Perfect Sound Forever


photo: Hiroyuki Ito

Interview with Loren Mazzacane Connors
By Jason Gross

PSF: How familiar were you with Jandek's music before you played with him?

A little bit. I had a record of his a long time ago. That was all I had. That was in the '70's. (For the show), we were put together by another guy in Scotland.

PSF: What did you think of his music before you met up with him?

It was kind of up my alley. It was kind of a non-commercial type thing. We're both about the same age. We both started around 1978 doing that stuff. I liked it. It had kind of bluesy feel to it.

PSF: Any idea about why the Scotland people contacted you for the New York show?

I really don't know. I didn't know much about it.

PSF: What were your thoughts when you heard from them about doing the show?

They contacted me and they set up this nice show and I agreed to it. That was about it. I didn't put anything else on to it other than the fact that they wanted to do it.

PSF: You had rehearsals for this before this show?

No. We never rehearsed at all. We just got up there on stage and did it with him.

PSF: So the whole thing was improvised?

Yeah, it was an improv.

PSF: Did you talk to him before the show?

Yeah, we talked and hung out for a little while in the afternoon. And we played maybe for an hour then but it was still improvised. Everything was totally improvised.

PSF: How do you think the show went?

It went good. It went great. We did another thing in Scotland with me and him. It was just he played harmonica and I played guitar behind him. He had a bunch of words he had written down.

PSF: Did you get the impression that he was happy with the shows?

Yeah, he liked it. We really hit it off together. And we're pretty much friends forever now.

PSF: You talked to him before the show. What did you think of him on a personal level?

He's a great guy. I heard about him but I never knew who he was really. But he's a great guy though. I think he's about 55, like me. We could relate to the '60's and stuff like that, you know.

PSF: Did he talk about why he was finally doing live shows now?

I don't know why he never played in public and he started doing it now. I guess he didn't have a lot of confidence or something. It's kind of unusual that he never played a show until he's as old as he is now.

PSF: Do you get the impression that he's going to keep doing this?

Yeah, he plays all over the place now. He's totally into it. Yeah! (laughs)

PSF: Do you think you'll play with him again?

Probably, somewhere... Maybe I'll go down to Texas or he'll come to New York City again.

PSF: When he did the first New York show, he was playing keyboards. Was there any reason for that? He usually plays guitar.

He plays everything so he just wanted to play keyboards that night. He was good.

PSF: What did you think of the lyrics he did that night?

He's a good writer and he recites his stuff. But what he basically is is a poet who recites him music or his poetry live and kind of puts a little bit of background to it in music. So I basically see him as a poet and writer.

PSF: He was using a music stand for the Brooklyn show. Did he also have that for the show you did with him?

Yeah. He's not really an improviser yet. I think I'm making him into one. He always wants to practice and I never practice for anything. But he just did it like an improv thing.

PSF: So, he had words and music laid out for him there?

Yeah, that's right.

PSF: Is there anything else you wanted to say about him?

I don't know. I think people are going to find out pretty soon 'cause he's going to be playing all over the place now. He's got live shows in his blood stream now. So, you'll be hearing a lot from Jandek.

PSF: Do you think he might do interviews some day?

He'll do anything now I think. Before, he didn't want to do anything but now he I think he will.

PSF: That's amazing, considering what a mystery he had been for so long. And people never thought that they'd see him perform.

Yeah, totally. I don't think he knew what the rewards are, playing in front of a live audience.

PSF: You mean just to have the connection?

Yeah, I don't think he realized that when he was younger, up 'til now.

PSF: At the Brooklyn show, he didn't interact with the audience. Maybe it was because this was new to him?

Yeah, he was a little more outgoing in Scotland but that night in Brooklyn was one of his first shows ever so he was kind of new to all of it.

PSF: What do you mean by out going? How was he different in Scotland?

He talked a little tiny bit to the audience.

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