The first book Tin House ever published, Low Down: Junk, Jazz, and Other Fairy Tales From Childhood by A.J. Albany, is being reissued nearly ten years after its release in anticipation of the premiere of the book’s film adaptation at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2014.
Low Down is a memoir of the author’s famous father, troubled jazz pianist Joe Albany, and her life with him when she was six years old and they lived in the seedy underbelly of Hollywood in the 1960s. In addition to John Hawkes in the leading role, the cast of the film includes Glenn Close, Elle Fanning, and Peter Dinklage.
“The book was published in 2003, back when we partnered with Bloomsbury,” says Nanci McClosky, director of rights and publicity for Tin House in Portland, Oregon. “Low Down actually began as an essay in Tin House Magazine, and it got a ton of attention from the likes of Greil Marcus and Robert Polito.” The book eventually went out of print, and Tin House, now distributed by Publishers Group West, got the rights back. Low Down received critical acclaim when it was published.
Albert Berger and Ron Yerxa of Bona Fide Productions optioned Low Down in 2003. They continued to renew the rights every 18 months for ten years, until the film was finally produced. Author A.J. Albany co-wrote the screenplay. “As soon as the film gets picked up for distribution, we’ll release a movie tie-in edition of the book,” McClosky says.