[Jandek] Jandek vs. Sterling Smith (In defense of Lars)

Lauren Ciechanowski lauren.ciechanowski at gmail.com
Fri Sep 5 09:44:52 PDT 2008

The "treating him with kid gloves"-accusers are just as tiring as his most
protective fans.

To me, referring to him as 'Jandek' as opposed to 'SS' is purely out of
respect and accuracy.  Nobody calls Carrot Top 'Scott Thompson' except to
berate him (not that they can't while employing the CT moniker, of course)
or as background information, because intolerable comedy isn't Scott
Thompson's shtick - Carrot Top is.  And Carrot Top's shtick is intolerable

Similarly, music isn't SS's shtick - Jandek is.  And Jandek's shtick is
music.  If I want financial or gardening advice I'll go to SS, if I want
music I'll go to Jandek.  Hell, if I want to talk about Jandek I'll write to
Sterling Smith, but I think he's made it clear over the past 30 years how he
wants the musician presented.  That's not reading into, that's just paying

Calling him by his name seems to be a worn-out exercise of in-group
name-dropping.  If we know who he is and it supposedly doesn't matter, then
why do we need to refer to him by his name?


On 9/5/08, Nate Wilson <visioninapark at hotmail.com> wrote:
> First off, I will start by saying that Lars is one of the most passionate
> writers I have come across and his love for Jandek, both the music and story
> are often unparalleled.
> With that being said.
> Have you noticed that Jandek fans get upset when he is refered to by his
> real name.
> You would never see that in fans of Roseanne Barr or Charlize Theron.... It
> is just the man's last name
> The fact that anyone would find it disturbing that it is referenced makes
> me wonder
> Why are people so bothered?  Why do people put Jandek or the music of
> Jandek on a special pedestal or care for him with kid gloves.  He would be
> the first to say he is normal, not special, nothing to read into.... and yet
> we all have been guilty of this at one time or another...even me.
> I have been in contact with the man for years now... and I know from
> correspondance that he is not a fan of the hooplah around him.... The
> mystery that has been perpetuated by fans and non-fans alike.
> You ever notice that the majority of articles written about Jandek or
> Corwood revolve around the mystery... the recluse.... the enigma.... and
> very few touch on the BEAUTY of the music...
> As The Rep has said before "There is nothing to get"
> There is a big difference between respecting Corwoods wishes of privacy and
> stating a fact (his birth name for instance)... that has been common
> knowledge since the early 80's.  If you purchased vinyl from Corwood back in
> the day you would see his signature on the cashed check.  If you went to the
> Library of Congresses website you would see the claimant for all Jandek cds
> as Sterling R Smith and for God's sake there is a CORWOOD APPROVED movie,
> and almost everyone has heard the Trubee interview.... So it is no big
> secret what his name is.
> .... as a side note..... I had asked him a long time ago if he was Mormon
> and his simple response was a one word letter back to me which read
> "NONE"
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