The Next Chapter·Bedside Books

Why singer-songwriter Kalle Mattson recommends an oral history of New York's music scene

The Ottawa-based singer loved Lizzy Goodman's Meet Me in the Bathroom.
Singer-songwriter Kalle Mattson recommends Meet Me in the Bathroom by Lizzy Goodman. (Colin Medley, Dey Street Books )
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Ottawa-based singer-songwriter Kalle Mattson is no stranger to change. His musical output is diverse — from folk to electropop, the Juno Award and Polaris Music Prize-nominated musician revels in transitory sounds that span genres.

It's appropriate that Mattson has chosen a book about transitory times for art communities in New York City. Below, he tells us why he's loving Meet Me in the Bathroom by Lizzy Goodman.

"Meet Me in the Bathroom starts off in the mid-to-late 90s and chronicles the New York rock scene and the New York musical renaissance that coincided with the change in the music industry and the evolution of the Internet.

"It's a very gossipy tale. There's lots of juicy musician and music industry gossip that I find fascinating. Oral histories always promise you the real story, or give you some anecdotes that you don't know, and this book really delivers on that. The one thing that was really shocking to me throughout this entire thing is how much every one of these bands came from some version of privilege. Julian Casablancas — the lead singer of The Strokes — his dad owns a modeling agency. They would essentially just go to the modeling agency and get all the models to come out to early Strokes shows. I can't express how easy, fun and gossipy this book is. It's just highly entertaining."

Kalle Mattson's comments have been edited for length and clarity.

Watch Kalle Mattson perform Without You for CBC Music's First Play Live

Kalle Mattson performs 'Without You' for CBC Music. 6:54

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