JACK ROSE discography by Byron Coley (from Arthur No. 33)

As published in Arthur No. 33 (Jan 2013) (sold out)



Above: Still from Jack Rose & Glenn Jones: The Things That We Used to Do film/dvd, courtesy Jesse Sheppard and Glenn Jones.

JACK ROSE DISCOGRAPHY

by Byron Coley (with thanks for help from Mike Gangloff & Glenn Jones)

Hung Far Low, Portland Oregon (Klang CDR, 2001)
Doctor Ragtime (Tequila Sunrise CDR, 2002)
Red Horse White Mule (Eclipse ECL-012 LP, 2002)
“Red Horse II” on Wooden Guitar (Locust Music 33 CD, 2003; 2LP, 2008)
Raag Manifestos (VHF #85 CD, 2003; Eclipse ECL-039 LP, 2004)
Opium Musick (Eclipse ECL-026 LP, 2003)
“White Mule” on Golden Apples of the Sun (Bastet BAST-0001, 2004)
Kensington Blues  (VHF #92 CD; Tequila Sunrise TS-12001 LP, 2005)
“White Mule III” on Imaginational Anthem (Tompkins Square TSQ0531 CD, 2005)
“Box of Pine” on This Side Up (UK Ptolemaic Terrascope POT-35 CD, 2005)
“Sun Dogs” & “Now That I’m a Man Full Grown” on By The Fruits You Shall Know The Roots (Time-Lag/Eclipse 3LP, 2005)
“Hey Fuck You Rag” on Two Million Tongues Festival (Bastet BAST-0006 CD, 2005)
“Variations on Fleur de Lis/Be The Name of the Lord” on Dream Magazine #5 comp (SWE Dream Magazine CD, 2005)
“Untitled (Parts I & II)” (Tequila Sunrise TS-7002 7”, 2006)
“Cross the North Fork II” on Imaginational Anthem Volume Two (Tompkins Square TSQ1424 CD, 2006)
“Amp” on Less Self Is More Self (A Benefit Compilation for Tarantula Hill) (Ecstatic Peace E#107 2CD, 2006)
Jack Rose (aRCHIVE 28 CD, 2006; Tequila Sunrise TS-12006 LP, 2007)
“How Green Was My Valley/Buckdancer’s Choice” (split with Silverster Anfang) (BEL Funeral Folk ff015 7”, 2007)
“Since I’ve Been a Man Full Grown” on The Great Koonaklaster Speaks: A John Fahey Celebration (Table of the Elements TOE-CD-91 CD, 2007)
“Revolt” on Mind the Gap Volume 68 (BEL Gonzo Circus GC084, 2007)
I Do Play Rock and Roll (Three Lobed TLR-049 CD/LP, 2008)
Dr. Ragtime & His Pals (Tequila Sunrise TS-12007R, 2008)
“Mr. Rose Visits Washington DC” on Meet the Philly Eilte (BEL K-raa-k 7”, 2009)
The Black Dirt Sessions (Three Lobed TLR-066 LP, 2009)
Luck in the Valley (Thrill Jockey 229 LP, 2010)
“Moon in the Gutter” on Rough Trade Shops – Psych Folk 10 (UK Rough Trade COOPR250 CD, 2010)
Unrock Series – 12.11.2009 (GER Unsound UNR-009 CDR, 2010)

As Dr. Ragtime:
“Buckdancer’s Choice/Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground” (Sacred Harp Library 7”, 2005)
“Alap/Flirting with the Undertaker” (Tequila Sunrise TSR-6, 10” 78, 2005)
(compiler) Dr. Ragtime Presents Nice and Nasty (Ecstatic Yod CDR, 2008)

Jack Rose & Jason Bill:
Via St. Louis (Drunken Fish dfr-36 CD, 1996)

Jack Rose & Glenn Jones:
“Linden Avenue Stomp” on The Wire Tapper 17 (UK Wire Magazine CD, 2007)
The Things We Used to Do DVD (Strange Attractors Audio House SAAH058 DVD, 2010)

