Poetry News

Thurston Moore & Daniel Kane in Conversation

By Harriet Staff


At Locus Solus, every New York School fan's favorite blog, a pointer to a recent interview with Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore and every New York School scholar's favorite scholar, Daniel Kane, that has just been published in Postmodern Culture. "In a rich and freewheeling conversation about literature and art that begins and ends with Moore’s 'commitment to poetry,' Moore and Kane discuss everything from conceptual art to the Ramones, Clark Coolidge and Brian Eno, Patti Smith and Jack Spicer." More:

Moore also discusses the importance of 0 to 9, the now-legendary magazine edited by Acconci and Bernadette Mayer:

I think their idea was to interrelate this kind of contemporary New York School writing, these John Ashbery kind of lines that were filled with very artful non-sequiturs and were simultaneously very visual on the page, and then sort of doing things where they were taking pages out of a Daniel Defoe book, or out of the phonebook, and putting these various kinds of pages together, seeing their connectivity, figuring out what that meant, what that could evoke. That was really smart, and so 0-9 subsequently became this kind of infamous poetry magazine. It really did try to explode what could be considered writing.

Kane notes that 0 to 9 was deliberately “staging, however tacitly, an argument with that Frank O’Haraesque ‘I do this, I do that’ style so beloved by second generation New York School poets,” which leads the pair into a discussion of minimalism, which surprisingly triggers an interesting turn in which Moore cites the Ramones as an example of minimalism’s influence:

And the Ramones was this kind of high-concept band that I always suspected were a kind of glam variant of minimalism: the leather jacket and jeans, this uniform look, it’s almost like the Bay City Rollers! (laughs). It was around the same time! When that first Ramones album came out, there was a lot of talk about how this was coming out of minimalism. These are not academics though, these are weirdos from outside the margins who are doing something that is so pure …

When Kane asks “So we can draw a line from, like, Sol LeWitt to the Ramones?” Moore responds:

Yeah! The Sol LeWitt people were responding to the Ramones!

Read it all at Locus Solus. And don't forget 0 to 9: The Complete Magazine.

Originally Published: December 18th, 2015