Willie Nelson: From Depression To Quarantine

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Willie Nelson, now living through a global pandemic at 87 years old, was born in Texas hill country in 1933. No one could’ve predicted the longevity of Willie’s music career, and the fact that he’d still be releasing new music at his advanced age. Yet this month, he released his 70th album, First Rose Of Spring – another collection of recordings produced by Willie’s longtime co-writer/collaborator Buddy Cannon. For someone who was born during the Depression, it’s amazing to think about also living through something as massive as the COVID-19 pandemic. There were many unforeseen cancellations for Willie this year as a result of the year’s events – Farm Aid, Willie’s  Fourth Of July Picnic, The Luck, Texas Reunion – that had to ultimately become virtual events. For a humble guitar picker that loves life ‘on the road,’ that can’t be an easy adjustment – to shelter in place, to not interact with fans and audiences one on one – that’s just not as fun. It can’t be an easy adjustment for someone that’s spent three quarters of a century performing for live audiences. Luckily, for Willie, he’s able to continue to make music at home and ride out these uncertain times with his close knit family. We can’t wait to see him – and the family – on the road again.

For more information on the upcoming Willie Nelson: A Graphic History from NBM Comics Biographies, go here.

 

 

 

 

NBM Named One of CBR’s “10 Indie Comic Publishers To Watch Out For”

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CBR.com, which has evolved into a site that tends to focus on listicals, has added NBM Graphic Novels as their number one selection in their “10 Independent Comic Publishers To Watch Out For” list.

As CBR notes, “NBM has billed itself as America’s first ever graphic novel publisher and it certainly showcases a full range of content that suggests it knows how to maneuver in the industry.

With over 200 graphic novels, the company has a penchant for creating comics based on real people such as the Beatles, Bob Marley, and Da Vinci. NBM is a unique company with a lot of quirks, but it could perhaps pave the way to how the industry will change over the next couple of years since it has demonstrated continued longevity.”

Thanks, CBR! After 44 years in comics, it’s always nice to be recognized.

T.J. Kirsch Talks Willie Nelson: A Graphic History

This week I sat down comfortably in my office and talked to Chad Burdette from the Times Union – Comics Multiverse Blog. We talked about the impetus of Willie Nelson: A Graphic History and my experience of the process overall.

Be sure to pre-order wherever books are sold!

Times Union Comics Multiverse Interview

Find out more about the book on the NBM website – Willie Nelson: A Graphic History

And find an independent bookseller to preorder from on Indiebound.org

-T.J.

 

And the award goes to: Wasco

 

As Comic Artist Laureate of The Netherlands, one of my “duties” is to hand the prestigious Stripschapprijs, Holland’s one and only comics prize, to the winner. This year, that’s Wasco, a remarkable artist whose work has influenced comics makers worldwide.

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Despite the current restrictions, I  was able to hand him the statuette that comes with the prize, in an almost empty cinema where Wasco was regaled with messages from his friends – you can watch the proceedings (in Dutch) in this YouTube registration.

In Conversation with Silent Invasion Creators

 

space_01A number of weeks ago Larry Hancock and I chatted with by John Swinimer, the host of the True North Country Comics Podcast to promote our appearance at this year’s now cancelled Toronto Comics Arts Festival. We had planned to launch the newly-released Abductions, Book Three of The Silent Invasion series at TCAF 2020.

Tune in and enjoy our conversation with John here.

In the meantime, follow us on Facebook.

And remember to Watch the Skies!

Abductions is coming but here’s a blast from our past!

Way back in the distant past (remember those days?), we created this 7-page tale telling the story of Dick Mallet’s last case. If you recall, it was Dick Mallet’s mysterious disappearance at the beginning The Great Fear that was the catalyst to get this wild goose chase going. Presented here for the first time in many years, is the story that explains how poor old Dick Mallet ended up on a lonely road somewhere in America back in the halcyon days of 1952.

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Click here for more information about The Silent Invasion.

Watch for Abductions! Coming Soon!

Yes, Abductions, Book Three of The Silent Invasion will be released very shortly. Our challenge this week will be to post something every day.

Today, I’m going to give you a peek at some work from Book Four which will be released next year.

Here is the evolution of one page from Chapter Two of Book Four.

