They move me,' says Janis Ian. 'As an artist I can ask for nothing more.'
You can purchase this brand new CD audio book version in our online store. You'll also find links to purchase the book as a downloadable audio book (from Audible) a paperback (from Amazon) or a Kindle download (from Amazon).
The Singer & The Song & Stars both nominated for 2015 Audie Awards!
The Singer & The Song has been nomiated for a prestigious Audie Award! Janis not only narrates this wonderful book from Miriam Therese Winter, she performs over twenty pieces of music, including an original song she wrote especially for the project. The Singer and the Song includes a performance of "Joy Is Like the Rain" and other songs penned by Miriam Therese Winter. The author and narrator, supported by friends who formed an interfaith chorus in the studio, perform a classic spiritual memoir in a way that will inspire anyone interested in living a life of love and service. The Singer & The Song is available in Janis' store.
For Stars, also nominated for an Audie Award, Janis and 30 top science fiction writers team up to create an astonishing book of original short fiction. Stars is a huge anthology in both volume and talent. Each story, available only here, is based on a Janis Ian song that meant something special to the author, who then wrote the story expressly for Stars, creating a meld of jazz, prose, and science fiction found nowhere else - a treasure trove for fans of both SF and Janis Ian! The amazing audio book is over twenty hours long and narrated by Janis, Gabrielle De Cuir, Emily Rankin, Stefan Rudnicki, Susan Hanfield, Kathe Mazur, Paul Boehmer and Kristoffer Tabori. The Stars audiobook is available at Audible.com.
You can find a complete list of nominees at the Audio Publishers Association website.
And now, on to the tour!
Starting with a few solo shows February 18, I'll be on tour most of the spring (ending with a few solo shows as well!) After that, outside of the occasional festival, I'll be shutting down for the rest of 2015 and probably most of 2016 in order to devote more time to writing. I'm hoping to finish a few projects in that period, and re-emerge from it with a lot of new work and energy. I hope everyone comes to the Paxton shows, because they really are marvelous - Tom and Robin and I have such a bang-up time on stage, it's almost sinful! And about the closest I'll ever get to being in a band again. Just way too much fun. We sing all the songs you'd expect - "At 17", "Jesse", "Bottle O' Wine", "Ramblin' Boy" - we sing on each others' songs (Tom's voice on "Through the Years" brings me to tears pretty much every time) - and in general, it's a lot of bang for your buck!!!
Thank you one and all!
The 2015 "White sale" raised over $20,000 net for Pearl Foundation scholarship endowments - a special thank you to everyone on Facebook who shared the news. We sold out of many items in the first two days - the G7 capos, Stella Adler sets, D'Addario Musician's Boxes, Grand Center DVD and others went like hotcakes. We were completely overhwlemed during the last 48 hours, with over 300 orders coming in just during that period. This was great!!!! The sale even led to the formation of a brand new page on my site - check out Gear for microphones, guitars, and more! Sign up for the Mailing List to be notified about future sales, and thank you all again!
The Singer & the Song receives prestigious Voice Arts nomination!
Janis' most recent audio book has been nominated for a Voice Arts award! In addition to narrating the life history of Medical Mission Sister Miriam Therese Winter, Janis sung 28 songs by the noted Catholic theologian for the project, spent several days learning correct pronunciation for words in the Navajo tongue as well as how to say things in languages ranging from Laotian to Hindi, and created an enormous "script" with notes on how to translate a song written for a women's prison choir into a single singer with wine glasses and a yellow highlighter for instruments.
An incredible story that spans 70+ years, and leads us everywhere from Khmer Rouge hideouts to the Hartford Seminary, we are thrilled that the book is being recognized, and "MT" - still thriving - is seeing the labors of her unstintingly generous life shared with so many
Janis and Tommy Emmanuel!
After a scant 10 minute's "rehearsal" in an unused trailer backstage at the Philadelphia Folk Festival, Tommy Emmanuel joined Janis on stage for two stunning closers - "At 17", and "Over the Rainbow".
