Behold my astonishing ignorance of Thee Thees, and the amazing grace of Rachel Miss-Mess below.
Dear Rachel Miss-Mess,
Making a playlist of “Thee” bands to share on JNR blog. Thee Oh Sees, Thee Open Sex etc. etc. etc.
There’s a bunch of Thee Bands playing Cataracts, and Lou’s been talking about Thee Oh Sees, and I bought your record at the listening party last weekend and I’ve been listening to it over and over.
The only unifying quality I can identify here is that all of these bands have lo-fi psychedelic, analog tendencies + not coincidentally a bunch of them are associated with Magnetic South/Cataracts/have releases that are only on Bandcamp etc.
Also they have names that might confuse a search engine/make them hard to find. I would imagine that fishing with a search phrase like “Open Sex” would drag up some pretty grody stuff. Tsunamis would probably drag up a lot of stuff about tropical storms instead of Thee Tsunamis etc. etc.
I wouldn’t consider Thee Open Sex or Thee Oh Sees to be surfer rock, but most of the others would loosely fall in that category. Is there a surfer rock in-joke?
Is there any conscious significance to the “Thee” tag beyond the above in your mind?
BTW I FUCKING LOVE YOUR RECORD*
*Dear Reader you will have to scroll down the page after clicking through on this link before you arrive at the field where you can order or listen to Thee Open Sex’s LP. Keep a lookout for the eyeball.
“Thee”, at least for me, is intrinsically connected with Billy Childish and his bands like Thee Headcoats (and girlfriend band Thee Headcoatees), Thee Milkshakes, Thee Mighty Caesars, etc. Childish was a poet, an artist, a punk, and a freak that has really inspired me personally and I know is an important figure to many others in our scene as well.
At this point you’re right though–it’s totally a joke that has almost run it’s course haha! However with “Thee Open Sex”, there is a slightly different story. For about two years John Dawson was releasing tapes with various collaborators as “Open Sex”, releasing stuff like “Open Sex on Every Street Corner”. However when we started to come together as a band in 2012 and really record and play, we realized it was quite difficult to Google “open sex” or “open sex band” and find anything related our music amidst the hoards of nasty YouTube videos and graphic sexual images and websites.
SOOO we thought it would be funny to smack a “thee” in front of it and be more easily recognizable on the web. Then we released our first lp with that name, but yet remain “Open Sex”. The “thee” is entirely optional!