PAUL BOWLES

A Hundred Camels In The Courtyard

(Dom) Used 2xCD $17.00

Four tales of contemporary life in a land where cannabis, rather than alcohol, customarily provides a way out of the phenomenological world. Thus, in these stories, Salam uses suggestions supplied by smoking kif to rid himself of a possible enemy; He of the Assembly catches himself up in the mesh of his own kif-dream and begins to act it out in reality; Idir’s victory over Lahcen is the classical story of the kif-smoker’s ability to outwit the drinker; Driss the soldier, aided by kif, proves the existence of magic to his enlightened superior officer. For all of them, the kif pipe is the means to attaining a state of communication not only with others but above all with themselves. On this 1999 reissue, originally released in 1981 by Cadmus Editions, Bowles’s gravelly speech is the perfect medium in which to encounter these smoke-filled stories. At times, Moroccan music and chattering voices can be heard faintly in the background, a presumably unintended decoration that inevitably flavors the final mix.

PAUL BOWLES

Black Star At The Point Of Darkness

(Sub Rosa) Used CD $11.00

Recorded in Tangier, this album is a unique kaleidoscope of Paul Bowles’ talents. The writer, musician, musicologist and wanderer reads poems and short stories, and shares recordings of ritual Morrocan music. Jean-Luc Fafchamps performs what Bowles considered one of his most accomplished works, the Six Preludes for Piano.