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guest 01.22.2017 10:39 PM

RIP Jaki Liebezeit
farewell to one of the finest drummers to ever walk the earth

post yr can jams

Bytor Peltor 01.22.2017 11:29 PM

Sad news indeed!

The Pitchfork article said he passed away from "sudden pneumonia." I've never even heard this term before??

PLips 01.22.2017 11:42 PM

It's a mnemonic device

stu666 01.23.2017 02:37 AM

R.I.P :(

Toilet & Bowels 01.23.2017 03:53 AM

Yep sad. William Onyeabor died last week too

greenlight 01.23.2017 03:38 PM


Rob Instigator 01.23.2017 04:06 PM

Gonna have to spin my CAN tonight.

Severian 01.23.2017 04:40 PM

Very sad. Such a talent.

I kind of hate these threads because saying ANYTHING feels kind of silly, but I will absolutely be listening to Future Days on my way home tonight.

GravitySlips 01.23.2017 05:18 PM

My favourite drummer. I'd already started playing drums by the time I first heard Can, but this guy -- what a player. Changed a lot about how I view the instrument, and the band in general were a game changer.


pepper_green 01.23.2017 06:10 PM

fine fine drummer that man was. see "Vitamin C" for example. sort of similar to "Mushroom" too.

yea, he knew how to pop and lock it. RIP!

pepper_green 01.23.2017 07:56 PM


Originally Posted by guest

i love Turtles Have Short Legs!!! yes, drumming is out of the world!

Bertrand 01.24.2017 10:57 AM

I was surprised to hear the news on the radio. I didn't expect them to do an almost lenghty bit about a drummer from a band that never got aired that much.
That was really cool from these guys to say how important he had been.

The Soup Nazi 01.24.2017 05:31 PM

Here we go again. Mother-FUCK. Yes, I know people are aging,
, but that doesn't mitigate the pain.

Goodbye, Jaki.

Savage Clone 01.24.2017 05:32 PM

Best, tireless man machine.
RIP man.

The Soup Nazi 01.25.2017 05:35 PM

The Soup Nazi 01.26.2017 04:59 PM

By the way, as stu666 reported back in November, Jaki was supposed to perform in "The Can Project" with Thurston on April 8. :(


Tour name: The Can Project

Founding member Irmin Schmidt premieres an orchestral reinterpretation of classic Can material alongside new work with the London Symphony Orchestra, before an all-star band of former Can members and long-time admirers pay tribute to their pioneering music.

Assembling their music through improvisation and studio editing, Can’s writing process resembled collage. Tonight, Can founder Irmin Schmidt takes that approach to their entire oeuvre, conducting the world premiere of his piece An homage to Can, written with Gregor Schwellenbach, which weaves together quotations and abstractions of some of the band’s most renowned pieces.

After an extended interval screening of Can’s 1972 performance at Cologne Sporthalle, the second half of the show brings together a supergroup led by Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth), featuring ex-Can drummer Jaki Liebezeit, as well as Can’s first singer Malcolm Mooney, realising and reinterpreting the band’s music.

Laying the foundations of what came to be known as Krautrock, Can became one of the most influential avant-rock groups of all time, and echoes of their work is audible in everything from Joy Division, to Radiohead, to Kanye West. Can combined the deconstructed rock’n’roll of The Velvet Underground, the determined rhythmic propulsion of Sly & the Family Stone, and the appetite for studio experimentation of their former teacher Karlheinz Stockhausen to create a new kind of rock music – something avant-garde and groovy, both wildly experimental and utterly compelling.

The show will be preceded by a Q&A with Rob Young, author of a new book devoted to Can, published by Faber & Faber – one-part biography, one part memoir by Schmidt himself.