Janis was completely unaware that when Tommy first moved to the "big city" of Sydney Australia, broke and renting a tiny room for $7.00 a night, a kindly pizza joint owner took pity on the young guitarist and played the song on a jukebox for him. Tommy said the fellow played it a dozen times for him that day, and every day thereafter he listened to it at least once. Completely unexpected magic and synchronicity.
Top 40 in Rolling Stone!
Janis' multi-award-winning album, Between the Lines, has been named by Rolling Stone Magazine as "One of the 40 Albums Baby Boomers Loved That Millenials Don't Know." Read the article as well as Janis' page in it.
I'm Still Standing is available!
Although the Strictly Solo album is currently only available for purchase at live shows, Janis has made "I'm Still Standing" available on iTunes and Amazon.com for downloading. Says she: "I've gotten so many requests, literally hundreds, from fans who want a copy of that song to play for themselves and their friends - it just seemed so important to people - so I've put that one track up. I hope everyone enjoys it!"
Want to contribute to a new project?
Janis just finished recording two self-funded projects near and dear to her heart - Mike Resnick's "Kirinyaga" and Isabel Miller's "Patience & Sarah." These projects are being funded through the sale of her guitars and contributions from people like you! If you like the idea use the button below or go to Paypal and send something to firstname.lastname@example.org. See below for a fuller explanation.
* NOTE. The other Paypal donation buttons on this site do NOT fund projects. They deposit directly to the Pearl Foundation!!! Frankly, we'd rather you put your money there, but if you have extra, we'll gladly take it for the projects fund!
Says Janis: "I've sold a National Steel and custom Les Paul to fund these projects because I love these books, and I firmly believe that out there is an audio book publisher who will "get it" and give them the time and attention they deserve.
About Kirinyaga, Amazon.com says:
"In Kirinyaga, Resnick presents the haunting and utterly compelling tale of one man's utopia. By the 22nd century in the African nation of Kenya, polluted cities sprawl...great animal herds are but distant memories... but Koriba, a distinguished, educated man of Kikuyu ancestry... is determined to build a utopian colony, not on earth, but on the terraformed planetoid he proudly names Kirinyaga... Reinstating the ancient customs and stringent laws of the Kikuyu people... he must face many challenges to the struggling colony's survival: from a brilliant young girl whose radiant intellect could threaten their traditional ways to the interference of "Maintenance" which holds the power to revoke the colony's charter.
Ironically, the Kirinyaga experiment threatens to collapse-not from violence or greed-but from humankind's insatiable desire for knowledge. The Kikuyu people can no more stand still in time than their planet can stop revolving around its sun. Deeply moving, swiftly paced, and profound in its implications...
About "Patience & Sarah":
Recipient of the American Library Association's very first Stonewall Award, this classic historical novel is based on two real women (painter Mary Ann Wilson and her companion, Miss Brundage) who lived together in a "Boston marriage" during the early 1800's. The book traces the relationship between Patience White (narrated by Jean Smart) and Sarah Dowling (narrated by Janis Ian) as they weather the puritanical beliefs of their small New England farm community.
Per Janis: "To call this a 'gay love story' is to limit the story. It's the tale of anyone who's ever fallen in love with the 'wrong' person, whose had to take on family, church, community, even friends in order to be true to themselves. The book itself is a multi-layered piece of historical fiction that also addresses the limited roles of women in America then and now, gender expression past and present, monetary freedom and entrapment, the interpretation of religion as it pertains to everyday life, the difference being able to read can make in a life, and ultimately, the triumph of love over ignorance and small-mindedness."
Janis Ian is waiving any fees for the creation of these projects. Funding is necessary to cover studio time, director, editing, room and board, talent and transportation costs. Kirinyaga has moderate funding due to Skyboat Media, Stefan Rudnicki and Gabrielle de Cuir donating their services, but it's bare bones beyond that. Mike Resnick has also waived any sort of advance because he wants KIRINYAGA to be narrated by Janis. Any kind of contribution for these projects is very appreciated!
If there are monies left over they will either go to creating an album of "old time" music by friends like Al Petteway, Amy White, and Diane Jones to accompany the "P&S" audio book, and other independent projects by Janis.
March UK Tour With Tom Paxton
Janis will be on tour with Tom Paxton during the month of March throughout the UK.
