Joe Kafka: There was a physicality about indie pop in the late-80s in the USA that will never be matched again, that could scarcely be imagined these days. The low-fi tape hiss, the requited fanzine kiss, the handwritten hit and miss. Joe Kafka, four design school grads from Columbus, Ohio, took that to another level, exchanging songs on a Fostex X-15 Multitracker cassette recorder that circulated like a dog-eared library book. Songs about decade-old memories from Cincinnati and Mount Vernon (“one of Ohio’s Best Home Towns”), filtered through the blur of college. They formed a community, population four, that became a community, population Beatkit Tapes, population Columbus, population K Records mailing list, population me, and now you. Not measured by numbers but by unpremeditated brilliance, by glorious imperfection, by lost and found love.
Each order for the Too Young for the Blues CD comes with a Joe Kafka digital lyric booklet.
Vocals - Darick Chamberlin
Vocals, Bass, Acoustic Guitar – Mike Washer
Vocals, Drums, Harmonica, Xylophone – Dave Butler
Vocals, Guitar – Shawn Wolfe
Backing Vocals – Erin Dennis (track 5), John Walsh (track 13)
Drum Machine – Mark Blubaugh (track 4)
Lead Guitar – Mark Wolfe (track 11)
Tracks 8, 21 and 25 previously appeared on the "Joe Kafka" cassette (1987)
Tracks 1, 9-10 and 19-20 previously appeared on the "Pretty Cold" cassette (1987)
Track 24 previously appeared on the "Bionic Cats" compilation cassette (1987)
Tracks 2, 5-7, 11-12 and 15-17 previously appeared on the "Sock Minkey" cassette (1988)
Tracks 3, 13-14, 18 and 22-23 previously appeared on the "Rejoice" cassette (1989)
Track 4 previously unreleased
Remastered by Michael Train
Design by Shawn Wolfe
Tray inlay painting by Michael Washer
"I ran Harriet Records between 1989 and 1998 out of Cambridge, MA. I released 10 CDs (most of which are available here) and 45 singles. There are 7 "new" releases so far, most recently by The Rosslyns (early 90s pop from Essex) and Joe Kafka (mid-80s low-fi brilliance from Columbus)."
-- Tim Alborn
The Rosslyns, All We Ever Did Was Try (Harriet Records) CD