James Ellroy: ‘Perfidia’ Online


Google Books is offering a extensive preview of James Ellroy’s “Perfidia,” for those who may be curious about it.  Amazon is also offering a preview.

I have to say I’m not reassured by the first lines, ostensibly a radio broadcast by Gerald L.K. Smith, who died in 1976 at Glendale Community Hospital:

As is known by everyone who ever listened to Wolfman Jack, the Mexican radio stations had call signs beginning with X as in XERF, which carried Wolfman Jack, and XERA, which carried Dr. J.R. Brinkley of “goat gland” fame.

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in 1941, Books and Authors and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to James Ellroy: ‘Perfidia’ Online

  1. dlhartzog says:

    As a longtime James Ellroy fan, after having read Clandestine in the early eighties, I read Perfidia, but was very disappointed, found it static, repetitive, it lacked the forcefulness and inventiveness of of his previous epics. Hopefully, later volumes will be better.


  2. Earl Boebert says:

    Re: XERF. The Mexican stations were notorious for running at huge power levels. A buddy of mine grew up in Brownsville, TX, and as a kid they lit their treehouse with a flashlight bulb and six feet of wire. Good old XERF pumped enough RF to do the rest.


    • lmharnisch says:

      Your story sounds somewhat suspect, but yes those clear-channel Mexican border stations were powerful. Then again, back in the heyday of AM radio, KOMA-AM, a clear-channel station in Oklahoma City, carried over many states and could be picked up in Arizona with nothing more than a car radio.


  3. Earl Boebert says:

    Checking up, it was more likely XERA. US clear channel stations ran 50Kw; I used to listen to “America’s Popular Music” on KFI in the SF Bay area regularly. XERA ran 500kw in the 30’s and claimed 1Mw. That’s a *lot* of power.


  4. John Campbell says:

    I distinctly remember listening to the Wolfman while living in SoCal back in ’63-’64 on XERB. It was out of Baja Calif somewhere.


  5. Larry Miller says:

    Wolfman Jack was on XERB.


Leave a Reply. Note: Your IP is logged with your comment so a fake name and email address are useless.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s