Jad Fair

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Jad Fair
JadVillette (crop).jpg
Jad Fair at Villette Sonique 2011, Parc de la Villette, Paris
Background information
Born (1954-06-09) June 9, 1954 (age 60)
Coldwater, Michigan, United States
Genres Indie rock
Alternative rock
Instruments Vocals, guitar, drums
Years active 1977–present
Labels 50 Skidillion Watts, Iridescence, Paperhouse, Alternative Tentacles, Thick Syrup Records
Associated acts Half Japanese
Website www.jadfair.org

Jad Fair (born June 9, 1954) is an American singer, guitarist and graphic artist, most famous for being a founding member of lo-fi alternative rock group Half Japanese.

Biography[edit]

Fair was born in Coldwater, Michigan.[1] In 1974, with his brother David, Jad Fair founded the lo-fi group Half Japanese. Since then, Half Japanese released nearly 30 records.[2]

Besides Half Japanese Fair performs and records as a solo artist, as well as collaborating with such artists as Terry Adams, Norman Blake, Kevin Blechdom, Isobel Campbell, Eugene Chadbourne, DQE, Steve Fisk, Fred Frith, God Is My Co-Pilot, Richard Hell, Daniel Johnston, J. Mascis, Jason Willett, Monster Party, Weird Paul Petroskey, R. Stevie Moore, Thurston Moore, The Pastels, Phono-Comb, Steve Shelley, Strobe Talbot, Teenage Fanclub, The Tinklers, Moe Tucker, Bill Wells, Jason Willett, Adult Rodeo, Lumberob, Yo La Tengo, and John Zorn. Because of his constant output and his large series of collaborations, his discography is very large, and mostly consists of releases on small independent labels. In 1982 Fair released his first solo work, the single "The Zombies of Mora-Tau" followed by the full length album Everyone Knew ... But Me one year later.

Besides his musical career he's also active as a visual artist, drawings as well as papercuttings. He took up papercutting to alleviate boredom while touring on the road.[3] Many of the album covers are made by Fair. Four books of Fair's art have been published. Exhibitions of Fair's paper cuts and drawings have taken place in New York, Tokyo, Glasgow, Austin, Paris, London, Houston, The Hague at the State-X New Forms festival and in Nantes at Le Lieu Unique together with Daniel Johnston.

It's Spooky is a 1989 collaboration album by Daniel Johnston and Jad Fair. Strange but True is a collaborative album between the band Yo La Tengo and Jad Fair. It was released by Matador Records in 1998. Song titles on the album were taken from outrageous newspaper headlines. In 2002 Fair recorded an album with R. Stevie Moore, titled FairMoore, described as "a lovely, heartfelt effort that shows both in top form" by Dave Mandl, who stated that it "brings together two fiercely original figures in the American music underground", the album consisting of Fair reciting his poetry over Moore's instrumental backing. Words Of Wisdom And Hope is a collaboration between Glasgow, Scotland's Teenage Fanclub and Fair, released in 2002.

In 2008 Vincent Moon made a short documentary called Paris lost in Texas, which is part of his The Take-Away Shows-series. In this short movie he visits Fair in house in Texas. In the same year experimental instrument builder Yuri Landman constructed for Fair a special 2 string instrument called the Bachelor QS. In 2011 Half Japanese reunited as a live band and toured through Europe. In 2011 Thick Syrup Records released the compilation album '78 LTD. This album features the track "36 Perfect Ways I Ching of Love" Fair made with Ken Stringfellow (Posies, R.E.M.). In 2012 Fair contributed to the Landman album That's Right Go Cats with a 22 minute vocal contribution on side A of the record. The Nantes based venue Le Lieu Unique has organised a large exhibition of graphical work made by Fair and Daniel Johnston in April 2012. In the same month Fair released a lost album called Songs from a Haunted House with Gilles Reider on Interbang Records.

In 2012 Jad Fair released on Joyful Noise Recordings a collaboration with French experimentalist trio Hifiklub, and German guitarist/producer kptmichigan. The band was originally assembled to provide the audio component to Jad Fair's art exhibition at Le Dojo - Nice in France, 2011.

Discography[edit]

In Half Japanese[edit]

Main article: Half Japanese

Solo[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • Everyone Knew ... But Me (Press, 1983)
  • Monarchs (Iridescence, 1984)
  • Best Wishes (Iridescence, 1987)
  • Great Expectations (Bad Alchemy, 1989)
  • Attack of Everything (Paperback, 1990)
  • I Like It When You Smile (Paperhouse, 1992)
  • Short Songs (Smells Like Records, 1993)
  • Greater Expectations (Psycho Acoustic Sounds/TEC. Tones, 1995)
  • Jackpot, Songs and Art (Paperback, 1997)
  • Spooly Tales (Book & CD, 1997)
  • Sunshiney Sunshine (download)

Compilation albums[edit]

  • Mr. Snail's Halloween Party (Snail Sounds, 2005)
  • Beautiful Songs (The Best Of Jad Fair) (3xCD, Comp), 2011 Fire Records

EPs[edit]

  • The Zombies of Mora-Tau (Press, 1982)
  • Jad Fair EP (Seminal Twang, 1991)
  • Three Cycles (CD, Maxi) Maison Populaire – Centre D'Art Mira Phalaina 2005

Singles[edit]

  • "Good Day" – (Arts & Crafts Series Vol. 1, 2004)
  • "Three Cycles" (France, 2005)
  • "Samantha" (Third Uncles Records, 2009)

With David Fair[edit]

