I have missed Marc Smirnoff. I won't lie about it.
Sure, he's flawed, somewhat hedonistic and scattered. He grates on people. His language sometimes feels like the rough side of a cat's tongue. Sometimes he's right, sometimes he's wrong. Who am I to judge?
No matter what you think of Mr. Smirnoff — and everyone has an opinion from what I can tell — you have to admit he's a talented man who nursed along a small, but prestigious, literary magazine for about 20 years during a time when the economy has shaken most magazines and newspapers to their fundamental cores.
That, honestly, deserves respect.
And now he's back — at least for a little while.
Smirnoff, who was founder and editor of the Oxford American until he was fired in July, takes some slaps at the Oxford American and its own music release, but he also talks passionately about Southern literature and music. He's revised his website and included the "Funky Old School" Louisiana Mix, which he calls an "experiment."
In his commentary on his new collection, Smirnoff wrote: "The aim of the Southern Music presentations I led (at OA) — and the aim of my new online Louisiana Music experiment — is to suggest that researching/probing/digging into both a musical genre and a state’s musical legacy causes divine happiness."
That one sentence is why I am posting a link to his website. I want to hear his collection because I am also a seeker of "divine happiness," although it still eludes me.