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Answering Joyce Carol Oates with a Song

Singer-songwriter and novelist Ben Arthur has written an album of "answer songs," and one of them is based on “Forked River Roadside Shrine, South Jersey,” a Joyce Carol Oates story that appeared in our most recent fiction issue. Give it a listen.

Singer-songwriter and novelist Ben Arthur's career has focused on the hazy intersection between literature and music. His upcoming album, Call and Response, is a collection of "answer songs," each responding to the work of other writers, including songs like the Rolling Stones’ “Sympathy for the Devil” and Bruce Springsteen's "Atlantic City." One of the standout tracks on Call and Response is an answer to “Forked River Roadside Shrine, South Jersey,” a Joyce Carol Oates story that appeared in our most recent fiction issue, which you can still read on the iPad edtion of VICE magazine. It's a darkly beautiful story about a dead boy watching his friends and family mourn at the roadside shrine he haunts—perfect fodder for a haunting folk song. Listen to it below:

Ben Arthur’s If You Look for My Heart is available as an albuma book, and an integrated eBook. His upcoming album, Call and Response, will be out this summer. You can see more of his work at BenArthur.com and SongCraftPresents.com.