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August 16 at 10:05am

Jeffrey Lewis Is The Truth Of Now

By Ted Hope

Early this year, we stumbled into a show at Joe’s Pub.  We were there to see some folkie that there was some buzz about.  Luckily there was some guy all alone at his table with great sight lines and we invited ourselves to join him.  Then Jeffrey Lewis took the stage.

Somehow we knew nothing about Jeffrey.  He wasn’t whom we came to see.  On top of it all, he was even performing his own songs but those of the Anarcho Punk band CRASS who I also knew absolutely nothing about.  The night remains one of my favorite rock events ever!  Okay, not quite X’s Wild Gift tour at Boston’s The Channel, with Mission of Burma opening, but still, right up there, and that other one was sooo long ago.
Jeffrey has an incredible body of work.  I have now bought or otherwise acquired virtually all of it and it thrills me repeatedly.  The songs are consistently a blast, funny & wise, and occasionally work their way deep into my subconscious.  I love his comic books, but his histories (The History Of Lower East Side Punk, Of Communism, Of The Fall) really get me.  Now he’s written something on the NYTimes’ consistently great Measure For Measure blog that is the music equivalent of Jonathan Lethem’s piece on influences earlier this year.
I look forward to this world where Jeffrey Lewis continues to consistently makes all kinds of stuff to delight and wake us up.  There’s so much of it out there, I am going to have to make it a couple of posts, so stay tuned.
The Complete History of Punk Rock:

The History Of Communism (Parts 1 & 2):

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