Earlier this year, a handsome hardcover volume entered the world, containing a history of Dinosaur Jr. Much like the oral history of Galaxie 500 released last year, this gives the group the deluxe treatment, incorporating an oral history (part of which can be read at Spin), photos of the band live and in repose, flyers, and cover art. Of the ephemera, images of a trenchcoat-clad Matt Dillon directing the video for “Get Me” stands as a particular highlight. To learn more about how the book had come together, I reached out to editor Russell Beecher via email.
Where did the idea to do this book first come from?
From me. I’ve been a fan of the band for many years and felt that their story needed to be told.
What came first: the assembly of photos, flyers, and other ephemera or the remembrances from band members and friends?
There was no real order to how it came together; it’s a case of working on everything all the time.
Where did the photos and flyers come from? Were any of them harder to find than others?
Many of the photos came from two old friends of the band; Jon Fetler and Jens Jurgensen. Jon also supplied a lot of the flyers, as did other old friends of the band from way back before they were even Dinosaur Jr. Some photos were really hard to find–the band’s early tour with Sonic Youth was such an important part of their initial emergence on the scene but it was so hard to find any photos from that tour. I found some in the end though!
Was there anything that you’d wanted to include in here that you were unable to find?
We did pretty well and had some very useful contacts so we managed to cover the entire span of the band’s career so I’m pretty satisfied with what was included.
Where did the quotes from the likes of Bob Mould and Kim Gordon come from?
From previous interviews.
In the early sections of the book, friends of the band also share their memories. How did you go about figuring out who those contributors would be?
By talking to the band and asking them who they thought was qualified to be included.
What was the process of figuring out the cover art like?
That was all pretty smooth – we worked with Marq Spusta, who has done a lot of work with Dino, and between him, the band, and ourselves, we managed to get something everyone was pleased with.