It’s pretty much impossible to choose my favourite zine since I have such a wide range, from entirely illustrated to entirely text to something inbetween, This zine is the one I normally pick out if I want to show someone what a zine can be. If you have any preconceived ideas about zines, this will likely break them into tiny pieces, and if you’ve never seen a zine before it will open your mind to all the possibilities.
Easy Pieces is a series of zines by Jon Jordan, a writer, illustrator and musician who I first met, as many did, when he worked for a music PR company in London. He used to send me awesome records to review and some actually interesting press releases, some of which I still have somewhere.
Anyway, as you can see, Easy Pieces was not your average A5 photocopied zines. Each issue was printed in a different and exciting way (I have 3 others to show you). This was the first one I owned though, and the most elaborate. It’s a bit bigger than A4 size and opens up to reveal two A4 stapled booklets that are interleafed so you open one page in one direction and the next in the other direction. The more you look at it, the more you realise just how much thought has been put into organising the content so it reveals itself as you turn the pages. All the more amazing since the whole thing is hand-drawn and lettered. I can’t even begin to think how he planned this.
Content-wise, it’s got a lovely mix of reviews, features and comment, all with related drawings whether of band members, record sleeves or just random cool stuff. Looking through it all now, I’m realising how long it’s been since I read this zine but it’s bringing back lots of memories – Jon’s writings and drawings of Mogwai were one of the main inspirations behind the Mogwai Artzine, a project I curated of art and writing about Mogwai. Jon did me an awesome illustration for it (old skool website alert – last updated 2001!) which I really must put on my wall again. There was even an Artzine 2 last year organised by diskant friends Brightlight.
Anyway, I have no idea what Jon’s up to these days – he did some great record sleeve artwork too. I hope he’s still well and drawing great things.
This is part of a series of posts about my epic zine collection – I’ve been collecting zines for the last 20 years and I plan to write about all of them eventually. You can find all the zine posts under My Epic Zine Collection.