Jack Rose & the Black Twig Pickers:
Jack Rose & The Black Twig Pickers (Klang Industries 008 LP; VHF #116 CD, 2009)
“Revolt/Soft Steel Prison” (UK Great Pop Supplement GPS28 7”, 2008)
“Shooting Creek/Rappanhannock River Rag” (UK Great Pop Supplement GPS49 7”, 2009)

Jack Rose with D. Charles Speer & Helix:
Ragged and Right (Thrill Jockey 12.42 mini-LP, 2010)

with Ugly Head:
Spoon Knife Fuck (Transparanoia 7” , 1994)
A Bowl of Fever (Transparanoia 7”, 1994)
“These Drugs Aren’t Working” & “Throttled Sleep” on Dixie Flatline (Radioactive Rat CD, 1994)
Silence Is the Mystery of the Future Age (Transparanoia CD, 1997)

with Pelt:
Brown Cyclopedia (Radioactve Rat 333 LP, 1995)
“Big Stick and Little Sweet Play ‘In the Pocket’” (possibly) on With Pure Hell Raying From Our Sacs (no label MC, 1995)
Burning / Filament / Rockets (Econogold Ego-002 CD, 1995)
Snake to Snake (Klang Industries LP, 1996)
Woove Issue Five split with Soma 77 (WUVT-FM 7”, 1996)
Max Meadows (VHF #28 CD, 1996)
Techeod (VHF #36 CD, 1997)
For Michael Hannahs (no label CDR, 1997; VHF #38 CDR, 1998)
Black Florida split with Harry Pussy (Klang Part 3 7”, 1998)
“Zinc Mine” on untitle comp (UK Ptolemaic Terrascope POT-24 7”, 1998)
“Tibetan Ass Hash” on Umlauted Roman Numeral Five (Klang Industries Fifth Anniversary) (Klang 2CDR, 1999)
Empty Bell Ringing in theSky (VHF #43 2LP, 1999)
Rob’s Choice (VHF #54 CD, 1999)
two untitled tracks on Pelt/Pengo/Andy Gilmore Live At The Vilage Gate Carbon CR33 CDR, 2000)
Keyhole (w/Keenan Lawler, Eric Clark) (Eclipse ECL-006 LP, 2000)
Ayahuasca (VHF #62 2CD, 2001)
Houston 2001 (Klang CDR, 2001)
Six of Cups (Klang CDR, 2001)
“The Signal Tower at Murraysville, Pennsylvania” on The Invisible Pyramid (Last Visible Dog 2CD, 2003)
Keyhole II (w/Keenan Lawler, Eric Clark) (Eclipse ECL-017 LP, 2003)
Pearls from the River (VHF #76 CD, 2003)
A Capsized Moment/Paris 3.5.04 (Klang CDR, 2004)
Untitled (VHF #90 CD, 2005)
Skullfuck/Bestio Tergum Degero (VHF #98 CD, 2006)
“Sunflower River Blues” on I Am the Resurrection: A Tribute to John Fahey (Vanguard 79789-2 CD, 2006)
Heraldic Beasts (Eclipse ECL-050 2LP, 2006)

with Pelt/Rake:
United Supreme Council/Oastem! Vibe Orchestra (Eclipse ECL-009 LP, 2001)

with Dredd Foole & the Din:
The Whys of Fire (Ecstatic Yod #49C/FYPC20 CD, 2003)

with Glenn Jones:
“Linden Avenue Stomp” (unique version) on This is the Wind That Blows It Out (Strange Attractors Audio House SAAH024 CD, 2004)

AH, MAN: A career-spanning conversation with JACK ROSE by Brian Rademaekers (from Arthur No. 33)

As published in Arthur No. 33 (Jan 2013)

AH, MAN
A career-spanning conversation with JACK ROSE, American musician, recorded just a few months before he died in 2009
By Brian Rademaekers

When I started covering music in Philadelphia in 2007, my beat—the city’s crumbling post-industrial river wards—felt like a veritable nexus of weird folk and psychedelic experimentation. The Espers clan and their compound, Fern Knight, Fursaxa, and heavy-hitters like Bardo Pond were all there, churning out a storm of beautiful, strange music that seemed in part a product of the ancient, twisted alleyways of Fishtown and Kensington.

