Posted in music on May 25, 2009

"We are profoundly saddened to report that our friend died in his sleep [Sataurday] night. Jay was a beautiful human being who will be missed." [Undertow Music Collective]
As the LA Times points out, Undertow released Jay Bennett's 2002 solo album, "Palace at 4 am (Part I)."
In the late '80s, Bennett founded the rock band Titanic Love Affair in Urbana, Ill., which lasted into the mid-'90s. He was best known for his seven years in adventurous rock act Wilco. Bennett split from the Chicago-based group in 2001, and since his departure had been pursuing a solo career, as well as operating Pieholden Suite Sound - named after a song on Wilco's 1999 album "Summerteeth" -- in Champaign , Ill.

Bennett released the solo effort "Whatever Happened I Apologize" via the Web late last year, and reported at that time that he was pursuing "another" master's degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Yet it was Bennett's time in Wilco that won him the most acclaim.

He had a not-so-amicable split from the band in 2001, which was documented in the 2002 film "I Am Trying to Break Your Heart" and Greg Kot's book "Wilco: Learning How to Die." He did, however, play a major role in the band as a writer, producer and musician. The orchestrated pop of "Summerteeth" further stripped Wilco of its country-rock roots, and 2002's "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" saw the band move into more atmospheric territory.

Bennett was asked to leave the group before "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" was released, and his relationship with Wilco leader Jeff Tweedy remained strained. In early May of this year, Bennett filed suit against his former band mate for breach of contract stemming from his participation in "I Am Trying to Break Your Heart." Bennett was seeking damages in excess of $50,000, according to court papers. [LA Times]

Videos below...

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Comments (59)

i'd hit it

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 9:10 PM

Long live Tweedy

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 9:12 PM

i'd hit it,too.haha

Posted by links of london | May 25, 2009 9:35 PM

Wilco sucks

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 9:36 PM

the man's dead, show some respect

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 9:39 PM

why do we have to respect every dead guy? Wilco sucked with him, and they'll suck without him.

Posted by Tweedy | May 25, 2009 9:42 PM

you'll understand when you're older.

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 9:45 PM

rest in peace

and thank you

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 9:51 PM

RIP Jay. You were such a weird dude, but your talents were truly unique and plentiful. Sadly, if the singer for the crystal stilts was killed tomorrow he'd get more reverence, but the fact remains that you were a pioneer with talent to spare. RIP

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 10:00 PM

tweedy poisoned him with cyanide, he ain't giving him 50K

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 10:15 PM

you guys with your smartass comments are a bunch of fucks...This guy was part of some very important albums with a very good band. He had it tough post-wilco.

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 10:20 PM

Brooklyn Vegan: A place to troll

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 10:20 PM

Wilco - Jay = Lame!

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 11:02 PM

I'm saddened by the loss of Jay Bennett. He was a truly unique and talented musician. He brought so much to Wilco and their music. I really missed him after he left. I'm sure Tweedy will always be haunted knowing that Jay left this world before they resolved their differences. May Jay rest in peace.

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 11:21 PM

wow..
rip jay.

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 11:38 PM

RIP

ignorant yet sincere question: can anyone sum up what he did and what he contributed to Wilco? were there any specific songs he wrote? (or "influenced"?) It seems clear he and his music meant a lot to many people, and I know his name from the Wilco movie, but I don't know any of his music--what will he be remembered by?

again, RIP.

Posted by Anonymous | May 25, 2009 11:51 PM

@10:00

What's this? The lead singer of Crystal Stilts died?!

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 12:14 AM

Jay was a hugely and important musical presence who's guidance crafted YHF. The world will mourn the loss of the music we won't hear from him.

RIP

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 12:16 AM

lesson is dont act like a dick while you are alive, so when you die people will say more nice things about you.

poetic justice or divine retribution, take it however you will. I want to see you get sued by somebody for "at least 50 thousand" in damages and how you'd like that.

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 12:26 AM

@11:51

jay joined the band before they came out with being there in 1996, and played on that. he contributed a lot more to mermaid avenue and summerteeth (heavily) in the late 90s, and helped write a lot of yankee hotel foxtrot, but it is unclear how much of the YHF production is his and how much is jim orourkes.

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 12:26 AM

Tweedy fucked him over to death.