Shows are schecheduled for Birmingham, Bristol, Basingstoke, Liverpool, Gateshead, London, Cambridge, York and Glasgow.
More information about each date is available on the On Tour page.
School Library Journal loves The Tiny Mouse!
School Library Journal has given The Tiny Mouse a series of accolades, beginning with their stunning review, continuing with an article about the importance of music to reading, inspired by you-know-who. The book is currently on sale in our website store, and can be signed and personalized by Janis herself!!
The Singer & the Song wins an award & gets a blog!
Skyboat Media have put up a blog of the project - watch Janis play wine glasses, tune her guitar, and run her Mormon choir! See footage of "MT" talking about her song "Joy Is Like the Rain".
Janis' bold narration of Sister Miriam Therese Winter's autobiography has received the prestigious "Earphones Award" from Audiofile Magazine. The audio book features over 20 songs performed by Janis, her first major recording since 2006. For more information about this incredible project - a true labor of love - read here.
We have just given away $76,000!!
Much thanks to everyone who made this year's Pearl Foundation disbursements possible - auction participants, website and live show purchases, Paypal buttons, checks and money orders. We appreciate every single cent! This year, we disbursed funds to continue endowing the Pearl Foundation scholarships as follows:
Warren Wilson College $23,000.
Berea College $46,000 (two scholarships)
Goddard College $7,000 (adding to present scholarship fund)
What a month!
What a month it's been! Though it's a little early to tell for sure, looks like the annual website sale raised over $4,500 for the Pearl Foundation! Added to the auction proceedings of @ $12,500, we are having a banner December. Thank you one and all!
Janis' new audio book released November 19th!
Janis' first big audio book project since she won the Grammy for her own audio book releases November 19th. The autobiography of Miriam Therese Winter, Medical Mission Sister, Catholic feminist theologian, songwriter and recording artist who sold out Carnegie Hall with her choir, "MT" is currently dean of the New Hartford Seminary's Feminist Studies department. At 75, she shows no signs of slowing down!
The audio book contains 28 songs and excerpts from songs by Winter; all but two are performed by Janis. (The exceptions are one original recording from Winter's choir in the 70's, and one small choir led by Janis for the recording.)
Janis calls it "a really American project. You have a Catholic nun who says she's 'defected in place'. A gay Jewish narrator, a lapsed Catholic director and semi-Buddhist producer, with several Mormon friends providing a choir here and there. Diversity coupled with sincerity, and respect for one another's cultures and religions. That's really what America is about."
She set out to make the recording as true to Winter's life as possible. "Here's a woman who, at age 16, decided to enter the nunnery. She wanted to go to Africa, but they made her stay and get a master's in music. Then came Vatican II, and they had no Catholic liturgy, so she wrote the liturgy. Off she went to Kenya afterwards, ministering to emaciated children. And then to Cambodia, Laos, the Khmer Rouge and their victims. She comes home, finally, to get her doctorate at Princeton, and Hartford calls her to head up their first feminist studies program. Between all that, she writes books about the relationship between quantum physics and theology, survives breast cancer, helps her own mother through her breast cancer, and realizes that God is so very, very much bigger than she'd ever thought, there isn't even a word for it any longer.
"I had a moment of enormous panic when I realized that I was supposed to single-handedly re-create 28 choir pieces... me and my little guitar. But the more I listened and sang MT's songs, the more I realized that her usic reflected the times, and her growth through those times. From 'Joy is Like the Rain' and 'Peter', where she's discovering her own relationship to the universe at large - to "It's a Long, long Road", where she joins the other church folk working within the civil rights movement, to 'Architect of All Creation' (my personal favorite) and the all-embracing 'I am the One' - she's bravely looked into her own heart, and her own church, and forged her own path. I tried to do the same with this book."
Kirkus Reviews names The Tiny Mouse a Best Children's Book!
Janis Ian's new book, The Tiny Mouse, with illustrations by Ingrid & Dieter Schubert, has been named a "Best Children's Book 2013" by the prestigious Kirkus Review. Visit Janis' new Youtube channel for videos.