The Soup Nazi 02.01.2017 03:55 PM

From The Wire:


Jaki Liebezeit 1938–2017: Rob Young recalls time spent with the iron-willed drummer
The Wire's Rob Young, author of the forthcoming biography of the legendary German rockers Can, remembers their late founder member


I first met Jaki Liebezeit in the Can studio itself while researching my cover story on Can for The Wire 158 (April 1997). He was friendly but reserved in conversation, with minimal recall of events more than 25 years ago. The bags under his eyes spoke of countless long nights, but the eyes themselves were wide and fully alert. He grew enthusiastic when he spoke of his current projects: a collaboration with the Cologne experimental musician Pluramon (aka Markus Schmickler), his Drums Off Chaos percussion collective, and his plans to write a book detailing his ongoing research into the mysteries of rhythm. It was the now, and the way ahead, that held Jaki’s fascination. Like everyone associated with Can, he was entirely unsentimental about the past. Though they have periodically revitalised their recorded catalogue and promoted the group in various ways, their surviving members never took the heritage route. No group called Can ever played live after May 1977; but they have remained on reasonably good terms with each other ever since they ceased to be a regularly functioning outfit.

Over the years I interviewed him several times and ran into him here and there – an electronic music festival in Istanbul where he was playing in Burnt Friedman’s band; a strange late night dinner at the Groucho Club with other Can members; and finally in Cologne in May last year while I was doing a final round of interviews for my forthcoming Can biography. He always had a friendly welcome and a wide, mischievous smile. He seemed to take longer to think in English and conversations could be stumbling at times; although, just when he had lapsed into uncomfortable silence and you felt he would really rather wrap this up, that smile would suddenly erupt on his face and he would burst out with a joke or a funny recollection – the live date in Taunton where the whole venue was on some collective cider-fuelled rampage, or the ‘Bradford crackle’ that plagued the PA system like a ghost in the machine.

While he would dutifully trot out his various war stories of studio struggles and scuzzy live venues, there was clearly a certain discomfort, and even impatience, with the mental task of looking back. When I spent a long afternoon with him in his rehearsal space/percussion workshop in Cologne in May last year, the memory seemed to be failing him even further about many details relating to Can itself. What he did rhapsodise about was the idyllic life he spent in the early 1960s in Barcelona and the Balearics, jobbing as a jazz drummer for blind Catalonian pianist Tete Montoliu and touring musicians passing through, living a simple but sunkissed life, taking each day as it came. Under the quietness lurked an iron will. All his colleagues remembered the stubborn studio conflicts, the dug-in heels over a mix or an edit, the impatience with multiple takes and multi-tracks. But whenever they talked about this, it was always with affection. They knew and trusted Jaki’s instincts and knew it as a vital check and balance.

Can was an anarchic democracy and everyone who joined it had sacrificed another, surer path to be there. Jaki spent the 60s in Manfred Schoof’s Quintet, a sleek modernist freedom unit which toured all over Europe. The group even recorded an avant garde composition by Bernd Alois Zimmermann. When Can keyboardist Irmin Schmidt called him up in 1968, asking if he could recommend a drummer for a new contemporary music group he was assembling, Jaki surely heard the sound of a new gate opening. After all, as Zimmermann had said: “If there has ever been an auspicious time for the meeting between jazz and art music as it has been understood till now, that time is now.” His drumming was monotonous but not mindless. His skins were tuned and his wrists tuned even finer. The patterns he span with his more recent groups such as Club Off Chaos, Burnt Friedman’s Secret Rhythms project and his duo with Faust’s Hans-Joachim Irmler were intricate and intriguing, sensuous and sidereal. Just when you thought you’d latched on to the one, the one seemed to slide a click to the right on the grid, and you’d have to reconstruct the pulse afresh in your head. Jaki heard rhythms no one else could. Were four limbs enough?

After a long chat in May last year he kindly drove me back to my hotel behind Cologne train station, and pointed out the building where he and Can’s first vocalist Malcolm Mooney shared a flat back in 1969. I genuinely think he achieved a kind of inner peace and happiness in these last years, glad and yet slightly bewildered to be listed among the world's greatest drummers in various international polls and magazine surveys, and to be passing his knowledge and skills on to others. Apparently he had been looking forward to performing with Mooney and Thurston Moore at London’s Barbican this April, and had been urging Can’s management to book him in for any other gigs that came up, only not the USA “as long as they have that idiot up there”.

I will miss you Jaki, but I will walk to your rhythms for the rest of my life.

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