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 12:55 AM

http://feeds2.feedburner.com/countryfeedback

episode 150 from this morning is for jay.

xo

Posted by Jeffory Hylton Simmons | May 26, 2009 1:04 AM

you shall be missed, sir.

Posted by Peter | May 26, 2009 1:31 AM

fucking lame

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 7:11 AM

Jay Bennett helped Wilco get where they are. I appreciate his efforts in shaping the first few albums and got to see Wilco live with Bennett which was a great show! RIP Jay Bennett!

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 7:13 AM

Jay was great with Wilco - They are great without him as well.

RIP

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 9:44 AM

What a fantastic musician and performer. You will be missed Jay....

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 9:56 AM

The average reader of BV appears to conceive of the comments column as a place to outwit the dimwits. In other words, highschool has never been so much fun as it is sitting at home trying to out-clever a bunch of meatheads. "I'd hit it." Yes you would, you stupid meathead.

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 10:01 AM

this site sucks. what a bunch of puny little pricks on here. Shameful

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 10:41 AM

9:44 you are correct

Posted by Deb | May 26, 2009 12:13 PM

Bennett contributed significantly to arguably Wilco's 3 best record run, many of their best songs, and effectively ended the alt-rock musings of Uncle Tupelo.

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 1:52 PM

Play him off, Keyboard Cat.

Posted by Anonymous | May 26, 2009 4:38 PM

The site is fine. Just don't read the comments.

The put downs of Jay Bennett just proves that point.
It is very sad that you can't even show respect for a special musician and wonderful person.

Posted by g.e. | May 26, 2009 6:26 PM

G.E.?!? You bring good things to life! WHY CAN'T YOU BRING JAY BENNETT BACK FROM THE DEAD, THEN?!?

Posted by Crosseyed Sniper | May 26, 2009 7:03 PM

nothing wrong with the site. some people have intelligent, insightful and/or witty things to say. at the opposite end are the morons and nitwits. good sample of how people think about things. this is what democracy looks like.

some talk about showing respect for the Dead. wouldn't it be great if we could show respect for each other while we're still alive as well?

Posted by god | May 26, 2009 7:33 PM

^
STFU, hippie!

Posted by Anonymous | May 27, 2009 12:19 AM

^

have another drink, you retarded moron douche!

Posted by Anonymous | May 27, 2009 11:26 AM

I'm sorry to hear the news.

Posted by anonymouse | May 27, 2009 2:25 PM

To 11:51 and 12:26:

All that Jim O'Rourke did was mix Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, from what I understand. Here's everything Jay did on it:

http://www.gloriousnoise.com/?pg=bennettyhf.php

Posted by Philip | May 28, 2009 1:45 PM

Ras Trent!

Posted by Anonymous | May 29, 2009 11:51 PM

QUOTE: "why do we have to respect every dead guy? Wilco sucked with him, and they'll suck without him"

Answer to stupid question: You don't have to respect every dead guy, dummy.

Posted by Anonymous | June 9, 2009 7:17 AM

have another drink, you retarded moron douche!

Posted by tiffany | July 7, 2009 9:22 PM

It was a very nice idea! Just wanna say thank you for the information you have shared. Just continue writing this kind of post. I will be your loyal reader. Thanks again.

Posted by tiffanys | July 13, 2009 2:25 AM

Thanks for sharing informations.Looking forward to more stuff.

Posted by 乐士典 | August 6, 2009 2:44 AM

Didn't know there were many Jay Bennett fans... may his soul rest in peace. At least God was merciful to him by letting him go without suffering...

Posted by diabetics | August 8, 2009 1:49 AM

Love the videos. Thanks!

Posted by Sell Gold | September 24, 2009 6:33 AM

Just googled Jay and found this - I had no idea he'd passed on. Truly a tragedy. I missed the Wilco bandwagon until I heard Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, and have loved their music ever since.

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Posted by acaros | November 14, 2009 1:39 PM

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Posted by Add Link | November 29, 2009 12:41 PM

nice stuff.

Posted by free links | November 29, 2009 12:41 PM

He will be miss him. RIP.

Posted by e-cigarettes | December 6, 2009 6:49 PM

Had never really heard of him, but from what I see he had a lot of talent. Rest in peace & my thoughts are with his family & friends.

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Posted by Add Link | December 30, 2009 12:02 PM

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