The Sad Passing of Jonathan Dekel

Lights were dimmed in most Amsterdam night-spots this month

Lights were dimmed in most Amsterdam night-spots this month

 Lights were dimmed in most Amsterdam night-spots this month as news crept out (like a stealthy ankle hugging fog) that Jon Dekel was heading back to Canada, via a short stay in London. Heineken immediately put its prices up to cope with the anticipated shortfall in profits.

Amsterdam’s premier bohemian and lunatic will be sadly missed. Of course, he’s still writing for us, (fuck it, he is the proprietor after all), its just that you good burgers of Amsterdam will feel a chill wind of melancholy blow closer to your hearts.

Anyway, to banish the gloom, here are our top Jon D moments in an eventful year and a bit.

1} Stopping the Libertines tour bus July (was it July?) 2003

After a running backstage row with London’s finest, and screaming various nonsensical, but vituperative remarks, (the highlight of which was "you’re the death of rock and roll, Libertines"); Jon D managed to collapse from his bike (fall would not be an adequate description of the movement he executed) in front of a revving, soon to depart Libs tour bus. He then demanded that his "companions" were given back to him for the evening. (These were two ladies of dubious reputation, and worse head gear, who had cleverly managed to get onto the bus without him). Cue mayhem from all parties amid a lie down protest from Jon.

2} Taking valium, (and something more energetic), at a rave. At the same time.

Not something to be recommended I’d have thought, especially at one of those "high energy raves" where, (so I’ve heard), young people go and take pep pills and eat hamburgers. Anyway, Jon spent most of the evening in a comatose (and apparently happy) state, only to periodically wake up with a pressing desire to talk at great speed about anything at all. People who know Jon at all will blanche at the thought of him talking at an even greater speed than normal. Slumber would once more overtake him after a demonic sermon had been issued. An interview with a band who shall, to save their blushes remain incognito, proved somewhat "difficult" the following day. Somehow, heroically, Jon completed this ordeal and was subsequently flattered by the kind concerns of the band who, more than once, offered to put him to bed.

3} Histrionics at "Soundtrack" Haagweg 4, June 2004.

Leader of Amsterdam’s ‘bohemian’ "Freakout"; Jon D took his rock god duties seriously enough to turn up to his debut gig two hours before curtain up without a guitar, (which later morphed into a guitar without any strings), drum kit, drummer, guitarist, (who thankfully did show up later), and song list. Or songs. Somehow he pulled it off, and climaxed a triumphant performance by rolling around the Haagweg’s filthy floor screaming about unhealthy, almost Oedipal mother fixations. All of this in eye liner.

4}Shame in the Red Light.

Whilst out on a soiree for a friend, Jon decided that further entertainment lay in viewing one of Amsterdam’s notorious peep shows. A healthy spectacle of live copulation duly followed, the climax of which, literally, was the physical climax of the gentleman involved in the act. Upon a window of one of the booths. Jon’s booth. Cue screaming and wailing from Jon. He’s never got over it. My, how we shall miss him.

Richard Foster