Here, Jack Rose was the benevolent, unassuming King—a master set apart from his peers by a massive presence and an indomitable, mystical talent that elevated him from mere musician to magician. He was a dark alchemist, transforming calloused flesh, polished wood and taut steel into the intoxicating, intricate worlds of sound that were his music. Not that Jack — Jack the giant, hulking Virginian — would ever presume to wear a crown; it was just something that he brought into the room with him, disarming all with a humble warmth offset by a blunt, caustic confidence that he wielded like a knife at just the right moments. These days, most of the musicians from that scene are gone from the neighborhood, though none as gone as Jack.

When I first heard Jack’s 2005 album Kensington Blues, I was thunderstruck, lost in awe that such a masterpiece not only existed, but that it was made in my time, by a man whose elbows polished the same bar counters as mine. Listening to Jack’s recordings was great [see sidebar for a complete discography] but best of all was seeing Jack live, spreading his gospel in church halls or little clubs or living rooms and, finally, along the banks of the Delaware River for a summer concert series shortly before he died.

Watching him amble up to his chair with guitar in hand signaled the start of near-religious experience. He would hunch over the instrument, cock his head to the side and, with closed eyes, unleash wild syncopated layers of rhythms, leaving listeners rapt in a sort of devastated trance. Here was this giant bearded man suddenly becoming seamlessly enmeshed in his guitar to create these idiosyncratic spells that were at once as delicate as flowers and as forceful as hurricanes. Seeing that miracle in the flesh, there was nothing else like it in the world. For me, it was like being a jazz freak in the ’40s and living down the street from Charlie Parker.

So began a years-long obsession. I felt compelled to document this genius quietly living in our midst. And Jack obliged. It never seemed to bother him that some reporter from a little local paper was always pestering him, asking for details about a show or politely begging for an advance copy of a record. In that way, Jack betrayed the appearance of a dominating, cocksure master and revealed a man with a very big heart.

My pretext for interviewing Jack in the summer of 2009 was his forthcoming long-player on Thrill Jockey, Luck in the Valley. Jack was elated. He and his wife, Laurie, had just bought a tidy little brick rowhouse a few blocks from the city’s blasted Port Richmond waterfront. He bragged about his new car, a Honda that he loved for its efficiency in carrying his guitars from gig to gig. He raved about a pizza joint he’d found down the street, about how quiet his block was. To him, the Thrill Jockey release was the milestone he’d been awaiting, a culmination of years of hard work and mastery that meant he could finally say he was making good bread on the merit of his music.

For three hours, he let me follow him around the house, tape recorder in tow, as he smoked and poured tea and pulled LPs from his wall of records. He was a man satisfied, a musician reveling in the feeling that his art was finally about to find the place in the world that it deserved.

When Jack died a few months later, I groped through the shock, looking for some way to respond to the ugly, gaping hole that had so suddenly appeared, and decided on transcribing the whole of our conversation from that summer day on Ontario Street. That tape is presented here, and captures Jack in a bright mood at the peak of his career, ruminating on everything from his first lessons to his labor on “Kensington Blues” to the joy of landing the Thrill Jockey deal.
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Reviews by C and D (Arthur No. 8/Jan. 2004)

Originally published in Arthur No. 8 (Jan. 2004)

REVIEWS BY C and D

Unicorns
Who Will Cut Our Hair When We’re Gone?
(Alien8)
C: Who?
D: Who what?
C: Who, Sir D, will cut the Unicorns’ hair when they’re gone?
D: Ah, yes.
C: You don’t really care, do you?
D: Can’t say that I do, no, not really. These guys are wacky.
C: Sub-Ween wacky pop.
D: Helium-sucking stoners.
C: Queasy synthesizers.
D: A Rephlex artist gone Dr. Demento.
C: [puzzled]
D: This is like hearing someone you’re not interested in taking drugs. Boring drugs.
C: Maybe too much Flaming Lips for them…? There’s some talent here… “Child Star” sounds like a Radiohead parody…. You know, it’s not easy providing comic relief.
D: This whatever-it-is is not one of my cups of tea.
C: And you have a lot of china.
D: Indeed I do.