The Tiny Mouse follows the adventures of a bored mouse who decides to go to sea and narrowly escapes a grisly death. In his moment of truth, he understands that it's better to be a whole mouse at home than someone's dinner at sea.
This book and CD set has not only Janis Ian singing "The Tiny Mouse" with a full band but also a version without vocals for singalong fun. A complete transcription for piano and guitar is also included, and children are encouraged to create their own videos, using the background music, then post to Youtube!!
Janis wins an An Audie Award!
We are proud to announce Janis has won an Audie in the "Best Narration by Author" category!!! This is the only awards program in the United States devoted entirely to honoring spoken word entertainment.
You can find a behind-the-scenes look at how the book was created by visiting the Skyboat Media tribute here.
The Audio Publishers Association, a non-profit trade organization, was formed in 1987 and serves the audio book industry much as the Grammys serve the music industry, advocating high production and technical standards, serving as a networking and educational forum, and bringing together everyone involved in audiobooks.
Janis WINS the GRAMMY!
We are thrilled to announce that Janis has won the 2013 GRAMMY award for "Best Spoken Word Album"! Up against Bill Clinton, Michelle Obama, Ellen Degeneres and Rachel Maddow, Janis' autobiography Society's Child took home the award.
In honor of her GRAMMY win, Audible.com are offering a free 17 minute sample of the book! Look under the cover photo and press "Sample."
You can also visit the Official Grammy website to watch video footage of the award presentation.
Check The Latest Update!
Janis' audiobook is a Booklist 2012 Editor's Choice!
Booklist has chosen the audiobook "Society's Child: My Autobiography", recently nominated for a Best Spoken Word GRAMMY award, as part of it's 2012 Editor's Choice list. Booklist is the American Library Association's organ for reviews, interviews, and the like. It goes not just to libraries but to bookstores, schools, and other institutions all over the country. As someone who constantly gives thanks to the library system for what it has done, and continues to do, for her, Janis does whatever she can to promote them. This Editor's Choice is particularly appropriate - congratulations, Janis!
New Free Downloads!
We've posted several new free downloads on the Free Downloads page, including the full version of "I Am The One" as well as "Play Like A Girl" from the 2000 release "god & the fbi." Just right click on the download button to download the MP3 files.
New "Author's preferred" Kindle and paperback editions of Society's Child for overseas purchasers!
I've just published a new Kindle edition of my autobiography, Society's Child, specifically for fans wanting to order outside North America. Up until now, your only option was to order through US outlets and pay heavy shipping - we fixed that now! Done in conjunction with Lucky Bat Books, it contains links to music and photos and more. And in our continuing effort to save you shipping costs, the trade paperback version should also be available on your local Amazon site. Just search for the 2012 Author's Preferred Edition of Society's Child.
In honor of the digital release of the Stars anthology, we are offering Janis' contribution ("Second Person Unmasked") for free reading, in the hopes that it will convince you to buy the book!
Stars: Original Stories Based On the Songs Of Janis Ian received three "best" & seventeen honorable mentions (including Janis' story!) in Year's Best SF 2004, ed. by Gardner Dozois.
The book also features Spider Robinson, David Gerrold, Robert Sawyer, Stephen Baxter, Nancy Kress, Howard Waldrop, Harry Turtledove.
"This dazzling, highly original anthology, ignited by the meeting of songwriter Ian and a host of SF writers affected by her music at the 2001 Worldcon, showcases 30 mostly superior stories, each based on one of her songs. Some contributors take Ian at her word that science fiction is 'the jazz of prose,' responding to many of society's sharpest wounds with bittersweet improvisatory descants, like Terry Bisson in 'Come Dance with Me,' David Gerrold in 'Riding Janis' and Orson Scott Card in 'Inventing Lovers on the Phone,' tales that probe the angst of adolescence… The entire anthology seems to vibrate with the death throes of one world passing away, while far stranger ones struggle to be born. Their commonality, Ian tells us in her introduction, is that 'They have heart. They have life. They have truth.' No artist - nor any reader - could ask for more." - Publisher's Weekly
The "Tiny Mouse" has launched!
