[Jandek] Clarifying Gavin (but not much)

Danen D. Jobe djobe at uark.edu
Fri Apr 6 21:34:40 PDT 2007

> A Chankin wrote that
> > Recently, there has been interesting comment on the Jandek concerts.
> in response (in part) to Danen's comments about the Pitchfork Richmond
> review. I usually agree with most everything Danen posts on the list,
> in part because he's a good writer and an astute thinker, analyst and
> critic, and in part because one can't help but think him to be 'in the
> know' because of his contact with Corwood relating to 'Niagra Blues'

Thanks for the kind words, Gavin (and I sometimes just post what I think - I've actually quite enjoyed the responses to my rant, which I somewhat regretted writing after it was posted). I DO want to note that when I'm pondering Corwood on the list I'm simply doing that - my contact has been in relation, principally, to things that matter to the book, readings, etc. This may give me more insight than I give it credit, but I still turn to the music and shows to understand the creation (the creator, in the end, being a person like anybody who happens to love playing music). I didn't get to see Richmond, so I was going off what I'd read (and I read three good accounts and talked to one person who went). But really, I'm not 'in the know' on any of this stuff anymore than anyone. It's just my opinions. I really want to make that clear (and use more adverbs in the process than I normally allow myself). Obviously, I'm not the most objective person in the world on Jandek, but my resp
onse may more have been at a lot of critics who won't let themselves grow past his sea change of the last few years and demand that he return to the dark cellar to make more hidden music. Turns out, he's still doing that - 'The Ruins of Adventure' is probably more challenging than any show I've been to, but then again the "hermit" Jandek most critics seem to want to embrace has been gone at least since the last crazy warbling on "Worthless Recluse." The albums after that (the "clean" ones) and the live shows are the work of a new phase. Since few really LISTENED to the old stuff anyhow it can be jarring, I suppose, to waltz into a show knowing only, say, "Ready for the House." On the other hand, I've met people at every show who've been enchanted by the music having never heard a note of Jandek before. And I've watched as either a handful or a good chunk of the audience has "stepped out." Some come back - some don't. It never seems to affect what's on stage at that time, and 
that brings me back to the idea that we're witnessing a studio process where an audience is allowed. 

I think you'd get a kick out of a show, Spencer. How many years of these do we have? My hope is for many, but I'd say see one somewhere as soon as you can. And good point Gavin (and others) that I was perhaps too brash on the writer of the article (though I DID say that it was well-written -far better than the dross that passes for reviews around there). I've been engulfed in this catalog on this project for nearly two years now - and been a listener for fourteen! Perhaps I expect too much, or maybe I'd just like to see Corwood get some recognition from a good source before th inevitable praise that will follow in the decades to come. I'd wager on that. 

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