Amanda Palmer is back with another “thing” for 2018, this time a video in honor of Judy Blume, the author of such beloved young adult fiction books as Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, Superfudge and of course, Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret. While these novels are enjoyable for all readers, they were specifically influential for decades of young women – for many girls in the 70s, 80s, 90s and decades beyond, her words shepherded them through the difficult transition into young adulthood. According to the American Library Association, Blume is one of the most challenged authors of the 21st century due to her frank and honest portrayal of real teenage issues like masturbation, menstruation and birth control.
Today is her 80th birthday and amid all of celebration of her incredible career, Palmer has paid her own respects with a new song, video and essay titled “Why Judy Blume Matters,” published on Huffington Post. The video was directed by Jason Webley (his debut as a director) and is described as Palmer as one of the most emotional videos she’s ever made. The video was funded by the donations of 10,000 patrons on Palmer’s Patreon account.
The seven minute video begins with Palmer playing piano alone in a room before transitioning to shots of children, adolescents and adults reading some of Blume’s most beloved books. In many of the scenes, the subjects are overwhelmed by emotion from the moving passages that Blume has penned in her iconic tales. Meanwhile, Palmer describes the influence that Blume had on her as a young person.
“Judy Blume” artwork:
In other news, Palmer reveals she is working on material for a new album. She describes it as a “huge new solo piano record” and says it will be out in 2019.
Photo Credit: Raymond Flotat