Can you tell me a bit about your book "Why Do Birds"?
It takes place in New York City in 1982. Its central character is a once-popular singer trying to reverse the downward trajectory of her life. All of its main characters have pop music flowing through their veins, and all of them are trying to navigate a challenging time in their lives. I've always been drawn to stories about underdogs, and each of them qualifies, in her or his own particular way.
If they were creating a Mount Rushmore of Musicians who would your picks be and why?
Let's narrow that down to a Mount Rushmore of singers (as if even that were possible). My first group would be, in no particular order, Dusty Springfield, Elvis Presley, Marvin Gaye, Karen Carpenter, and Gladys Knight.
Hmm, I can think of a few singers I'd put up there before some of those picks. Mount Rushmore was composed of groundbreaking presidents, and all of those singers are tremendously good, of course, but some of them have lots of similarly-talented peers that did basically the same kinds of things they did. Of course it's all a matter of personal taste.
(You'll note that I haven't used any names here... but Karen is one of the ones I would put up there, she truly was a groundbreaker in more ways than one.)