David J on Bauhaus and His Unexpected Bob Dylan Fandom
David J is scheduled to deejay at Lipgloss on Friday, July 31. Born David J. Haskins, David J is perhaps best known to music fans as the bassist and sometime singer in influential post-punk bands Bauhaus and Love and Rockets. Haskins is also an accomplished author whose plays have garnered critical praise and whose 2014 autobiography, Who Killed Mister Moonlight? (Bauhaus, Black
Still an active musician, Haskins has also served as a veritable mentor to musicians he has influenced, including Courtney
Haskins understands what it means to work with younger performers: As a musician in an up-and-coming band in the early 1980s, he had his share of unexpected benefactors, including one musical hero who helped get
“We were sitting in our little area [where there] was an old '50s jukebox, and we were setting up for a shoot,” recalls Haskins. “Someone asked, 'Do you mind if I choose something?' It was Bowie. 'No! Go right ahead.
“I think Tony Scott saw us performing 'Bela Lugosi's Dead' on television for Riverside,” adds Haskins. “He was preparing to make the film, and he called Bowie and
Before forming Bauhaus, Haskins became friends with an artist a handful of years older, Alan Moore, who would go on to be one of the most important comic artists of the '80s and beyond. The two met while involved with a theatrical artist collective in 1978, and have worked together and maintained a friendship over the years.
“I think he's a true genius,” Haskins says of Moore. “I like the way he'll take on a subject and perform an excavation — an artistic, psychic, literary excavation — and he goes underground. He intuits so many different levels of
With his connection to dark music and art, it might come as a surprise to some longtime fans that Haskins is a massive Bob Dylan fan, dating back to his teenage years. But it took a fellow musician to point out any similarity between Haskins's solo work and that of Dylan.
“I've got more Bob Dylan albums than any other artist,” says Haskins. “I was in Berlin recently, and Anton Newcomb from Brian Jonestown Massacre came out to one of my gigs. He's very astute about music, and he made a comment about how it really put him in the mind of Bob Dylan's album Nashville Skyline, the vocals. Since he's said that, I can really hear it, whereas before I wasn't conscious of that.”
“'Lay Lady Lay' was the first thing I ever heard by Bob Dylan,” he continues. “I was on holiday with my parents, being a salty teenager at sixteen years old, and we were at the British seaside. I just insisted on staying in the room. For two
“They all go to the beach, and I was haunting the corridors of this seaside bed-and-breakfast, and I went past one door, and I heard this wonderful music emanating from beyond the door. I was listening at the door, and I was painfully shy at the
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If you'd like to contact me, Tom Murphy, on Twitter, my handle is @simianthinker.
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