Janis' song "The Tiny Mouse", (lyrics) written especially for The Boat Project, has become reality. The little wooden carving of a mouse, which inspired the song, has been placed at the top of the steering wheel on the boat, which will be touring the UK and going down the river Thames as part of the Olympic Ceremonies this summer.
"It was an enormous honor to be one of only fifteen songwriters asked to participate in this project," said Janis. "Though I can't participate in the Olympics as a high jumper, my previous goal in life, 'The Tiny Mouse' has allowed me to play some small role in the festivities."
You can pre-order at Amazon UK.
It will be available on Amazon US and iTunes soon after.
Lyrics are here.
"Nothing Special," featuring "Days Like These" chosen for Academy of Motion Pictures collection!
From the writer/director, Angela Garcia Combs:
I am writing to share some exciting news about our film, "Nothing Special". The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, wrote to us to ask if they could include "Nothing Special" in their curated Permanent Core Collection. I was informed that they had tracked the film and felt it was worthy of inclusion in their permanent collection by virtue of its artistic and educational merit. The materials will be preserved and the script and film will be used as a teaching tool for new writers and filmmakers. It's a great honor to have achieved this kind of critical recognition, and I'd like to thank all the great talent that worked on this piece for your support, belief and the lending of your talent to achieve this unexpected recognition. Wonderful and worthy is your work, talent, and support, and I look forward to many more great collaborations and adventures.
Angela Garcia Combs Writer/Director
Janis featured in The London Times!
Janis was recently featured in The London Times. David Sinclair wrote a glowing, four star review of her recent show at Cadogan Hall in London.
Here's an excerpt from the review:
"A teenage prodigy who enjoyed her first hit record when she was 15 and was a "has-been by the age of 16", Ian has since survived a succession of emotional trials and upheaveals to become the 60-year old grande dame of the singer-songwriter tendency that she is today. A short, silver-haired, Jewish woman from New Yor City, Ian stood alone on the stage - no sitting around for her. The show was all about the songs, the lyrics, the person; but posterity also demands a quick mention of her acoustic guitar. She played it so beautifully, with an attention to touch and tone far exceeding that of the great majority of singers accompanying themselves in this way. As she san encores of "Jesse" and "Stars" (there was) a joy among the audience that was palpable."
You can read and/or download a clipping of the review here.
Read Janis' library speech.
Janis was recently honored to be asked to address the annual start-of-school convocation of Nashville school librarians. She spoke deeply and from the heart about what libraries have meant to her, both in and out of school, bringing many in the audience of several hundred to tears. A quote from the speech has been reprinted at the American Library Association's site, and the full text can be read on the Metro Nashville public school site here:
"Welcome Home" Wins 2010 Asimov's Readers Award!
Janis' song "Welcome Home" has won the 2010 Asimov's Readers' Award for best poem! She joins (among others) fellow honorees Carol Emshwiller, Michael Swanwick, and Michael Whalen.
Said Janis: "As a loyal Asimov's reader since the magazine began in 1977 - and also as a former neighbor of Isaac Asimov's in Manhattan - this is a wonderful honor. I wrote 'Welcome Home' from the heart, and I'm so glad the readers agreed!"
See a list of all the winners.
Read the lyrics.
Yes, we got to donate $90,000!
Just hit the Newsroom link on the home page to see what we're talking about! Outside of an impending trip to Japan, work with Kevin Eubanks and plans for a European tour, Janis and her fans were able to donate a stunning $90,000 in scholarship funds this year!
About The 'Search The Site' Function
This new site utilizes a sophisticated Search Engine powered by Google. It searches the entire www.janisian.com site. However, it can take awhile for Google to update its records for this site.
Right now it is still searching through a lot of information found on the pages of the OLD site.
If you click on a search result that is pointed to an old, deleted page you will arrive at our custom "Page Not Found" page.
Since we completely deleted the old site and built an entirely new site it will take a little while for Google to begin indexing these new pages and discarding the old pages. Once it does that the search results will begin to reflect content from this new site and not the old one. Thanks for your patience.
click on any date for full information
click again to close that date
All tour dates updated on April 19, 2015
New tour dates are coming soon!