This week instead of the usual attempts to be funny that accompany my playlists, I thought I’d tell you a bit about Jack Rose.
Jack was a guitarist from Virginia who made 9 albums of solo acoustic guitar tunes for various small labels betwen 2002 and 2009. The thing most often said about his work is that he sounds a lot like John Fahey , which is a bit like someone coming up to you after football and telling you that you remind them of Pele.
Jack’s was an unflustered, technically impressive but not flashy style which could switch effortlessly from heart lifting sunny picking to uneasy sounding drones and ragas, and then to spine tingling country blues, sometimes all with in the same song.
His version of Blind Willie Johnson’s “Dark is the Night , Cold is the Ground” shows both his love for his influences and his uncanny ability to transcend them to make something scintillating, and is currently making this sentimenal old sod stupidly misty eyed as it plays in the background while I’m writing this.
He died last Saturday of a heart attack at the ridiculously young age of 38 and this week’s programme was dedicated to him, his friends and family.
His death makes me feel that curious sense of loss that you get when someone you don’t know but whose work you loved dies ,because you know that you won’t get that fleeting surge of joy that comes from a new record anymore. Surges of joy, however fleeting, are hard to come by.
If you’ve never heard him, and you see any of his records about, pick one up. You won’t be disappointed.
Jack Rose – “A Dusty Grass” (LP -”The Black Dirt Sessons”) (Three Lobed Recordings)
Tha Playah – “Why So Serious?” (LP-”Walking The Line”) (Neophyte)
The Fall – “Hot Cake Pt.2″ (CD single “Slippy Floor”) (Action)
Redlight – “Kid Soldier” (EP- “Lobster Boy”) (White Label)
Muletrain – “Here’s Anxiety” (LP-”Crashbeat”) (Beat Generation)
Frankie Laine – “Mule Train” (3CD Set – “The Frankie Laine Collection”) (Sony Budget)
Symfoniorkestern – “Tand Eld Pa Dig Sjalv” (download EP – “Tand Eld Pa Dig Sjalv”) (Available from Swedesplease.net)
Soom T – “Dirty Money” (12″) (Jahtari)
Thomas Fehlman – “I Want to be a Fishy” (LP- “One To Three”) (R&S)
U.S. Girls – “Blue Eyes on the Blvd.”
Talk Normal -”Warrior”
Tickley Feather – “For Rent” (all from v/a LP “My Estrogeneration”) (Not Not Fun)
Mystikal Lion – “Lion Style” (Can’t find a proper copy of this anywhere so nick it from dancehall-club.blogspot.com)
The Keys – “Somewhere” (EP- “Le Mans”) (See Monkey Do Monkey)
Comanechi – “Rabbit Love” (LP-”Crime of Love”) (Merok)
DJ Hidden – “Solid Tactics” (split 12″ with Sygo) (Theoretic)
Jack Rose- “Fishtown Flower” (LP- “Dr. Ragtime and His Pals”) (Tequila Sunrise)