[Jandek] RE: Jandek Fan Ethnography

Matt Love matt.mattlove1 at gmail.com
Fri Apr 28 16:25:54 PDT 2006

Are you male or female?

How old are you?

What part of the world do you come from?
Olympia, WA

How did you get into Jandek? What is your 'story'?
When I was doing an internship at OP magazine in 1982, a copies of
Chair Beside A Window came in for review.  I took a copy home and
listened to it. I found it just about unlistenable, except Nancy
Sings, which I found enchanting and fascinating. I occasionally played
Jandek tracks on my radio show at KAOS (Evergreen State College) but I
usually used it in collages with Harry Partch, Half Japanese, Steve
Reich, Metal Machine Music, etc.

I had very little information about Jandek or contact with his music
for 23 years. Then I crossed paths with Steve Peters who I knew from
the KAOS, when he came to work for the Jack Straw Foundation where I
was volunteering. He told me about the Jandek documentary, and that
Calvin Johnson (who broke a guitar of mine once) was interviewed in
it.  I googled it, and found out that Jandek was going to start doing
live performances. I was incredulous. I joined the list, and started
following links to recordings of Jandek provided by list members. I
found I had a narrow view of his music, and I found many things I

Q: How do you define being a Jandek fan?

A: A Jandek fan would be somebody who has several of his albums, plays
them for friends, and spends a good deal of time listening to the
music and looking at the album covers, trying to pull meaning out of

Q: Do you consider yourself a Jandek fan?

A: I do not consider myself a fan.

Q: Why did you join the mailing list? How often do you post? Do you
receive posts in digest format?

A: I joined the mailing list to learn about the live shows, and to
observe the antics of people who make trekkies seem like  Chamber of
Commerce types. I post perhaps once every 2 months.  I receive posts

Q: What do your friends and family think about Jandek?

A: They pretty much violently reject Jandek.  Some are amused; some
actually get angry.  One shares my love for "Nancy Sings"

Q: What do they think about you listening to Jandek?

A: They are not concerned.  They are not aware that I have begun to
like him, and collect mp3s when I can find them.

Q: To what extent does the 'myth of Jandek' – the mystery  surrounding
his identity – appeal to you?

A: A tremendous amount. I am also impressed that he has suddenly
displayed a high public profile, but people know little or nothing
more about him.

Q: Have you ever tried to contact Corwood Industries or Sterling Smith
for reasons other than placing an order? What happened?

A: No.

Q: What is your perception of other Jandek fans?

A: They are an interesting bunch.  Generally very bright. Many have
the same sad self-importance of comic book fans, or other types of
nerds.  I enjoy watching them get angry when one of their ranks pranks
them, which seems to be very easy to do.

Q: Why do you like Jandek?

A: I admire his persistence.  I am very impressed that he has carved
his own niche that is unlike any other that I know of.

Q: How often do you listen to Jandek?

A: I tend to do it in waves; a lot for a few days, nothing for weeks at a time.

Q: What other music do you listen to?

A: Thanks to Last.fm (http://www.last.fm/) I can tell you exactly what
I've been listening to, and in what order...

Lulina, Lulina e os Causadores, Royale, OPM, Joan Osborne, King Wasiu
Ayinde, Jandek, Melanie, lulina com headphone L, Roman Holiday, Nina,
The Incredible Moses Leroy, Imago, Curumin, Nina (ft. Christian
Bautista), New Seekers, The Speaks feat. Barbie Almalbis, Nikkie Gil,
Dictionaraoke, Mitch & Mickey, Scott Fitzgerald & Yvonne Keeley,
Kamikazee, MYMP, Janet Greene, Yes, Cat Power, Telex, Theme Songs, Rx,
Mike Anthony, Sponge Cola, Orange and Lemons, Wasiu Ayinde, Izaak
Sibley, Jello Biafra and Mojo Nixon, Jah Wobble, The Velvet
Underground, Randy Crawford, Bright Eyes, Big Country, Martin Denny,
Plastic Bertrand, War, Freelance Hellraiser, Leo Kottke, Leon Russell,
Dave Edmunds, Marc Collin, New Cool Collective, Israel TV

Q: Is there anything I have not asked that you would like to tell me?

A: Impeach Bush.

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