  • Jad and David Fair – Best Friends (UK Vesuvius, 1996)
  • Jad and David Fair – 26 Monster Songs for Children (Kill Rock Stars, 1998)
  • Jad and David Fair – Six Dozen Cookies (2006)
  • David and Jad Fair – Halloween Songs (Thick Syrup Records, 2008)
  • David and Jad Fair – I'll Be Moe (Thick Syrup Records, 2009)

With Daniel Johnston[edit]

With Kramer[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • Jad Fair and KramerRoll Out The Barrel (1988, Shimmy-Disc)
  • Jad Fair and Kramer – The Sound of Music. An Unfinished Symphony in 12 Parts (1998, Shimmy-Disc/Knitting Factory)

In Mosquito[edit]

  • Mosquito – Oh No Not Another Mosquito My House Is Full of Them! (Psycho Acoustic Sounds, 1993)
  • Mosquito – Time Was (ERL/Smells Like Records, 1993)
  • Mosquito – UFO Catcher (Japan. Time Bomb, 1993)
  • Mosquito – Cupid's Fist (Hol. Red Note, 1994)

With Nao[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • Jad and Nao – Half Robot (Paperhouse, 1993)
  • Jad and Nao – Half Alien (Sakura Wrechords Japan, 1997)
  • Jad and Nao – Half Monster (Misc. Music, 2008)

With The Pastels[edit]

EPs[edit]

  • Jad Fair and The PastelsThis Could Be the Night EP (Paperhouse, 1991)
  • Jad Fair and The Pastels – No. 2 EP (Paperhouse, 1992)

With Gilles Reider[edit]

With The Shapir-O Rama[edit]

  • We Are the Rage – Jad Fair & The Shapir-O'Rama (Japan. Avant) 1996
  • I Like Your Face – Jad Fair & Shapir-O'Rama (1999)
  • We Are the Rage – Jad Fair & the Shapir-O Rama (2002)

With Teenage Fanclub[edit]

Albums[edit]

Singles[edit]

  • Teenage Fanclub and Jad Fair – "Near To You" (Geographic, 2002)
  • Teenage Fanclub and Jad Fair – "Always In My Heart" (Alternative Tentacles, 2002)
  • Teenage Fanclub and Jad Fair – "Like a Monkey in a Zoo" (Pema, 2006)

With Jason Willett[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • Jason Willett/Jad Fair/Gilles – Rieder (Megaphone) (1992)
  • Jason Willett & Jad Fair – It's All Good (Megaphone Limited) (1995)
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – Honeybee (Dr Jim's, 1996)
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – The Mighty Super-Heroes (Marginal Talent, 1997)
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – Wonderful World (Shrimper) (1997) triple cassette
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – Twister (Dark Beloved Cloud) (1997)lp
  • Jason Willett & Jad Fair – We're Going to the Moon (Megaphone Limited) cd (1998)
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – Wild (Megaphone Limited) (1998) cd
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – The Mighty Hypnotic Eye (Dr Jim's) (1999) cd
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – Enjoyable songs (Alternative tentacles) lp & cd (1999)
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – The Attack of Everything (Paperback + cd) (2002)
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – Superfine (public eyesore) (2005) cd

Singles[edit]

  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – "Punk Rock" (Chlorophyl, 1996)
  • Jad Fair & Jason Willett – "The Corpse is Missing" (Slab-O-Concrete, 1996)

With Yo La Tengo[edit]

With Phono-Comb[edit]

  • In A Haunted House 7" (Derivative Records, 1995)
  • Monsters, Lullabies...and the Occasional Flying Saucer CD (Shake the Record, 1996)

Other projects[edit]

  • Between Meals – Oh No I Just Knocked Over a Cup of Coffee (Iridescence, 1983)
  • Coo Coo Rocking Time – Coo Coo Party Time (50 Skidillion Watts, 1990)
  • The Making Of The Album, 1991, Seminal Twang – TWANG 02 CD Maxi Single w/ Daniel Johnston, Gilles Reider & Tom Recchion
  • Workdogs in Hell – Workdogs in Hell (Sympathy For The Record Industry, 1993)
  • Strobe Talbot – 20 Pop Songs (Alternative Tentacles, 2001)
  • Jad Fair and R. Stevie MooreFairMoore (Old Gold, 2002)
  • Jad Fair & Bill Wells – Whale EP (Friends And Relatives Records, ?)
  • Jad Fair And Daisy Cooper – South Pole (Lathe, 8", Ltd, Shape, Cle), People In A Position To Know, 2007
  • Human Adult Band / Jad Fair – Samantha (7", Spl) 2009, Third Uncle Records
  • Coo Coo Rocking Time – Seven Ways To Sunday (Thick Syrup Records Box Set, 2010)
  • Coo Coo Rocking Time – Coo Coo Party Time – Remastered Louder (Thick Syrup Records, 2011)
  • Jad Fair & Hifiklub & Kptmichigan – Bird House (7", ori + 12", sin) 2011, Les Disques En Rotin Réunis, Joyful Noise Recordings
  • Yuri Landman Ensemble feat. Jad Fair & Philippe PetitThat's Right Go Cats, 2012, (CD Thick Syrup Records, LP Siluh Records)
  • Whistling Joy Jumpers: Jad Fair, Thollem McDonas & Brian ChaseSurprising Wooden Clocks (Thick Syrup Records, 2013)

Compilations[edit]

  • Jad Fair / Tom Recchion / Ant Farm – Slowscan Vol. 4 (Cass, Comp, Ltd, C60), 1986 Slowscan

References[edit]

External links[edit]