Tribute To Flex
The JJJammers hold the distinction of being the second most important band in the history of the Ted Chain. They joined with Ted to form the legendary Buttocks II/III which held the chain together for 3 years and provided a pattern by which future Ted Chain groups would be molded.
The earlier JJJammers recordings (Original Parts I & II) were primarily avant-garde acoustic covers of Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin tunes. JJJammers Volume 1 and Volume 2 include more original material, better arrangements, and a new electronic-pop sound. Even with the new sound, the avant-garde influences are very clear. Soundtrack to Hell represents the beginning of the Jammers' Devil-Metal Avant-Garde era. Returning to their roots as avant-garde musicians, the Jammers really put the listener's ears to the test with a continuous assault of demonic sounds and wailing guitars on Side 2. Side 1 of the album presents a set of songs that are Devil-Art-Metal at its best. The Jammer's Black Sabbath album continues the Devil-Metal focus of the previous album, and includes several Black Sabbath covers. These covers show J.J.'s rapidly improving guitar technique, and "Little" Dick Beater's rapidly improving production skills. The Jammer's final album, Narrow Escape, takes us away from the previous themes of Satan, and brings us into new territory with the introduction of the Cow People. On this album, the Metal is loud and rancorous like the previous two albums, but there is a new emphasis on instrumentals and animal effects. The haunting cries of the Cow People are particularly effective at helping the listener identify with their plight.
Throughout their illustrious yet short-lived career, the Jammers drew on many literary influences while creating their own unique art form. The "Possession" series of songs featured such literary masterworks as LeFanu's Green Tea and the Bible (most notably Isaiah Chapter 47 and the very fitting Book of Revelation, particularly the bit about the vials and the seat of the beast). This was continued in J.J.'s later work with Sudden Urgence where Emily Dickinson's timeless classic "A Bird Came Down the Walk" was transformed into a Death-Metal anthem. Like Sting of the Police, the Jammers deftly combined literature with music to great effect.
The Jammers are sorely missed, but their music lives on in the hearts and minds of those who have experienced it.
By Jefferson Jackson "J.J." Jammer
More of the history of the JJJammers can be found on the J.J.Jammer Bio page, and in Jack's interview with J.J..
Recorded: 8/15/83 Released: 10/84 Songs: Hey J.J., All Along the Watchtower, Sudden Absence, Heartbreaker, Dazed Elephant, Noises in the Air, Tribute to Sad Attempt, (Side 2), Dazed Confusion, Bang on My Drum, Another Drum Bites the Dust, Unintelligable Trash, Drum Solo. Part 2: Hey J.J., Dazed Confusion, Bang on My Drum, Noises in the Air
Recorded: 11/83 Released: Songs: Willow Hill, Romping Madmen.
Recorded: 11/83 Released: Songs: Hey J.J., Polyester Face, Interstellar Distress, Spellbound, Our Pathetic Government, (Side 2), And the Wind Cries Mary, Lunchroom, Tribute to Flex, Narrow Escape.
Recorded: 3/19/84 Released: Songs: Tribute to Vomit, Morbid Transmutation, Possession III: Deep Subversive Impulse, Washing Machine, (Side 2), Soundtrack to Hell.
Recorded: 3/31/84 Released: Songs: Black Sabbath, Washing Machine, Paranoid, Feedback, Tribute to Insanity, Possession I, (Side 2), Bar-B-Q, Tribute to Gang Bang, Iron Man, N.I.B., Possession II (Life Without a Soul).
Recorded: 4/84-8/10/84 Released: 8/12/84 Songs: Narrow Escape, Tribute to Xomax, Revenge of the Cow People, Recovery of the Last Axe, Vision of Two Sticks, Possession IV: The Burial, (Side 2), Cow People: Rebuilding of the Temple, Polyester Face.