Doug Hoekstra – Bothering…

Books Reviews
Doug Hoekstra – Bothering…

Doug Hoekstra – Bothering the Coffee Drinkers

Tales of the touring life, served up with a crooked grin

Few understand the road-warrior life better than Doug Hoekstra, a well-respected Americana picker since the late ’80s. His stories in this new volume re?ect a life spent earning one’s daily bread in cafés and European speakeasies.

With a lyricist’s deep, sharp tang, he pours an overabundance of stray musings into a mug, and he keeps re?lling it with a weary smile for kudzu-cutting sax men and guys who talk about Miles but secretly love Van Morrison.

Music runs like a liquid vein through these 80-proof experiences. Hoekstra pours it out with a Dylan-esque fervor, giving us a sputtering catalog of beauties and terrors. He’s most effective in bookend personal essays, where he makes dandelion “weeshes” with his toddler and evokes Berlin’s chilly charms.

While a colorful ?ction writer, Hoekstra’s story—his song—compels the most. It hints at a monster autobiographer in the wings.

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