The initial rough of said page drawn with a big fat marker:

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Here is the first version of the pencils:

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Then after much thought the page was re-pencilled to this:

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Below is the inked version. Some background details are missing in panel 4. And we are still waiting for the wordsmith to provide words to the page. Of course when Larry sees this blog post that will the first time he’s seen the almost finished page.

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All of these images were shot with a phone camera in my kitchen under bad lighting.

Tomorrow: the artist’s secret sanctum; or pages from an alternate world Silent Invasion?

Remember, watch the skies! And stay healthy!

 

Abductions is Coming!

Stay Safe and Enjoy Abductions, Book Three of The Silent Invasion series

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Presented in glorious black and white, Abductions is an escapist, fun-filled, paranoia-filled romp through 1965-era Union City in which private detective Phil Housley searches for Matt Sinkage—the man he thought he killed six years earlier (see Books One and Two of our series for more conspiracy-riddled tales from America’s fictional heartland).

Here’s a short sequence from Chapter Two of Abductions:

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And then Phil Housley is mesmerized by the 25-yard end zones while watching a Canadian Football League game between the British Columbia Lions and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats:

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For more previews click here.

And remember to watch the skies while you stay at home.

NBM Digital Sale Offers 4 Intro GNs for $1.99 each!

As many people find themselves quarantined at home, comic readers have found themselves with an opportunity to not only catch up on their own purchases, but also use the time to discover some new titles.

With that in mind, NBM is putting four titles on sale from April 1st, through April 30th for just $1.99 each!

Here’s what’s available:


The Silent Invasion Vol.1 : Red Shadows
Michael Cherkas & Larry Hancock
Introduction by Max Allan Collins

In this era of fake news and ‘deep state’ this couldn’t be more timely! The paranoid cult-classic science fiction mystery of the early days of indie comics returns! The series will begin with two books reprinting the original volumes, followed by the never before collected third album and concluding with an all-new fourth book of this epic series of conspiracy and paranoia.

Set against the background of a nightmarish 1950s crawling with communist spies, corrupt FBI agents, McCarthyites, Stalinists, cold warriors, flying saucers, mysterious government organizations, The Silent Invasion weaves a byzantine tale of mystery and deceit as a bewildered investigative reporter Matt Sinkage pursues the truth behind an apparent alien invasion of earth that points to involvement at the highest levels of American government officials.


Zombillenium Vol.1: Gretchen
Arthur de Pins

Francis von Bloodt, vampire, a good family man, manages the theme park Zombillenium. They don’t just hire anyone, at Zombillenium: mere mortals need not apply, the park works only with genuine werewolves, vampires and zombies.

This is what Aurelian gets to discover as, burnt out, deceived by his wife, he finally gets hired in spite of himself in this strange business. Gretchen, a plucky trainee witch, helps him get around…


Science – A Discovery in Comics
Margreet de Heer

Science: dull or hard to understand? Not if you read this book! The creators of Philosophy – a Discovery in Comics take on a new challenge, and explain the different scientific disciplines in clear, colorful chapters.

Who exclaimed “Eureka” and why?

Why did Galileo get into a fight with the Church?

What happens when you have your DNA tested?

All these questions and more are answered in a chronological journey from ancient times to modern Quantum Theory, with creators Margreet and Yiri as your witty guides.

A great comic book for anyone who wants to learn in a fun way the bigger framework of science, or brush up on what they learned in school.


A Treasury of Victorian Murder: The Borden Tragedy
Rick Geary

“Lizzie Borden took an axe, gave her mother forty whacks, when she saw what she had done, she gave her father forty-one!”

In this volume of Geary’s Treasury, the famous Lizzie Borden double murder is explored with as much attention to well -researched detail as in his Jack the Ripper. This is another celebrated murder of last century, the one that lead to the infamous school rhyme.

The parallel between this old case and OJ Simpson’s is striking: both defendants had unblemished reputations; the double murders were gruesome; there were no witnesses and no weapons found; the cases took the media by storm. Both wealthy defendants hired expensive lawyers who convinced the jury of reasonable doubt. Both remain under a cloud of suspicion…

All titles are on sale at ComiXology and your favorite e-tailer through 4/30