13 January 2010

Rest In Peace Jay Reatard

I fucked up pretty bad the last time this blog had to deal with death. (Writer's Note: Seriously, it was atrocious. A proper Michael Jackson send-off looks like this.) I just got home from work not too long ago so this is still setting in, but Jay Reatard died this morning. Details are pretty scarce at this point, and the only thing that looks certain is that they found him dead in bed at about 3:30 this morning. Needless to say, this is a blower. 
Last summer, Gary and I were in Chicago for Pitchfork and we had planned on seeing Jay but we drank two cases of Old Style the night before which led to our oversleeping. This past summer when word came out that Jay was coming to Baltimore, I bought tickets the morning they went on sale which turned out to be kind of laughable months later when we got to the Ottobar and presented our fresh-from-the-printer tickets only to walk inside and while it was packed, I couldn't shake the feeling that this was the kind of show where you just kind of roll up and buy your ticket at the door like you are in the know and if tickets are sold then that's ok too because when you're cool you don't care. That show was really kick-ass, by the way.
I don't want to belabor the point because I feel like in doing so I would be missing the point. Jay did a lot of things really well, and now he's gone and it bums me out just like I imagine it bums lots of other people. I feel awful for his family and people who actually knew him. I started listening to Jay because I liked the Black Lips, but wanted something a little more intense. I really really dug what I heard, and to promote enthusiasm I always put him in my top 8 on Myspace. (Writer's Note: Myspace reference shows that clearly I was listening to this shit years ago.) I liked the attitude that I heard on the records, and I always enjoyed logging on to the internets and reading about how Jay spouted off about this, that, or the other. I watched that 20 minute documentary on him, and besides agreeing that clapping was utterly unnecessary at shows, I was kind of enamored listening to this dude talk. When he signed with Matador, I felt like I hit the fucking lotto. The home to my most favorite band signing one of my most favorite current artists. I realize that's selfish, but when I like bands I really like them. 
This is a tragedy, and a gigantic loss.

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