Magazine tributes

It took a while for the main music mags to react to Don’s death because of their advanced editorial deadlines. Here are some of them that have produced tributes of significance:

Record Collector #385 February 2011

In their ‘Not forgotten’ obituary section Kris Needs (former Zigzag editor) has written a very good piece. It is only one page but it packs a lot in

The Word #96 February 2011

An eight page spread, ‘A fish out of water’, that has some good points with Mark Ellen looking at his art as well as his music but also disappoints (the David Hepworth piece) by perpetuating a few myths:

  • David Hepworth – Mirror man: the psychedelic curmudgeon struggling to make music
  • Mark Ellen – Invisible man: the mysterious missing 28 years of the artist Don van Vliet

The Wire #324 February 2011

Under the headlines of ‘Strictly personal tributes’ and ‘Don the revelator’ The Wire had an interesting mix of articles which featured:

  • Richard Henderson – Desert rat
  • Brian Morton – American friend
  • Savage Pencil – House call (full page cartoon)
  • Gary Lucas – Dark carnival
  • Mike Barnes – Booglarized wonderland
  • Byron Coley – Beefheart (poem)

Uncut #166 March 2011

A well illustrated seven page piece entitled ‘Captain Beefheart, American Visionary 1941-2010

  • David Cavanagh – Introduction
  • Ian MacDonald – reprint of interview with Don for New Musical Express, 14 April 1973
  • Michael Bonner – 2011 interview with John French

Mojo #208 March 2011

For my money this is the best of the bunch. An excellent 10 page illustrated feature with Mike Barnes excelling yet again:

  • Mike Barnes – The black rider
  • P J Harvey – Like listening to the truth
  • David Fricke – Fast & bulbous – encounters with the good Captain
  • Mark Paytress – Booglarize! Captain Beefheart’s key recordings
  • Jack White – Epitaph for Don van Vliet (poem)

Classic Rock March 2011

Their tribute was to reprint in full the great Lester Bangs article from 1980 – ‘Captain Beefheart’s far cry’ complete with photos.

If anyone knows of any other decent tributes in music mags please let me know. I’d also be very interested to know if any art journals have carried anything.


  1. An article by Mike Barnes appeared in the last german "Rolling Stone" issue. I guess its the german translation of one of his other articles.

  2. Ah yes, I seem to have missed Rolling Stone … but that's probably because I haven't read it for many years!

  3. Yeah, there was a one-page piece by David Fricke in the US Rolling Stone (with Jimmy Fallon on the cover: january 20th 2011 edition). Also, NME did a nice tribute in their issue of 08-01-2011 (cover: The Vaccines). T

  4. Record Collector have a 1 page career overview, think it's titled 'We salute you, Captain Beefheart'.

  5. hi was wondering if anyone has any scans of any of these articles as wasnt as able to read them ? thanks!

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