Doug Hoekstra has quietly become an icon of Americana music and the Nashville scene, writing beautifully spare songs that contain genius-level observations about people. As Wired magazine has said about Hoekstra "a lot of people write songs, Hoekstra writes five-minute worlds." So it comes as no surprise that Hoekstra also writes fiction and nonfiction, collected in Bothering the Coffee Drinkers, which won an Independent Publishing Book Award.
The book is just as fascinating as Hoekstra's music. I really can't put it any better than the Midwest Book Review: "Each detail segues compactly into the next and before you know it, the book has hooked you in a distinctly quirky and entertaining way. Like all great music, it sounds easy to do. As all great musicians know, this is a deceptive effect that is only maintained through constant work and practice. [Hoekstra] is like a quirky art collector, putting together odd bits and ends, and then making them into something with an effect so much more than the mere sum of their collective oddities."
Hoekstra has just released a CD, Blooming Roses, which consists of another eleven perfectly understated songs that incorporate elements of country, rock, and even jazz. From the easy-going "Naper Vegas Scrabble Club" to the quirky/driving "Your Sweet Love," Hoekstra has crafted some great new songs. I interviewed Hoekstra recently to talk about both writing and music.