Former Melody Maker journalist and man responsible for (among other things) bringing grunge and Guided by Voices to the United Kingdom. Also recorded three memorable singles under the name The Legend! for the Creation and Sub Pop labels. Now resides in Melbourne and writes for conservative local newspaper The Age.

Everett True's real name, by the way, is Jerry Thackeray, and he also spent some time in Seattle as music editor for the Stranger, possibly inspiring more hate-letters than any other Stranger staff member. Famous for his boastful belief that Nirvana's success in the UK was a product of his oh-so-discerning, impeccable taste.

Whether one likes Everett's writing or not, it is noteworthy for a number of reasons. He forces the intelligent reader to question the basis of rock journalism (though perhaps it is not so much Everett, per se, but the jarring contrast of seeing traditional American journalism side by side with a member of the notorious British music press). The reader is forced to confront the notion that the purpose of rock journalism is not to inform readers, or any other purpose you could name except to sell papers (or ads, or what have you -- generate revenue, is the point).

Everett wrote remarkably, unabashedly self centered prose (during his tenure at the Stranger, which is admittedly most of my exposure to his writing), in pieces like "Everett chats with himself about the Go-Gos", or "DAYS AND NIGHTS OF NOSTALGIA : Everett True's Diary of Change, Grunge, and Shameful Self-Promotion". It is and was ridiculous, maddening, sensationalistic... and entertaining.

Unknown to many, the journalist Everett True took his name from the protagonist of turn-of-the-century comic strip The Outbursts of Everett True.

The fictional Everett was a rotund, bowler-hatted clerk who could be sparked into fits of psychopathic anger by the most mundane things. Each week, he would come into contact with a different minor annoyance and respond with physical or verbal abuse.

Given that Everett's victims were often deeply unpleasant themselves, he was usually portrayed as something of a hero, the only person with the guts to actually stand up to those who irritate the majority of people. His creators did recognise his monstrousness, however, and he did occasionally come a cropper.

People attacked by Everett include:

  • An acquaintance who made the mistake of calling him "Ev" instead of "Mister True". (punched in the face)
  • A passerby who lauged when Everett slipped on ice. (picked up and dropped onto the ice)
  • An unhelpful policeman. (beaten with his own truncheon)
  • Two lovers canoodling in public. (hosed down with water)
  • A man who tied up a horse in driving snow. (tied up himself while his horse was led away to a barn)
  • A commuter who refused to move so that people could step off a tram. (head slammed into cobbles)
  • An annoying fishing quide who gave useless information. (smashed over the back of the head with an oar)
  • A con-man. (tossed into the floor like a javelin)

As well as two children, Everett has a wife who frequently beats and yells him into submission - the only person in the world capable of doing so.

Sources: - Scanned samples of the comic - A potted history of Everett True - An interview with Tony Isabella (near the bottom)

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