Tuesday, January 25

Jonathan Richman, man among gods

Sometimes I find something I really like. I have a deep appreciation for people that can express how they feel about Jonathan Richman, and more importantly, why. I mean, my explanations roughly all come down to: "Look at him! His shirt doesn't match his t-shirt and he looks like he needs a hug. AND NOW HE'S DANCING. HOW ARE YOU NOT IN LOVE?" While I am obviously truly articulate about my love for Jonathan Richman, at this moment I must hand the day (Actually, this was written in May, I just stumbled across it at work today) over to Matt at I'm a Little Teapot. His blog post/article about how Jonathan's humanity in an industry that tends to make people into the divine incarnate, at least in some people's minds, was in a word, awesome.

I'll shut up and just show you some choice bits.

Here's the thing about Jonathan of 2010. He has no Facebook page. There's no official MySpace. No Twitter Feed. He has no web site. There's a stub on the website of his "label", Vapor Records, which carefully points out Jonathan has nothing to do, at all, with the internet. At the concert, there's no
swag or souvenirs for sale - no t-shirts, no CDs, nothing to buy. What you get is the experience of Jonathan singing. I feel like such an...Ass-o, Fanboy that I am, when we started talking to him before the show. I asked him if I could take a picture of him with my son -- which he obliged, coming down off the stage -- Jonathan's response was "hey, do whatever you like." I awkwardly told him about my own Massachusetts roots as we both got tea. He said, "I'm from Natick." I paused, dorkily. "Um, I knew that!"
Jonathan looked at me and said, "How'd you know that?" Here's where my ugly past as a self-absorbed poseur, a reader of fan magazines and liner notes and self-described encyclopedias of rock and roll, a browser of Wikipedia, was shamefully exposed. The best I could do was to say um a couple of times and respond..."I'm psychic...?"

Read the rest over at I'm a Little Teapot! Speaking of choice bits, how awesome are those photos from napkinshoe? They've got a whole little gallery of photos from the Providence show. This is doubtless my favorite.


  1. He could have said, 'I saw your song title "Maybe a walk home from Natick high school".' Jonathan couldn't possibly object to people buying his records, surely?

  2. Anonymous10:52 PM

    This is sort of a random question derived from the line "he looks like he needs a hug."

    Why does JR always look like he's in pain or about to cry when he's on stage? I mean...I've only been to one JR show and watched Take Me to the Plaza, but when I went to the show, I remember being struck by the extent to which he didn't seem to be enjoying himself.

    I'm going to see him again in March. Hope he's feeling better this time. :)

  3. He's just a very emotional person!