[Jandek] A few more observation on Glasgow Monday

Brian Krakow krakow81 at gmail.com
Thu May 26 13:51:49 PDT 2005

I may come up with something longer and more detailed later to add to
the mix, but for now a few observations:

1. We were *not* asked to be silent and to refrain from clapping
during Jandek's performance.

As mentioned earlier, the organiser came on stage beforehand and told
us that the performance would be perhaps very different from what we
were expecting, that it would be a very long meditative peace lasting
90 minutes and that we would be best sitting down on the floor or the
chairs round the side of the hall, as we wouldn't want to be shuffling
about (I agree that a lot more seats should have been provided,
sitting on the floor took me back to assemblies at primary school).
There were signs up both outside and inside the hall where the concert
took place, saying words to the effect that 'If you have to leave
during the performance then please do so as quietly as possible'.
However, there was no mention at all that we should not clap and
should remain silent throughout the set. This was something that just
For me it was primarily out of uncertainty. When the first 'song' was
drawing to a close I began to wonder whether we would clap or not. I
wasn't sure what the correct thing to do was, so I just waited to see
what anyone else did. In particular I was sitting close to the
organiser and so watched him. When he didn't react during the pause I
assumed that this was the right thing to do, and it seemed everyone
else did as well. I wonder if we were in shock that this was Jandek
performing right here in front of us. A collective state of fear and
awe, which held us silent till the end.
Once we had been silent during the first pause it was only natural to
continue this throughout the set. For me it lent a great tension to
the silent passages between the playing, where I would sit as still as
possible, trying to be totally silent, almost not even breathing. This
tension was released each time when Jandek started playing again.
Being silent throughout the full 90 minutes meant also that when the
end finally came the reaction was even more pronounced. People jumped
up to applaud and there was lots of shouts and whooping (which
personally I found a bit out of place; after the quiet and
introspection of what we had just been a part of it seemed wrong for
people to stand there whooping at Jandek et al. A vigorous clapping
seemed much more fitting to me).

2. As mentioned there was only one photographer, the 'official' one, I
think from the CCA perhaps. A young woman. Surprisingly she didn't
seem to be using that fancy a camera, although digital it wasn't the
usual SLR of the professional, but instead some kind of point and
shoot, though of what calibre I cannot say. She didn't take massive
numbers of photos. She took photos during not only Jandek's set but
also Taurpis Tula, who followed, and Keiji Haino who was on third,
though I didn't notice her during My Cat Is An Alien, who didn't come
on till well gone midnight (and didn't finish till 1am). This suggests
that she was not exclusively linked with Jandek, but more a part of
those organising the event, or the venue, the CCA.

3. Similarly, the recording which took place, in the form of very
professional looking camera equipment, with several operators, which
was stationed at the rear of the hall, occurred during all of the
first three sets (again they left after Keiji Haino), so was not an
exclusively Jandekian thing.

There's some more snippets to help flesh out the picture of the night.

P.S. I too think Jandek looks painfully thin, especially in the photos
from Gateshead.



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