Waiting for the CTA
March 17, 2009 1:15 PM Subscribe
It's harder to be more obscure and unheralded
posted by wcfields (7 comments total)
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than John Henry Timmis IV
. He barely even tried to sell his own music, almost always giving copies away of his impossibly rare loner-punk 45's. Dieing in 2002, almost 15 years after his last single, from complications resulting from alcoholism, after suffering from the degenerative ear/skull disease mastoiditis-- his potential hardly tapped... until now
Film buffs may know him as the director/producer of the longest movie ever made
, The Cure for Insomnia
staring Lee Groban
reading his same titled 4,080 page poem spliced with porn and heavy metal, clocking in at 87 hours.
Virtually unknown until the song "Death Trip" appeared on an obscure bootleg punk compilation Staring Down the Barrel
. Interest peaked enough for Plastic Crimewave's Secret History of Chicago Music article
to have a write up on him and Drag City/Galactic Zoo
to reissue his forgotten masterpiece, Cosmic Lighting
.Medallion-wearing, twin-neck-guitar-sporting JT IV served himself up as a lightning rod of glam-punk eccentricity, seesawing in these archived recordings between ugly basement rock and lost-mind cosmic acoustic wanderings. Timmis liked to act as though he were already a star: he’d videotape himself singing along to his own songs and hire musicians to play live shows with him and film them for concert movies. But he never seems to have made a sustained attempt to win an audience larger than a few friends, and even when he recorded in a proper studio his music had a rough-around-the-edges DIY feel.