Chris Knox Profile

Gary Steel
13 May 2013

Where to start with Chris Knox? He’s one hell of an entity. This is where we’ll start with Chris Knox: It’s impossible to imagine New Zealand cultural life without his contribution to it.

What’s hard about all this is that it’s too easy to make this appreciation sound like an obituary – existing entirely in the past tense – when it’s actually not like that. Chris Knox had a stroke in 2009, and no-one emerges from a serious stroke exactly the way they were before. Chris acknowledged that in a wordless interview I conducted with him a year after the stroke: I’m still in here, he said, I’m still me, but...

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Radio with Pictures - A Pointless Exercise with Tall Dwarfs, 1981
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Chris Knox supporting Blondie, France, 1998
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Chris Knox interview: 4-track and Flying Nun Pt.4
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Chris Knox @ Fast Forward II 1995
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Chris Knox in 2005
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Chris in his back yard
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Chris Knox at the Rumba Bar, 1982
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ScreenTalk interview with Chris Knox
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Chris Knox, mid 1980s
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Chris Knox's Beat album, released by Flying Nun in 2000. It was his final album for the label he had helped create.
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Chris Knox cartoon for Mark Everton's Soundcheck column, 1984/5
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A Chris Knox self portrait
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Toy Love interview, The South Tonight, 1980
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Chris Knox at the Nitpicker's Picnic, 1985
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Face Of Fashion
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Not Given Lightly
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Half Man, Half Mole
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Knoxious (Chris Knox & The Rackets) - Gagarin
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Chris Knox with Debbie Harry and Chris Stein after Chris supported Blondie, Paris, 1998
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Get A Life
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Polyfoto Duck Shaped Pain & "Gum" from 1993
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Songs Of You & Me, 1995
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Chris Knox, 1989
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The legendary 4-track studio at Summer St, 1984
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Chris Knox with the legendary TEAC. Doug Hood is in the mirror
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Chris Knox performing in the 1980s
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Summer St, Auckland 1984
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Chris Knox Interview: 4-track and Flying Nun Pt.3
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Songs For Cleaning Guppies, 1982
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An unpublished Chris Knox cartoon from 1984/85, created for Mark Everton's Listener Soundcheck column.
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One Fell Swoop
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Chris Knox Interview: 4-track and Flying Nun Pt.1
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Chris Knox at New Plymouth's Bowl Of Brooklands, January 1982
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Chris Knox, 1990
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Chris Knox's cover for Forced Exposure magazine, 1993
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Inside Story
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Not Given Lightly - Interview and Performance, November 1997
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Chris Knox cartoon for Mark Everton's Soundcheck column, 1984/5
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Chris Knox at Auckland's Windsor Castle one Saturday afternoon in March 1980, with assorted members of The Androidss and The Spelling Mistakes' Julian Hanson
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Chris Knox and Rackets - Squeeze (live at the Kings Arms, 2010)
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Chris Knox Interview: 4-track and Flying Nun Pt.2
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The original photo used on the cover of the vinyl version of 1989's Seizure album
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A self portrait
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Chris Knox in a promo shot for the Beat album, 2000
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Chris Knox and The Nothing at Laneway, Auckland, 1 February 2010, with Shayne Carter on guitar, Roy Martyn on bass and Stefan Neville on drums
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Interview with Chris Knox, 20 April 1995. Directed by Ross Cunningham.
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Trivia:

Within weeks of his stroke, plans were afoot for a benefit album, Stroke: Songs For Chris Knox. It was a moving tribute, and an exposition of just how great so many of his songs are, as interpreted by the likes of Bill Callahan (Smog), Yo La Tengo, The Mountain Goats, Will Oldham and locals like Don McGlashan.

Knox has appeared several times at gigs since his stroke, including the inaugural Laneways festival in 2010 (with The Nothing) and at the launch of a Toy Love vinyl release at Real Groovy. His vocals are wordless, but hey, how many vocalists can you understand, anyway?

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