Celebrating the man

“Stay obscure long enough, and people might just cry when they finally hear you play”. This was one lesson learnt from the recent benefit concert at New York’s Le Poisson Rouge, for “the beloved, if little-heard, New Zealand musician, Chris Knox”. This according to New York Times’ arts blogger, Ben Sisario, who continues: “For three decades, with his band Tall Dwarfs and as a solo artist, Knox, 57, has been playing whimsical, fractured and heartfelt pop that owes as much to the Beatles as it does to the Fall, and doing it lo-fi. According to Trouser Press, the pre-Pitchfork bible of alt-rock, ‘If Iggy Pop, Joan Jett, Robyn Hitchcock and Lou Reed were all the same person, that’s how important he is to New Zealand pop.’ Hmm, maybe not Joan Jett, but you get the idea. The concert, which raised US$52,000 for Knox, celebrated the idea of the man even more than it did his music. One after another, musicians strummed rough, beginner-level guitar chords, and most sang with a level of pitch control that would have been fatal on American Idol. But that was the point. ‘If it’s a little out of tune, it’s what Chris would want,’ Sharon Van Etten announced in her three-song set.’ Knox lives in Auckland and despite the stroke, is working on a new Tall Dwarfs album, which will feature singing but no words.”


Tags: Chris Knox  New York City  New York Times (The)  Tall Dwarfs  

Artist Max Gimblett goes Oxherding with Lewis Hyde

Artist Max Gimblett goes Oxherding with Lewis Hyde

Auckland born New Yorker and pre-eminent New Zealand artist Max Gimblett has produced his most significant book collaboration with American poet, cultural essayist and MacArthur Fellow Lewis Hyde. Published in September…