Eugene McDaniels
Outlaw
(Water/Runt)
D: [reading] “Eugene McDaniels – the soul anarchist.” Then it says here, “Under conditions of national emergency , like now, there are only two kinds of people — those who work for freedom and those who do not… the good guys vs. the bad guys. — mc d.”
C: [singing along to opening track “Outlaw”:]“She’s an outlaw, she don’t wear a bra.” Um, yeah…I don’t know if it’s me, but this doesn’t seem to have aged well.
D: This came out in the early ‘70s.
C: The guy has cred, supposedly he gets sampled a lot. And you can hear why… there’s a nice feel to these songs. Ron Carter on bass, from Miles’ group…
D: But the lyrics are terrible! And his singing is totally affected. “La la la smoke a joint” blah blah.
C: Yeah I don’t get what the big deal is either. None of these songs stand out…in a good way, at least. [laughter]
D: The cover looks amazing, though.
C: Talk about badass, there it is in front of ya.

The Starvations
Get Well Soon
(GSL)
C: We haven’t got off to a real positive start here…
D: Who chose these CDs, anyway???
C: The editor.
D: Hmm… Hey, I like this one. Very Gun Club! Do you remember “cowpunk”?
C: Yeah. [shudders] Actually I think this is better than, say, the Bo Deans or something.
D: The Bo Deans! Now there is a name from the distant past.
C: These guys are from L.A… Kinda makes sense. Countryish rock, some punk aggression… slide guitars…walking bass…throaty singer…
D: Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds.
C: Yeah, that’s true. There’s some Birthday Party in there too. [looking at the lyric sheet] I can’t really understand what he’s saying…
D: He should practice his enunciation.
C: He sings in a tough key a lot of the time but he hits it. [reading from the lyric sheet] Yep…lyrics about graveyards, ghosts, voodoo, burgundy wine, rebel angels…and a guy called Rat Boy. Folks, we have ourselves a bona fide Romantic.
D: A bohemian.
C: But anyways, you can totally hear the L.A. heritage: not just the Gun Club but also the Blasters and the Geraldine Fibbers…
D: Nice to hear an accordion too. This is good!

22-20s
05-03
(Astralwerks)
D: Whoa! Who is this?!?
C: They’re like 20 years old, from England. It’s like the Starvations, yeah?
D: But more banging. Blues-rock with punk balls!
C: Yeah the hooks are bigger, the playing is better. Hard to believe they’re not Americans. They’ve got the Gun Club in there too…
D: That solo is like that stuff the white guy who plays with R. L.Burnside does!
C: Kenny Brown. Yeah you’re right, I hadn’t noticed that. He totally does slide solos like Kenny.
D: You can dance to this stuff.
C: Yeah that’s the R.L. influence maybe, I dunno. This track [“Messed Up”] is a march but it’s also real soulful… That’s hard to pull off. The dude’s voice reminds me of a non-fucked up Shaun Ryder, a little.
D: “King Bee,” that’s an old one.
C: Big Chicago blues stomper. This is something. Pretty good for a debut EP–there’s not a weak track. I see why there’s such a fuss about these guys. Too bad we missed em when they opened for Jet and Kings of Leon last month. Oh well.

