Check Out Books From David Byrne's Personal Library

David Byrne

As curator for this year's Meltdown Festival, David Byrne decided to add something personal to the mix.

...when the opportunity appeared for me to make a library out of my own books I jumped at the chance.

Byrne will make his personal 250-book music library available for checkout during the festival, complete with margin notes, papers stuck in the books, and whatever else might be hidden between the pages. And his books won't just be available in a tiny room or within the festival grounds:

You will be able to take my books home, just like in a real library. That’s the best place to read – or in a cafe or on train. You will need to leave a credit card number as a means of discouraging theft. But if some disappear, so be it. However, I am thinking that by showing some trust in the borrowers, that shared respect might do more to discourage theft than the threat of fines.

Byrne has strong feelings about libraries, saying that his suburban library was a "formative place" where he found avant garde composers on vinyl that informed his work and, indeed, his life.

Byrne even took a minute to share his library love and opinions on the role of libraries in the current economy:

...I love a library. The idea of reading books for free didn’t kill the publishing business, on the contrary, it created nations of literate and passionate readers. Shared interests and the impulse to create. One might try to find an analogue in the music business, but this isn’t the place for that ...

How's that for library love, and how's that for a great opportunity? Read a hero's personal library. Whose library would you want to read?

Image of How Music Works
Author: David Byrne
Price: $31.53
Publisher: McSweeney's (2013)
Binding: Paperback, pages
Image of Bicycle Diaries
Author: David Byrne
Price: $13.39
Publisher: Penguin Books (2010)
Binding: Paperback, 320 pages

To leave a comment Login with Facebook or create a free account.