June 25, 2013
Brooklyn library almost visited by a meta Kanye West
by Ariel Bogle
Last week, Mellow Pages, a new 250 square-foot Brooklyn library and reading room, was almost, maybe, visited by world-famous musician and recent father, Kanye West.
In what was probably one of the most exciting emails ever received by a library, even beer-friendly ones in Bushwick, someone claiming to be Kanye West’s publicist contacted the library asking if they could shoot footage inside the premises, with West to perhaps be in attendance. They even told Mellow Pages to invite people over to the library for the shoot.
The email went out…
Buzzfeed‘s Aylin Zafar writes that after friends and members of the library showed up music video and social media-ready, with no Kanye present, the place fell into a contemplative state of mind — was the shoot already taking place without anyone’s knowledge? Would Kanye ever come? Does Kanye just really like libraries? After all, West’s late mother was the chairwoman of the Chicago State University English department, so maybe he’s a fan of books? According to Buzzfeed‘s photos from the evening, some people even made the best of it and borrowed some.
No matter the mysterious publicist’s intentions, Mellow Pages’ members had a good time. The small library, founded by Matt Nelson and Jacob Perkins with the mission of carrying works by small presses, is a worthy project. As New York Times wrote earlier this year,
“Mr. Nelson and Jacob Perkins, both 26, started the library in February, inspired in part by Pilot Books, a bookstore in Mr. Nelson’s hometown, Seattle, that carried volumes by independent publishers, and which closed in 2011…Mellow Pages also specializes in those more arcane titles. Without the advertising budgets of major houses, the smaller presses have more difficulty finding readers, Mr. Nelson said, and the idea behind the library was to form a community of people who could share books that were not easy to find elsewhere.”
And now they host meta-publicity stunts by library-loving superstar rappers, too.
We hope Kanye does actually drop into Mellow Pages at some point. He should pick up a copy of our own Lars Iyer‘s Dogma — it’s recommended reading for a guy who has said, “I understand culture. I am the nucleus.”
Update: As it turns out, Kanye probably won’t be coming by Mellow Pages for the books — he just told W, “God’s little practical joke on me—as an intellect who doesn’t like to read a lot—is like, I’ll say some superphilosophical shit, but I’ll say it the wrong way,”
Ariel Bogle is a former publicist at Melville House.