John Lurie

John Lurie ( born December 14, 1952 in Worcester, Massachusetts) is an American composer, musician, actor, film and music producer as well as a painter and writer.

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Life and work

Music and Film

Lurie founded in 1978 with his brother Evan Lurie in New York, the group The Lounge Lizards, in which he played alto and soprano saxophone. Lurie coined the term fake jazz to describe the music of the Lounge Lizards.

In the early 1980s he played in the first three films of Jim Jarmusch, for which he also composed the film music: Permanent Vacation, Stranger than Paradise, Down by Law. At the latest by Stranger than Paradise he had with his laconic cool appearance with Borsalino fedora and old suit over Downtown New York beyond cult status.

For the series Fishing with John from the early 1990s invited Lurie famous colleagues to fish, even though he (as subtitles ) had no idea of ​​the fish itself. Also present were Willem Dafoe, Matt Dillon, Dennis Hopper, Jim Jarmusch and Tom Waits.

John Lurie founded in 1998 with " Strange & Beautiful Music " his own music label and released their previous studio album of the Lounge Lizards, Queen of All Ears and the soundtrack to Fishing with John. 1999 be here Marvin Pontiac project published the posthumous " legacy " of African- Jewish blues musician. The figure of Marvin Pontiac and all the songs were created by Lurie himself. Lounge Lizards musicians such as Marc Ribot and Billy Martin helped with the recordings, even Eszter Balint, his team-mate from Stranger than Paradise is heard on the album (" Small Car" ).


Lurie retired after infection with Lyme disease more frequently in 1994 and has been painting since that time. He puts his naive images since 2004, including New York, Munich and Amsterdam, as well as 2012 in Berlin and published in 2007 two books: Learn to Draw with drawings from the publisher Walther König and A Fine Example of Art at powerhouse, in which he as a painter as well as first appears as an author easier to short texts. Lurie paints basically been around since the 70s. But only the Lyme disease led him to focus on this art form ( " It was like: Ok I am putting my soul into this"). He began with pencil drawings and works with watercolor and oil. Lurie sees his paintings as a natural extension of his painting in childhood and generally relates positively to the " childlike " approach to art. The Museum of Modern Art has added some of his works in its permanent collection.

Open Letter

Lately Lurie fighting intensified for the recall of an article about him that appeared in the widely read The New Yorker in 2010. In October 2012, he wrote an open letter and sent it to the magazine. The signature list displays next to friends and acquaintances also several personalities from the arts and culture scene. The article has supposedly fueled an already existing stalking situation, since it is partially based on false statements of Stalkers. A reaction on the part of the blade is not made.

For the first time new appearance in public

Lurie is taking tentative steps recently returned to the public as early January 2013 at a public discussion on the occasion of the broadcast of his " Fishing with John " - project. A new CD with previously unreleased recordings since January 2014 trade.

Filmography (selection)

Discography (selection)