David Berman: "Joos are over"

Live in IowaIn a post on the Drag City forums, David Berman calls an end to his Silver Jews and Bids his Well-Wishers Adieu:

I guess I am moving over to another category. Screenwriting or Muckraking. I’ve got to move on. Can’t be like all the careerists doncha know. I’m forty two and I know what to do. I’m a writer, see?

Cassie is taking it the hardest. She’s a fan and a player but she sees how happy i am with the decision. I always said we would stop before we got bad. If I continue to record I might accidentally write the answer song to Shiny Happy People. What, you thought I was going to hang on to the bitter end like Marybeth Hamilton?

Billboard authenticated the post with Berman’s publicist. Sad news, but do you believe him? Who’s more likely to stop making music: Berman or Ryan Adams?

Also, who knew his dad was such a royal fuckhead?


Silver Jews – “Strange Victory, Strange Defeat” from Lookout Mountain, Lookout Sea.

Silver Jews – “I’m Getting Back Into Getting Back Into You” from Tanglewood Numbers.

Silver Jews: web, myspace, wiki, label.

8 thoughts on “David Berman: "Joos are over"”

  1. holy shit! rick berman is his dad?!?!?!

    he’s evil incarnate. he’s the embodiment of all the unjust that embodies capitalism over the past several decades. wow….

    i can’t even begin to think about how much of a head fuck it must have been to have him as his dad. twisted.

  2. Oh no. “This winter I decided the SJs were too small of a force to ever come close to undoing a millionth of the harm he has caused.”

    What a terrible way to feel — both that it was up to you to undo bad stuff your father did and that you weren’t able to. But it’s not true! I don’t know who Rick Berman is and I trust David’s statements but the affirmative vision and cracked honesty of the Silver Jews has made life more bearable for a lot of us. I know it’s helped me through some very dark times. And I know it’s done the same for other people. It grieves me to think David doesn’t know or believe that is important.

  3. You know, for a while I’ve wondered why I never wrote a real article about the Joos for Glono. It’s time! A career retrospective.

    Thanks for the nudge, guys.

  4. I would look forward to that!

    What a crazy wrinkle; quite story, really. The sins of the father weighing on the son are nothing to sneeze at, and Berman’s at a point in his life where he can’t just brush that off–especially as he’s embracing a religious worldview and trying to be disciplined about it. Music can only go so far toward that, particularly when you are as “limited” musically as Berman. You gotta respect that–that’s a real artist, right there.

    I love the Silver Jews (some records more than others, naturally) but I think you get to a place where you’ve said all you need to say through a certain vehicle. Let’s celebrate the Joos while being happy for this turn in his life, and hope we get to enjoy his writing in a new form.

  5. He’s also a wonderful poet. His book Actual Air is great and got serious critical attention. He’ll probably go back to poetry, maybe other kinds of writing.

    DCB forever.

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