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  • NYS Writers Institute

Watch soul singer/songwriter Bryan 'Buggy Jive' Thomas on WMHT

Music and literature have a long history. We often catch musical references in our books -- E.L. Doctorow’s Ragtime and Nick Hornby's High Fidelity come to mind-- but less frequently do we find literary references in music.


Can you think of a favorite song incorporating literature or authors/poets?

Post a comment below.


That's what makes our very own Bryan “Buggy Jive” Thomas such a treasure. A resident of Bethlehem, just a few miles from the University at Albany, Bryan's lyrics often mine the literature of the past to make sense of the present – from Ralph Ellison to Toni Morrison to T.S. Eliot to Joan Didion.

You can catch Bryan/Buggy in performance on the arts/culture program AHA! A House for Arts at 7:30 tonight (Wednesday, July 28) on WMHT-TV. It’ll also be online at and available after the broadcast at

Here's a snippet posted to Twitter:

You may remember we posted a video conversation with Bryan and Writers Institute Director Paul Grondahl in June 2020. (See below)

He also joined Paul, singer/songwriter Taina Asili, and music journalist Michael Eck at Page Hall for the “Art of Songwriting,” an evening of conversation and musical performance in 2019.

Hear more Bryan Thomas / Buggy Jive at on his website at and his YouTube channels, and Be sure to watch “Stole My Stealing from Eliot,” his homage to T. S. Eliot shot in London, Paris and Albany.



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