Opening lines of books are notorious to get right. A feat more difficult, often compared to capturing lightning in a bottle, is the writing of hit songs. The Bookshop Band fuses the two and chamber music to create a sublime new genre of what one could call "Literary Pop".
Musicians Beth Porter and Ben Please make up the band and write songs inspired by literature. The duo have been touring and performing in the UK over the last two years and have spent the last year recording 10 albums, all of which will be released in 2016-17.
Once Upon A Time is culled entirely from famous opening lines. There's the famous "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times" from Charles Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities, seguing into the classic opening line "light of my life, fire of my loins" from Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita. It's not a random recitation of lines. They come together beautifully to tell the story of a man who lived high up above the North Pole and his children, all of whom, except one, grew up.
Curioser and Curioser is another song that makes up their repertoire and is inspired by Lewis Carol's Alice in Wonderland. "The queen of hearts is furious, this life is but a dream..."
And where there is music and literature, the bard cannot be too far behind. The Crowning is inspired by speeches Richard the Second gives in the famous play by William Shakespeare.