Saturday, May 31
With Tommy by Diamond Geyser (Shepherd's Bush Empire, London)
This was a mini-tour but reports are that Jonathan Richman and Tommy Larkins were in fine form!
Go backstage for full recap→ (page may be slow to load)
Spring 2008 schedule reposted for archives:
FRANCE & ITALY
Fri 02 May Toulouse (Theatre Garonne) with Suzanne Piesker
Sat 03 May Marseille (Le Poste à Galène) with Suzanne Piesker
Mon 5 May Rome (Stazione Birra) with Suzanne Piesker
Tue 6 May Milan (La Casa 139) with Suzanne Piesker
Wed 07 May PARIS (Le Nouveau Casino) with Suzanne Piesker
Fri 09 May London England (Shepherd's Bush Empire)
Sat 10 May Dublin (Whelans)
Sun 11 May Belfast (Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival)
Mon 12 May Galway (Roisin Dubh)
Thursday, May 29
Previously on Jojoblog:
Saturday, May 24
If you'd like this as an MP3 it's available as a download here:
Thanks very much for letting us post it, Chris - Great song and video!
Thursday, May 22
photo: Radio K
Radio K (University of Minnesota student radio) had Jonathan Richman and Tommy Larkins in-studio for a live interview/jokefest/storysession/techslapping back in March of this year
For those of you who can read da French (sprechen sie French ? - I know some), here's a link to a cool revue of the Modern Lovers 1st album, featuring a cool poster too :
Note from rb: approximate english translation here
Saturday, May 17
Henry Miller Memorial Library
As she listened, she came to hear the breath of each place—how the snow falls here, how the ice melts—how, when everything is still—the air breathes. The drums of her ears throbbed with the heartbeat of this place, a particular rhythm that can be heard in no other place. (read more)
-- John Luther Adams The Place Where You Go to Listen
"At the Museum of the North, on the grounds of the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, the composer John Luther Adams has created a sound-and-light installation called The Place Where You Go to Listen—a kind of infinite musical work that is controlled by natural events occurring in real time. The title refers to Naalagiagvik, a place on the coast of the Arctic Ocean where, according to legend, a spiritually attuned Inupiaq woman went to hear the voices of birds, whales, and unseen things around her. In keeping with that magical idea, the mechanism of The Place translates raw data into music: information from seismological, meteorological, and geomagnetic stations in various parts of Alaska is fed into a computer and transformed into an intricate, vibrantly colored field of electronic sound. "(read more)
-- Alex Ross on the composer John Luther Adams "Letter from Alaska: Song of the Earth" The New Yorker May 12 2008
Michael Barthel finds it natural to mention Alex Ross, John Luther Adams, and Jonathan Richman in the same deep breath, for which I salute him more than I already do: read how on clapclap
Listen to a fascinating podcast from The Library Channel with John Luther Adams: Episode 43- Sonic Geography (32:00)
John Luther Adams Website
Friday, May 16
Sunday, May 11
Thursday, May 8
TO me it’s an evidence that the best musician isn’t the one who manages to play the best music : too much technique and not enough soul. But with our man Jojo, you got the best music, soul, sincerity, romance, love, emotion and tutti quanti ... I fell in love with JonathanRichman and The Modern Lovers (Jojo is one ML forever) when I bought the two fisrt albums in 1976.
Jojo and his percussive accompanist Tommy Larkins brought their soul warming contagion to the intimist Nouveau casino this time around.
Opening act was Suzanne, a folk German singer / composer (if you think that German language doesn’t sound good : listen to Trio). I’ve heard that some places, people all went to the bar since the 1st song, but to me she sounded rather ok, some poignant songs even reminded me of Peter Case’s wife (RIP), who opened for some Jojo shows in the early 80’s.
Then the venue began to be more crowded but wasn’t full, less than 300 persons, I reckon. It seems that Jojo will remain a “beautiful loser” and never get the huge success that his music deserves. But he already answered to me about that 5 years ago, saying that “it’s ok with me, I’m glad like that, as I’m glad for people who have success, they all deserve it ...”.
Jojo set was rather long, almost one hour and a half.
It’s always a real pleasure to see this charming man with his melodic songs, his touching / harrowing (but never lacrymose) texts, his so warm-hearted doddering voice, his ubiquitous humour. Not to forget Tommy, whose dumming mixed with Jonathan’s guitar brings a combination full of nuances.
