Friday, March 17

Comix strip of Jonathan in Belgrade

Aleksandar Zograf is a comics drawer, a journalist as well as a die hard Jonathan fan.
In 2005, while Jonathan toured Serbia, Aleksandar met him in Belgrade and designed a Jonathan comix in Italian.

When Aleks was a kid, a friend of his had a parrot which one day while hearing "Kwa Ti Feng" from "Rock'n roll with the Modern lovers" became very excited and reproduced the song. In 2002, Aleks met Jonathan in San Francisco and told him about the parrot. Jonathan was not surprised and said that animals understood music. In 2005, Jonathan toured Serbia for the very first time coming from Turkey.
He sang in front of an enormous audience which did not want him to leave when his gig was over. The microphones had been switched off but Jonathan had to come back again and again and sang accapella in front of the extactic audience. He gave to Aleks a drawing he had done of the street of his hotel in Istanbul. He had been appalled to see people living nearby in slums.

In Belgrade, Jonathan and Aleks discussed... Jonathan was explaining his hate for cellular phones and how he was tryin' to get rid of belongings.
"when I am looking at the Danube river, at the birds an all the surroundings, the ringing of a phone would transport me elsewhere and destroy what I had here.. if someone is looking for me, why does'nt he just come to my house and knock the door ?
Records, CD's I don't even have my own ones .I am trying to get rid of all that is not necessary, no belongings." And Aleks replies to him that he is just the opposite and that it is easy doing for Jonathan, what can matter when you have seen the Velvet Underground live.
J : " when I was 10 years old, my parents took my brother and I to New York, that was awesome !
First going to Boston which was already a large city , then New York even larger with taxis at every corner, Later I wanted to fly from Boston to New York because there was the Velvet Underground there and I wanted again the lights in the night."
Then Jonathan draws from memory a picture of the Boston Tea Party, a former synagog turned into a venue, where the Velvets used to play a lot as they had a larger following in Boston than in NYC.
Jonathan attended all these concerts with devotion and he points out to Aleks on the drawing "there is the pizzeria where we used to go for dinner each time". Final drawing is inside the BTP, the attendance.. " in those times you would not describe those shows as concerts, people were coming mainly to dance. So biker gangs, university teachers, students, famous people (Andy Warhol was often there), they all came every month to dance to the music of the Velvet Underground.