I know you may have thought "dude your from Chicago and you gave props to Jan Terri before Wesley Willis?
Fear not dear reader i just wanted a little more space to talk about Mr. Willis.
For those not in the know click here
Wesley was the real deal and i saw him at dozens of shows. If he liked you he would headbutt you and i'll never forget when he saw me at the Expo of the Extreme. He approached me and leaned close to my face and said "say rrra" and i said "rrrraaa' and he whispered "yea,rrrraaa" and lightly headbutt me.
Merry Christmas- Wesley Willis
Below are some of my favorite condolences, stories, and memories of peoples meetings with Wesley Willis from the Jello Biafra run Alternative Tentacles record label
"Wesley wasn't someone I wanted to be friends with- , his songs seemed juvenile and offensive (though I was admittedly charmed by the songs he sung about the things he loved and his friends), he had a reputation for delivering headbutts and I couldn't understand my friends' interest in him.
Then last summer Chris and Kim, his sometimes caretakers, friends and documentarians brought him over and he spent an afternoon in my backyard. He played his keyboard and sang dirty songs so loud I was afraid my neighbors could hear until I bribed him with a snow cone. He threw his head back and laughed with abandon and joy. He headbutted me gently and made me say, "Ra".
That afternoon I came to see him the way my friends Chris and Kim did- as someone who was driven by his need to constantly make music and create, who was mischevious, funny, good hearted and misunderstood."
Michelle M. Baldwin
"after recording a bunch, and then driving to some shows, Wesley was exhasted, so was i. we got up late one day and his medication wore off, he was haveing a hard time. i had to try to drive while holding his hand while he switched from crying, to trying to hit his head, to yelling at those awfull demons, there was no joy ride for the whole ride back to the studio, a few hour ride. i was exhasted, he couldnt be reassured, at least not for long. we get back to the studio i finally got him in bed, he always asked me to tuck him in, so he finally gets in bed, i am so tired, its like 3 or 4 am, i get into the booth at the studio (wes slept on the bed) i lay down on the floor ready for some alone time and rest, and then i hear this noise, like wesley yelling through the glass in the booth's windows, i think, oh shit, he woke up, he is probely yelling at the demons, anyway i get up, trying to be sypathetic, but i am totaly tired and annoyed, i open the door to the studio where wes was still tucked in, facing straight up, not eving listening to what he was saying, i interupt his outburst, and say "wes, its time to sleep!" he turns his head over twards me with a big huge smile, and says "dont be mad zespy, im just singing my favorite loverboy song!" " the kid is hot tonight, oh so hot tonight!" , over and over we sang, lauging our asses off at how silly it was, and forgiving each other for a hard day. we sang and i ran around the studio belting out the lyrics as he lay in bed singing over and over. it was a great realese. we both slept well that night, the hell ride was over. the joy ride had been just around the corner, we just didnt see it. wes tought me patience, and hope, an how to work your fucking ass off. anway i am rambling. i have many stories as does everyone that had him in their life."
"I'll never forget the time I first heard Wes's cover of "Girls on Film". I sat on the floor to my apartment with stereo up as loud as it could go. The walls shook and my cat cowered in the corner, confused and petrified. The best thing about it... my roommate left because of the noise.
Wesley never failed to bring a smile to my face no matter what the situation was. I spent many a night in the dark subways of Boston with my headphones on and "They Threw Me Out of Church" in my ear. That was the only way to survive crowds of screaming red sox fans and drunken college frat boys.
I regret not being able to get into TT the Bear's last time he came to Boston and it saddens me to know I'll never get a friendly headbutt. He'll be sorely missed here on the East Coast as well as the West.
As my friend said, there goes one of the last true punks."
Rock on Wesley
All can be read here