Τρίτη, 20 Ιουνίου 2006

Come to us, Jonboy! (the introduction)



Yep, Jonboy is coming to us. He’s coming to our web-scene, www.diamonds.explode.to, via his answers to our questions. The so-called Renaissance Man is probably widely known for his involvement with the Mekons, whom he co-created back in 1976, in Leeds University, UK. Today, Jon is based miles away from Leeds, but we’ll get to that shortly, OK? Let’s just add that, besides the politically-charged Mekons, another group of call-them-rockNroll-activists, the recently reformed Gang of Four, were also born in the same Leeds University.
It is time that I quote ‘the usual suspect’ (www.allmusic.com, that is to say). “After 25 years together, this band, with an ever-shifting lineup (only Jon Langford and Tom Greenhalgh remain from the original lineup), has produced some of the best rock & roll on the planet; be it amateurish rock-noise, cool synth-driven pop, guitar rave-ups, or postmodern country & western, the Mekons have done it all and done it with style, grace, and a ribald sense of humor.”, in an exact re-production of John Dougan’s words.

‘Never Been in a Riot’, a satirical take on the well-known Clash-song ‘White Riot’ is the Mekons’ fist single. Langford (who started out as the drummer, but later switched to the guitar) founded his first side project to the Mekons circa 1982, with the Three Johns. Three Johns (Langford, John Hyatt, Philip ‘John’ Brennan, aided by a drum machine) specialized in abrasive, politically-fueled, danceable rock. The Three Johns will continue until the early ’90s. It is then when Langford relocates to Chicago. For the eyes of a beautiful Greek American lady…
In Chicago, our Jonboy pieced together the underground country-punk group the Waco Brothers. Langford having become friends with
Bloodshot Records co-founder Rob Miller
, the Wacos recorded their debut album for the label, in the year 1995. Bloodshot and the Wacos will remain faithful to each other until now. The excellent ‘Freedom and Weep’ (2006) is a record that deserves to be on the company’s acclaimed catalogue. Also are active the Waco Brothers’ brothers: The Pine Valley Cosmonauts, a moniker for excursions into performing and honoring music written by others, kinda collective of musicians. Over the years, Jonboy has enjoyed the cooperation of many musicians, guesting on numerous recordings, including sessions with Dutch punk pioneers The Ex, plus Austin, Texas local legend Alexandro Escovedo. This unstoppable man has also found enough time to record joint albums with Sally Timms and Richard Buckner
.
It feels as a good time to interview Langford, because –apart from the Waco’s ‘Freedom and Weep’- he has a new solo album out (on the historical
Roir Records). It’s called ‘Gold Brick’. As if those were not enough, ‘Nashville Radio: Art, Words, and Music’, a book + cd collection of his artwork and writings plus his performing 18 of the printed songs appears in 2006.

So, Langford is as extremely busy as he’s always been, producing records, designing record covers, taking care of his own paintings and sketches, organizing his regular anti-death penalty public actions, and being one of the hosts of a weekly radio show, called ‘The Eclectic Company’, that airs on WXRT 93.1 FM in Chicago. May his creativity never stops!
It’s such an honor that Jon Langford wrote us his answers to our blog’s questions (in the next post). Check them out for yourselves. They’re honest statements of an honest man.

John Simandiras

2 σχόλια:

mystery falls down είπε...

Αν είχα τη δυνατότητα να κυκλοφορήσω δικό μου μουσικό έντυπο ο μόνος άνθρωπος που θα επιθυμούσα οπώσδηποτε να προσλάβω θα ήσασταν εσείς (παρ' όλο που γνωρίζω ότι ο μισθός σας αγγίζει δυσθεώρητα ύψη). Δεν είναι καθόλου ευκολο να ετοιμάζεις ερωτήσεις για συνεντεύξεις. Εκτός και αν είσαι ο Λάλας (Τα κακά παιδιά πάνε Goallywood)!Το έχω παραδεχτεί και στο παρελθόν και θα το διαπράξω και τώρα. Τα καταφέρνετε περίφημα. Λίγοι επαγγελματίες μουσικογραφιάδες διαθέτουν το χάρισμα να τραβάν το ενδιαφέρον των αναγνωστών. Μέσα σ' αυτούς είστε και εσείς. Απορώ πως το Pitchfork ή έστω το Uncut δεν έχει απαγάγει ένα χρυσοχόο αυθεντικών κειμένων διαμαντιών!

Φένια είπε...

Μη δίνεις ιδέες και μας τον πάρουνε βρε Mystery!