Sun Kil Moon
Ghosts of the Great Highway
(Jetset)
D: What’s going on here? Are we reviewing for Some Depression now?
C: No Depression, you mean.
D: Whatever… all of this so far is roots-ish.
C: [looking through CD pile] Yeah, and there’s more on the way. Must be the season or something.
D: So, who is this?
C: Mark Kozalek’s new band. He used to do a band called Red House Painters. Pretty popular with the NPR crowd.
D: Never heard of ‘em.
C: Yeah, well… What a voice, eh?
D: It is a pretty voice… This kind of music reminds me of seaside towns. Long sad afternoons in the winter.
C: Yeah, it’s sad but it’s beautiful, it’s not depressing. Long, droney folk songs… ooo, lookit that, here come the drums 3:45 in to the first song. Always a nice touch.
D: I would say there’s a bit of Neil Young to him.
C: Yeah, fer shure. This song “Salvador Sanchez”…fantastic electric guitar. Listen to that simple riff and then the endless solo… People should turn in their copy of Greenville and get this instead.
D: Greendale.
C: Whatever. When he puts the strings behind his falsetto, whoa. This is almost too intense to listen to in sequence. You know what? This is what Jay Farrar from Son Volt wishes he could do…
D: It is bittersweet music.
C: Stunning, really. On first listen, I gotta say I’m stunned. That doesn’t happen too often.

Jolie Holland
Catalpa
(Anti/Epitaph)
C: She sounds a little like Karen Dalton.
D: Is this new?
C: Yeah. She was in this group the Be Good Tanyas for a little while, I guess. It’s good, huh. Acoustic guitar, ukulele, and what a voice.
D: Sleighbells!
C: Yeah. Country-blues-folk… Very pretty, kinda spooky. She’s got that white-girl Billie Holiday thing going for her, just like Karen Dalton did. [listening] Did you hear that? She sang “3 a.m.” like “three-eye-am.”
D: She must be American…
C: She is.
D: There’s a song on here credited to “Holland/Parton/Syd Barrett”…?
C: Ha! How appropriate for this ish of Arthur… [reading the sleeve] “The Littlest Birds.” I hafta admit, I don’t know exactly what she’s doing here…I guess this is a medley?
D: It must be. [repeating a lyric:] “The littlest birds sing the prettiest songs…” That’s true, you know.

Mark Lanegan Band
Here Comes That Weird Chill (Methamphetamine Blues, Extras and Oddities) EP
(Beggars Banquet)
C: Here’s another distinctive voice. Brought to you by Marlboro…
D: Mark Lanegan! He’s in Queens of the Stone Age. That guy who comes out in the middle of the show and hangs on to the microphone for dear life!
C: Right, right. Used to be in Screaming Trees, did a bunch of solo records on Sub Pop, blah blah. Amazing artist that not enough people check on, for some reason.
D: This is pretty rough stuff.
C: Yeah it’s kinda grimy. Machine rock, at least this first track.
D: Nightmarish drone…
C: I gotta say I prefer to hear his voice unfiltered… [checking credits] Oh right, okay so this is the session they did with Chris Goss, Dean Ween and Josh and Nick from the Queens and so on. With that lineup you could probably call it Desert Session 8.5 or something. Only in happened in the Valley, not the desert.
D: [listening to “On the Steps of the Cathedral’]: What is this…?
C: Pretty, eh? Like a rondolet… And the next song is a Beefheart cover, “Clear Spot.” It sounds like they’re using a drum machine, really tinny and flat. This stuff has a Tricky feel to it. Very disorienting.
D: Reminds me of that song at the beginning of The Sopranos… [singing] “Born under a bad sign…”
C: Yeah, I can hear that. Listen to that solo…it’s all high up, like one of those solos Jack White does on Elephant. Only this was recorded before that came out… This track “Message to Mine” sounds like a demo for a really good Screaming Queens song… can you hear that organ? Nice. And a little bit of the bubblegum pop on the chorus, which is appropriate since Lanegan’s album coming out next year is called Bubblegum…
D: I like it…
C: Spoken-word here… tacked piano… “Skeletal History,” wow listen to that… he’s crooning with a swagger.
D: The bass is covered in fuzz!
C: Yeah. Good stuff. Sounds like Laney gone beatnik… [repeating words] “Girls stare in dead-eyed wonder”… Yikes.
D: And this last one is a dub?
C: Yeah. It’s like a country dub, right? 6am comedown music… This is a strong EP.
D: 8 songs, 26 minutes.
C: Thanks for the stats, D.

