Friday, November 03, 2006

My dear friend Lee Jackson at Womblife just wrote the text below regarding the death of Jason DiEmilio and since he so precisely captures my feelings about all this I've decided to include Lee's words here as well:

The sad case of Jason DiEmilio
What would you do if a medical condition impeded upon your ability to hear, play and enjoy music? Like, made it impossible. I never really knew Jason DiEmilio beyond some email correspondence and an appreciation for his work. His drone/noise project The Azusa Plane defined homemade American tone bliss in the late '90s, and he released the first album by respected psych popsters Mazarin on his Victoria imprint on top of exploring other label and musical endeavors. He died recently of an apparent suicide. The facts are cloudy at best, but it seems his failing health was making his life unbearable in some way. It's an especially moving story to some of us because we have such fond memories of this guy, his intensity, his devotion to sound art and the underground community in general--all of the best things about taking chances and following your own muse in this cruel often indifferent world. He must have released over three dozen singles in his time, many of which were splits with drone titans of the era. He also played Terrastock 2 and 3. On an email list people have been discussing him, his music, what his life and death means, the state of underground and the world in general. Be aware of those friends and acquaintances who seem to literally drop off the face of the earth. They don't just drop off. Maybe they go even further underground, look for new routes of travel, new realms of vitality, and sometimes the search may seem in vain. Sometimes hope may seem dead. I wish and hope that Jason knew that his search was not in vain. His myriad singles, splits, live albums, the Azusa Plane's gorgeous "Tycho Magnetic Anomaly" (the second ever Camera Obscura release) all hold a special place in my heart. Rest easy, fellow traveler.