Jeff Tweedy and Nick Offerman’s relationship has gone public over the past few years — Wilco showed up on Parks And Recreation a few times over the series’ run, and Offerman directed the “Low Key” video from Tweedy’s most recent solo album, Sukierae. Now, Offerman has dedicated a part of his new book, Gumption: Relighting The Torch Of Freedom With America’s Gutsiest Troublemakers, to his obsession with Wilco and Tweedy himself. An excerpt from this book was published in Salon over the weekend, and it’s hilarious and also heartwarming to see how much Offerman cares about this man and his band:
Jeff Tweedy is really nice. Jeff Tweedy is really smart. And Jeff Tweedy is really, really cute. He’s what the young ladies of a bygone era would refer to as a “dreamboat.” For my money, he’s also the preeminent American singer-songwriter of my generation. Finally, I would add that I am in love with him. We are getting married. The end.
[…] Jeff Tweedy’s music spoke to us, and much of the eared world, with a compelling relevance. It was clearly our music. How did he do it? How could he see inside me? Little did I realize that I was enjoying the song stylings of my future husband.
Offerman recounts his first experiences with Wilco, his missed connection encounters with Tweedy while they both lived in Chicago, and their geographic similarities:
With good reason, it turns out, as Mr. Tweedy grew up in a geographical circumstance quite similar to my own. His hometown of Belleville, Illinois, was proximate to St. Louis in the same way that my village of Minooka, Illinois, was close to Chicago. We both felt out of place, or “Misunderstood,” in our conservative communities, and so we turned to the arts as an escape route to the world at large.
He also goes into the history surrounding the release of the band’s landmark album Yankee Hotel Foxtrot:
…the noble troubadours of Wilco had produced an exciting, new, and creative rock-and-roll album, paying no heed to current fashion or radio popularity, as they never have, and they got AOL Time Warner to pay them for it. Twice.
That kind of happy ending doesn’t seem to happen to artists who are striving for fame and fortune. By sticking to their creative guns, Wilco ended up being rewarded exponentially more than they would ever have had they been trying to produce radio hits or merely capitalize on their cute faces. Especially Jeff.
Read the whole thing here.