R. Hell Site Forum Message

a few preliminary words about Bob

Posted by:Richard Hell (‘in forum heading’)
Posted on: 8 Jun 2004
I want to say something about Bob even though it's all really too close now to do it clearly.

Quine was complicated and he went through periods of feuding with everyone he knew. Anybody who was close to him would get fed up with him at times and he was the same way about just about everybody he had a strong relationship with. I don't know why I’m starting this description with this, except that in talking to friends of his in the past few days everybody’s mad at him. I guess that’s natural when somebody kills himself. Everybody’s mad at Bob and he doesn’t give a shit.

I’m kind of stumped about what to say, but I really want to say something. Later I’ll take my shot at trying to get down what was supreme about him as a musician. I mean later on another day. No maybe I have to talk about music. Because really music was absolutely everything to him. It’s where he got almost all his pleasure and where he had about his only hope of doing something he could take pride in (though he seemed to never dream he could reach the level of his idol players, like Miles and Lou Reed). He was into movies (one of the first links we had, before we played together, was the amazement that we’d both discovered Hugo Haas) and books (Nabokov and Burroughs at the top of the list), but when you talked about them with him, as advanced as his taste was, still you couldn’t help picking up that it was ultimately frivolous, because it was music that mattered to him. And that was basically rock and roll from its birth through 1961 or so (with a few very important later-date exceptions like the Velvet Underground, the Stooges, and the Byrds), and jazz from the late forties through Miles Davis’s and his top contemporaries’ (and Eric Dolphy’s and Albert Ayler’s) catalogs. (I have a limited knowledge of the range of jazz he loved, so anyone who can be more accurate about his interests there, please correct me.)

Though Bob, of all the “punk” musicians, was the most musically sophisticated (unless you count Verlaine who’d come in pretty close), as much so as anybody who ever played in a rock and roll band in fact, he still belonged beyond a doubt to the genre if you want to discuss that issue, by virtue of his anger and his musical values. He wasn’t interested in virtuosity but in feeling and invention (and aggression). (He didn’t like “punk” bands though. I can’t think of one pure “punk” band that interested him--neither the Sex Pistols, the Ramones, nor the Clash, for instance. I thought this was a blind spot, considering how he was into roots rockabilly and early Rolling Stones and the Stooges and other related things.) Shit, I’m losing my place and rambling. I want to cut this short and just post it and try to write something more thought through another day.

Anyway, he was very angry but he was also as much of a gentleman as he could possibly bear to be and he made the anger into entertainment by developing a triple reverse humor that took your breath away. He was the funniest guy I ever knew.

I’m going to leave it at that for now. Fuck.

[later addenda:

We've now compiled a collection of Quine material and links at www.richardhell.com/hellnews2004.html.

It lists such as: more information about Quine's jazz preferences and other musical obsessions supplied by Jim Marshall at www.richardhell.com/cgi-bin/forum/showmessage.asp?messageID=6466; an interview with Richard about Bob at Rolling Stone online, www.rollingstone.com/news/story?id=6128328&pageid=rs.Home&pageregion=single1, and a Quine "obituary" by Richard in this week's New York magazine at www.newyorkmetro.com/nymetro/news/people/columns/intelligencer/9310/index.html, as well as links to examples of Quine's playing available free for the listening online.]

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Message thread:

         Robert Quine R.I.P. by The Barman, 6 Jun 2004 (64)
                 Re: Robert Quine by Jonathan, 6 Jun 2004
                 bob by Jonathan Paley, 7 Jun 2004
                 Genuis Lost by Popa Chubby, 7 Jun 2004
                         Bob by Aidan, 9 Jun 2004
                 3 hours of Bob Quine's music by sighmoan, 8 Jun 2004
                         RIP by Bob Collum, 8 Jun 2004
                         Info. re: Robert Quine by Al, 9 Jun 2004
                 Robert Quine by nancy, 8 Jun 2004
                         yup by duck, 8 Jun 2004
                         Quine antecedents by S, 8 Jun 2004
                 the great downtown NY guitarman by Bruce Kronenberg, 8 Jun 2004
                         Hearing Bob by Madam X, 9 Jun 2004
                                 Ivan meets Bob by Antoine, 10 Jun 2004
                 it's true by Roy Suggs, 6 Jun 2004
                         robert quine passing by jaco, 7 Jun 2004
                         I'm so sorry..... by Ginger, 8 Jun 2004
                         a few preliminary words about Bob by Richard Hell, 8 Jun 2004
                                 I'm Sorry!! by marlena, 8 Jun 2004
                                 This is awful. by Robyn, 8 Jun 2004
                                 Sharing a Voidoid Memory by Dom Clemente, 8 Jun 2004
                                         Sharing a Voidoid Memory by DJ Mitchell, 29 Apr 2005
                                                 Zappa's by Dom Clemente, 6 May 2005
                                 Quine by Chris Alias, 10 Jun 2004
                                 Bob Quine by Ian, 10 Jun 2004
                                 Jim Marshall lists Quine's favorites by Richard Hell, 11 Jun 2004
                                         Bob Q. by gaffney, 6 Feb 2005
                                 condolences by Jack Fris, 11 Jun 2004
                                         Robert Quinne by slimedog, 12 Jun 2004
                                 Serendipity - and an R. Hell quote by Riot Nrrrd™, 13 Jun 2004
                                 Robt Quine. by Richard Kopecky, 14 Jun 2004
                         Passing by Mike, 8 Jun 2004
                                 Well put by George, 10 Jun 2004
                         R. Quine by GretchenC, 8 Jun 2004
                         the news is startling... by steve mcavoy, 8 Jun 2004
                                 Steve Mcavoy by Rob Filardo, 10 Jun 2004
                         The Bluest Mask by Patrick, 9 Jun 2004
                 Thanks Bob by Paul, 8 Jun 2004
                 Thank you.... by ECD, 8 Jun 2004
                 All I can say is by Binaoh, 8 Jun 2004
                 Oh,boy!§ by Antoine, 7 Jun 2004
                         robert quine by rich d, 7 Jun 2004
                                 Bob Quine by slimedog, 7 Jun 2004
                 quine by ralph buonagura, 9 Jun 2004
                 Dear Quine by Felipe Lipa Zangrandi, 9 Jun 2004
                 QUINE by chris maguire, 9 Jun 2004
                 Rober Q. by tim, 9 Jun 2004
                 quine with zorn by Markkus Rose, 9 Jun 2004
                         Quine/Zorn recommendations by Maurice Rickard, 9 Jun 2004
                 more bad news by Mike, 9 Jun 2004
                 Deep sense of loss.... by Marco Tonalezzi, 10 Jun 2004
                 Robert Quine by genericbat, 10 Jun 2004
                 Quine Encounters by Tim from Toronto, 10 Jun 2004
                         Quine encounter by Fred Giannelli, 27 Jun 2004
                 RIP by dino galasso, 10 Jun 2004
                 Re: Mr. Quine by Connie, 12 Jun 2004
                 robert quine tribute page by generic, 13 Jun 2004
                 Bob Quine by Susan Beschta/Springfield, 7 Jun 2004
                         rip Robert Quine by glenn, 7 Jun 2004
                 Bob stay with God. by Rodrigo Amadeu, 7 Jun 2004
                         Remembering Bob Quine by Andy Schwartz, 7 Jun 2004
                                 stood alone by tony, 8 Jun 2004
                                         Bob Quine by geraldine fibber, 8 Jun 2004
                                         pilgrimage to quine stomping grounds by markus Rose, 22 Jun 2004
                                                 like he said! by Joe Public, 24 Jun 2004

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