A TributeAmong the many things we didn't think we'd see in our lifetime, the list has to include a democratic South Africa, R. Kelly making videos that are even weirder than his legal problems, Nick and Jessica breaking up and Jandek actually doing a live show. After crafting a mysterious persona for over 25 years, having no contact with the entertainment world other than his myriad of releases (which include strange pictures and no credits), the J man decided that it was time to interact with his legion of fans, planning dates in the Glasgow (his first ever show in October 2004, unannounced), London, Austin, New Orleans (cancelled because of Katrina) and New York: did we ever think we'd actually be talking about a 'Jandek tour'??? All of this plus a recent documentary (Jandek on Corwood), which of course doesn't feature the subject himself and a recent fall tour of Europe.
To celebrate these momentous occasions, we have a lengthy overview of his entire recording career, reviews of the New York and Austin shows and an interview with intrepid guitarist Loren Mazzacane Connors, who accompanied J for one of his NYC shows.
Lest you think that the veil's been parted on this underground phenom, think again. When we spoke to other musicians who worked with him, they were fairly evasive. Richard Youngs (who accompanied him at the Glasgow gig) had only this to say last month: " I'm very proud of the music that we have made and it was an honour to be asked by Corwood Industries to play with Jandek. In fact, there was another Jandek gig here in Glasgow a week ago where I played bass. As before, it was incredibly exciting and I believe the music speaks for itself... Regarding the Jandek questions: I'm not going to go into the details of what happened - I really do believe the music speaks for itself." Drummer Chris Corsano (who played at all three NYC gigs) was also weary of saying too much, out of respect to the artist, obviously realizing that even though he has made some outreach to his fans, Jandek still wants to keep some of his persona and mystique cloudy. Corsano did confirm one thing we were wondering about: "there was indeed a pre-show rehearsal for both gigs."
Special thanks to Jandek expert/curator Seth Tisue (who also thought that the NYC review should be called "Jandek: The Small-Minded Weigh In").
Album/CD reviews of all Jandek product Jandek live in Austin review Jandek live in NYC review Interview with Loren Connors about Jandek
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