[Jandek] Chicago - "Is this on?"

Lauren Ciechanowski ciechano at stolaf.edu
Thu Sep 21 16:35:33 PDT 2006

Correct - AMAZING SHOW!!! And I thought my day couldn't be topped after a
pigeon crapped on my head at Randolph and Wabash!

The lyrics were NOTHING as profound as The Cell or, from what I hear,
Toronto. But c'mon - it's the Empty Bottle! The man could not have played
any more appropriately for the occassion. John and Josh were excellent
support/collaboration for the man. The bass lines were FLOORING the whole
evening. I can't wait for the DVD - I'm eager to see if Josh (bassist)
actually has eyeballs under all that hair; on the other hand, John seemed
to drum more with his eyeballs than his hands. Thought they'd pop out a
few times.

I never thought I'd be at a Jandek concert, not to mention one that was
quite so rocking. Who knew the man was a hip-swiveler? The beat was
toe-tapping/head-bobbing fun, and the lyrics were downright badass
sex/drugs/rock 'n roll. I wouldn't have it any other way.

I had a GREAT time in Chicago, and it was great to meet those of you that
I did. Thanks, everyone!


> Don't have much time to write at the moment, but DEAR LORD.
> I was real worried at first - noisy bar, smoky environment, etc. There was
> no stand for his lyrics either, which he had to request, and then the mic
> wasn't working ("is this on" became his sole "on stage speech" to this
> point. Funny).
> The band were TREMENDOUS. This rocked harder than anything I'd ever seen
> him do, with a rolling bass hitting off John McEntire's often double-timed
> drums. The lyrics were about prison, God, and a topless girl in a red
> skirt. The singing was very controlled - he took a bit of what he was
> doing in Toronto and combined it with "the howl." I took a friend who'd
> never heard of Jandek until a few days earlier (he went to see my reading
> and decided to take in the concert). After the show he said, "I can't
> imagine the records could equal that." Had to explain that the records
> were a whole other deal. But really, the man is setting the bar right now.
> Both of these shows, I felt, put a new high water mark. Where he goes from
> here will be very exciting.
> gotta go,
> Danen
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