RIP Jay ReatardPosted: January 13, 2010
Jimmy Lee Lindsey Jr., otherwise known as Jay Reatard, is dead. According to Goner Records in Memphis, he passed away in his sleep last night at the age of 29. The cause of death is as-of-yet unknown.
Instead of stirring speculation surrounding why/how he died, this news brings upon a period of reflection. Reatard achieved many things through music. More than many a member of a garage band could ever hope to achieve in the inevitably-short lifespan of said band. He had success as a solo artist as well as with several bands; most notably The Reatards and The Lost Sounds. As a musician, he was ever-growing and completely captivated people with his songwriting. What you hear upon first glance may sound like a good garage rock song dipped in punk rock but what you actually hear is finely-crafted instrumentation, unfiltered passion, and the will to live a life while knowing damn-well what you’re getting yourself into. It was magical.
I wonder if, with his passing, a wave of newly-found appreciation for his music will hit the indie music world. It would be perfectly normal given the way the world has been known to treat figures of long-time admiration and yet equally as morbid if you take into consideration the fact that garage rock and it’s many disciples have only recently been found to be figures of intrigue in popular music. It’s actually kind of disturbing. The warped way people come to terms with death is through false appreciation for genuine efforts. The difficult thing will be recognizing which people will stop praising Blood Visions for the musical gem that it is after his death leaves the headlines. I suppose it’s a waiting game now.
In the meantime, a track that might still be in good taste somehow.
Jimmy Lee Lindsey Jr.
May 20th, 1980 – January 12th, 2010