Skullman Records

Boo Frog, Snow Bud and the Flower People, Divining Rods, Napalm Beach

Chris’ biography, memoirs

Some people have taken an interest in the fact that Chris began writing his memoirs. This is something he started probably in 2010 after Eric Danielson published a short biography of Chris (dated Feb 28, 2010). Chris worked on his own memoir project off and on until the bizarre kidnapping incident happened to me in January 2014, at which point, I think that everything became so disrupted and confusing that he stopped.

Chris always gave me the impression of refusing to have his understanding of his past, his community, his place in the world shaken by the crazy things that were increasingly happening to and around us, but I suspect that deep down he knew something was off. In any case, our world was quite suddenly very profoundly disrupted, and he seemed to leave off the project at that time and never pick it up again. I know that he didn’t consider it a finished work, and that he wouldn’t have wanted it to have been distributed in its current form.

That said, it contains some useful biographical information as well as memories of experiences that were important to Chris. There is not as much about music in it as one might expect, even though Chris embodied rock n’ roll and loved reading biographies of other musicians. I think in part it’s because of where he was at the time, reassessing or remembering his life in terms of family and other relationships.

Chris was someone I became increasingly interested in between the years of 2006 and 2009 when we began work together musically. I was interested in him first as a musician. I had a lot of questions about him, as I could tell that he was extremely talented and accomplished, yet somehow at the same time, it was very difficult to find any of his albums, or even information about him online. After we’d begun to work together on music, I wrote a poem about him, which I published on MySpace, which was one of those poems I typed on the computer rather than writing down, and because of that, as far as I know, has unfortunately been lost to time. I do remember that I started out describing him as “Black cat, working life number 8” – and envisioned myself as something like an acolyte, following behind him, trying to gather together his recordings – his works. I remember that I had a line about the “moth holes in his blazer” which he thought was funny, because his clothing was not moth-eaten but damaged by cigarette burns.

The work that Eric Danielson did in 2009 and 2010, though flawed, was important because he was filling in blank spaces. The research Danielson did on Chris’ discography was particularly important. Unfortunately, I don’t think that Danielson has been working as a disinterested or supportive party, and that has resulted in increasing problems in what he’s been publishing. Danielson is hardly alone in this regard. There appears to be a system at work which has been sabotaging Chris work and life going back to his childhood, while also consistently and relentlessly wiping away evidence of Chris’ entire existence.

I am determined not to let the wiping machine win.

There is really a lot to be explained or discussed about how Chris approached his music and his legacy. Chris cared about his legacy. And if I had any doubts about that, looking back today at message Chris sent to Mark Lanegan in February 2021, it’s clear that Chris cared – in that moment, it felt to him like one of the most important things he’d done was record with Mark – an album that, like most of Chris’ records – no record label would touch, which Chris finally had to self-release on Bandcamp.

There’s a lot to be said about these things.

 

Comments

No comments so far.

Leave a Reply

 
(will not be published)
 
 
Comment