Tommy played a lot of “drums solo” during the show, some lasting almost 30 seconds ! (eheh).
The show was composed (see set list above) by more or less old favorites, like “Girlfren”, “Pablo Picasso”, “Old World”, “Her Mystery ...” (one of my faves ever), but also by completely new (to me) songs, like “Silence”, “Too Young For That OIder Girl”, or this one about cellphones, with a kinda “She Cracked” riff, that Jonathan played twice, the second version being mostly sung by us, the public - one half of the audience being asked by Jojo to say “you can have a cellphone” and the other one answering “but not me”.
Or course, they played a lot of songs of the latest album – the show began by Leonard’s Cohen’s “Here It Is” - including the ones not sung “not in English”.
I do love when Jonathan kindly / (in a) funny (way) speaks or sing live in a foreign (to him) language (he’s so cute) : Spanish, Italian, French, Instro (I mean I heard him say “this is the English part” to indroduce the instrumental part of a song, ahahah, that Jojo !).
On the other hand, i must admit that I’m not very fond of those songs completely sung in Spanish, Italian or French (but Intros : yes !) on albums. That why to me Jonathan’s newest album is ”only” a 9/10. But I guess it’s a way for Jonathan not to be prisoner of the words, same as not being prisoner of the past, like he explains in his song “Es Como El Pan”. And heck, who am I to criticize Jonathan, when I can’t play a single note or sing and, moreover, my first (out of two) son is called Jonathan (guess why ?).
Jojo’s face shows that he was happy to be onstage, a winner/winner combination, as the public showed to him that he enjoyed every second of the show.
We were lucky to get a few encores songs, including “Paris Je T’Aime” and a very appropriate “J’Aime Paris Au mois De Mai” (I love Paris in May !).
By the way, those accapela parts, without microphone, added to the complicity between Jonathan and the public.
I prepared a few questions, but I didn’t met Jojo this time.
Nothing really interesting, don’t worry : as I know that he doesn’t like to speak to speak about his personal life or his music, I didn’t had in mind questions like “are you still scared on airplanes” or “tell me more about that song”, I just imagined silly questions about 78 RPM (Jojo faves) or French food, or “do you prefer Gail or Nicole ?” (nooo, not this last one, of course !).
Anyway, “Baby, you can’t go wrong ...” seeing Jonathan Richman live. And Jojoblog is here to spread the word.
Set list : Here It Is / Le Printemps Des Amoureux Est Venu / Pablo Picasso / Let Her Go Into The Darkness / In Che Mondo Viviamo / You can have A cellphone, But Not Me (?) / Egyptian Reggae / Les Etoiles / I was Dancing In A Lesbian Bar / Because Her Beauty Is Raw And Wild / Silence (?) / When We Refuse To Suffer / No One Was Like Vermeer / Cosi Veloce / Her Mystery Not Of High Heels And Eye Shadow / Springtime In New York / Es Como El Pan / Too Young For This Older Girl / Girlfren / My baby Love Love Loves Me / He Gave Us The Wime To Taste / Cellphone (reprise)
Old World / Not So Much To be Loved As To love / Paris Je T’Aime J’Aime Paris Au Mois De Mai.
Cosa, cosa, especial,
Nuestra cosa celestial
Just me and her staying home tonight
But don’t bug because that’s alright
When it’s celestial, celestial
Oh cosa, cosa, esencial,
Nuestra cosa celestial
Campos magnéticos entre nosotros dos
Coz it’s a celestial, celestial
Protected by celestial forces,
Was my meeting her,
Straight from celestial sources
And straight from the soul
Cosa, cosa natural,
Nuestra cosa celestial,
Electricidad en la oscuridad,
Oh celestial, celestial.
As performed at Radio 3 studios, Madrid, Spain, 22nd May 2007
Monday, May 5
Sunday, May 4
Saturday, May 3
Manchester University 1988: Photo by Nick Barber
Rolling Stone reviews Modern Lovers 88:
"To understand Jonathan Richman records, it's almost imperative that you see him perform."
Modern Lovers 88
See more of Nick Barber's Jonathan Richman photographs here
Wed 4 June Los Angeles CA The Mint
Thu 5 June Los Angeles CA The Mint
Fri 6 June Los Angeles CA The Mint
Sat 7 June Los Angeles CA The Mint
Mon 16 June San Francisco CA Make-Out Room
Thu 26 June Calgary AB Grace Presbyterian Church
via High Road Touring