Califone
Heron King Blues
(Thrill Jockey)
C: Uncategorizable …dark country…banjo…electronics… a lot of the ol’ kling-klang.
D: I like his voice but I can’t hear what he’s saying.
C: Yeah it’s always like that with these guys, you just catch weird phrases here and there… I like this, this might be my favorite Califone yet…
D: There’s a bit of a Tom Waits Bone Machine feel here. The Lanegan record had that, too!
C: Mmm, you‘re right. Kind of rustic, kind of futuristic. Vintage futurist. It reminds me some of that Medicine album that came out this year too… Apparently this is something of a concept record.
D: What is that on the cover?
C: That would be the heron king, I guess. Kinda got that witchy Lord of the Rings-Mercury Rev-Guy Maddin-Svankmajer vibe, doesn’t it? And then, check this out… I was gonna say Califone is like Radiohead and Wilco stripped of the pretension and pop sense, but then there’s this track… [skips ahead to “2 Sisters Drunk On Each Other”] It’s actually funky. They’re bringing in that Sly Stone stuff.
D: There’s a Riot Goin’ On…
C: Exactly. This is a proper jam band. Sounds like some of this stuff was improvised, but it really works. I’ve seen ‘em do it live. Totally underrated.
D: They played at All Tomorrow’s Parties at UCLA! We saw them–
C: That’s right…
D: Incredible.

Book of Lies: The Disinformation Guide to Magick and the Occult
edited by Richard Metzger
(Disinfo)
D: So we’re reviewing books now, too?
C: Yeah, and DVDs, if we have time.
D: Which ones?
C: We’ve go the Guitar Wolf DVD here from Narnack, if we have time.
D: Nice.
C: So, this certainly keeps us on the witchy path, don’t it?
D: Yes. [looking at the list of contributors on the cover] But for a book about witches and magick…why are there no women here?
C: [taking the book away] Give me that. Lemme look. Hey, you’re right…. [reading further] Oh geez. From the editor’s introduction: “For some reason, I have always considered myself to be a warlock. Even when I was very young, I don’t know why, really but it is true … [W]hen I was a little kid I really loved Bewitched.” I mean, is this guy serious? “It works on a lot of levels, metaphorically speaking, for me to consider myself a magical businessman, if you see what I am saying.”
D: Oh god.
C: Yeah. Richard Metzger, he’s that guy who’s on all the Disinfo book covers, smirking. [still reading] Then he ends it with some talk about an emerging mutant race and asks “Which side are you on?” I mean, come on, these are Grant Morrison ideas here…
D: …who is in the book.
C: Yeah, well… Gotta admit there is a lot of good stuff here, although I have no idea how useful it is… Lots of excerpts from books by Robert Anton Wilson, Daniel Pinchbeck, Gary Lachman, Terence McKenna, Julius Evola and so on… Tons of stuff about Gysin and Burroughs and Crowley and Genesis P-Orridge and so on. The usual subjects, in other words.
D: This could be a good introduction, then.
C: Yeah, I suppose, if you want to be introduced to this stuff via a book that‘s title ‘Book of Lies‘ and published by someone called ‘Disinformation.’ I mean, those aren‘t exactly names that inspire confidence on the reader’s part in the authors’ accuracy, you know? Hey, wait! I just found a woman author: Tracy Twyman is in here writing about “Hitler and the Occult.”
D: Oh.
C: Yep. Remember she’s the one who’s in with Boyd Rice on all that Cocteau-conspiracy crap. Losers. Anyways there are some women as subjects in here—Cameron, Ida Craddock and Rosaleen Norton—so it’s not completely Magic Boys’ Club. But it’s close.
D: How many women musicians have we reviewed so far today?
C: Ulp.
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