Blog

Jeffrey Lewis & Peter Stampfel Band (USA)

Saturday 19th September, 12.30pm

What takes anti-folk songwriter/comic-book artist Jeffrey Lewis’s fancy these days is collaborating with Peter Stampfel, a dapper 76-year-old Manhattanite. A founding member of the Greenwich Village beatnik/folk outfit the Holy Modal Rounders (in addition to being featured on the Easy Rider soundtrack, and more notable albums and collaborations than you’d care to count) and a member of the Fugs, Stampfel is steeped in the jargon of the 1960s. He and Lewis complement each other wonderfully.

Stampfel plays violin, wildly and raggedly, Lewis is on guitar, and both sing. These two New Yorkers share an obsession with both comic books and songs, as well as a collaborative history that has spawned some of the
most unexpected and delightful music of recent years.

Born and raised New Yorker Jeffrey Lewis leads a double-life, as both a comic book writer/artist and a musician (or is that a triple-life?). His band also has a multi-faceted existence, restlessly exploring a stylistic swath from contemplative folk narratives to distortion-fueled garage rock to soundscape abstractions and more. Most often a trio (though occasionally just Jeffrey solo, or as a duo, and on some tours as a four-piece), the Jeffrey Lewis group has shuffled its name a number of times over the years, from Jeffrey Lewis & The Creeping Brains to Jeffrey Lewis & The Jitters, Jeffrey Lewis & The Jackals, Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkyard, Jeffrey Lightning Lewis & The Rain, and others, in 2014 becoming Jeffrey Lewis & The Jrams.

These various formations have toured the world from Los Angeles to London, Berlin to Beijing, Melbourne to Moscow, sometimes sharing stages or full tours with the likes of Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks, Devendra Banhart, Devo, The Mountain Goats, Thurston Moore, The Fall, The Vaselines, Roky Erickson, Pulp, Beth Orton, Frank Black, The Fiery Furnaces, Daniel Johnston, Scout Niblett, The Moldy Peaches, Cornershop, The Cribs, Dr. Dog, Kimya Dawson, Adam Green, Akron/Family, Black Dice, Au Revoir Simone, The Television Personalities, Jarvis Cocker and many other luminaries. Live shows often incorporate “low budget videos,” Jeffrey’s large illustrations displayed to accompany certain songs, such as Jeffrey’s educational multi-part “History of Communism” or flights of fancy like “The Creeping Brain.” In 2001 Jeffrey Lewis signed to the venerable Rough Trade Records label (home to The Smiths, The Strokes, and many more alternative legends) and has since released six albums worldwide.
Jeffrey Lewis has been self-publishing a comic book series called “Fuff” since 2004, has lectured around the world on topics such as the “Watchmen” comic book and independently produced music, and in recent years his work has been featured by the History Channel, the New York Times, the Guardian, NPR, and elsewhere.

Lunchtime Show: 12.30 doors