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Jay Reatard

Biography

The Oblivions were the mid-'90s fathers of Memphis' garage rock, but Jay Reatard (born Jay Lindsey), a songwriter who shaped his highly melodic take on the genre in their likeness, was the city's next-generation garage rock torchbearer. How is his music different? It's fun. Like bounce-off-the-walls fun. Shotgun-beers-and-puke-in-the-bushes fun. Sweaty-meat-smelling-basement-rock-and-roll-show fun. He started recording on his own at the age of 15, sending a tape-recorded demo off to the Oblivions-related label, Goner, who eventually signed him. He released a string of singles with Goner -- some as a one-man band called the Reatards, some backed by Memphis musicians -- and began to tour widely in 1998, the same year the Reatards issued their proper debut, Teenage Hate. Over the next few years Lindsey led and contributed to a handful of projects in addition to the Reatards -- the Lost Sounds and the Angry Angels, among others -- and started to work on solo material. His first solo effort, Blood Visions, appeared on the In The Red label in 2006. Two years later, he signed with indie heavyweight Matador, which issued a series of vinyl singles (which were packaged together and sold as compilation discs). Throughout the course of his career, he wrote and toured prolifically. Unfortunately, the music world experienced a great loss when Lindsey, at the young age of 29, passed away on January 13, 2010.
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