I happened on Lurie’s music in college when I heard his soundtrack work in Jarmusch films. Maybe that’s backwards since Lounge Lizards is most of the time the first band that people mention when you say John Lurie. But those stark string quartets, and Moondog-esque urban-americana on Stranger Than Paradise, African Swim/Manny & Lo (my favorite), Down By Law, and the Fishing with John series stand as some of my favorite music.
So this week’s New Yorker magazine article was full of welcomed information on Lurie and his absence from new music. Titled Sleeping With Weapons; subtitled: Why John Lurie Disappeared. Link to article (need user/pass to read in full).
Besides a few sections relating to how he started the Lounge Lizards, his roots of playing in the East Village, and such, most of the article focuses on his health conditions and a rift between him and a one-time friend that has sent Lurie away from New York for a long time. It’s a wild story, full of hilarious quotes, sad and startling details, and two sides of a story of which you never know who is bending the facts more.
Luckily, Lurie has been painting recently. But the absence of his music from today’s scene–something he seems less interested in revisiting–is a serious loss in my opinion. Here’s hoping he can find that writer’s streak in him again. It’s most assuredly still there.
Oh, and here’s a Justin Bieber song slowed down 800%.