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R.I.P. John Kane, New Yorker Cartoonist, Ukulele Player, Mensch

Filed under: In Memoriam   Tagged: ,

Emily Gordon writes:

I was very sorry to hear from illustrator and cartoonist Derek Van Gieson that John Kane passed away a few days ago. John, a New Yorker cartoonist, was also a dedicated musician and devotee of that small instrument with a big heart, the ukulele. He sent me many ukulele links and had a YouTube channel dedicated to them; I’ll find it to link to, but right now, the thought makes me too sad.

Here’s Derek writing eloquently on what made John so special.
John may have been getting up there in age by the time I caught up with him, but he was more animated and on the ball than any twelve youngsters combined. He was always going out to exhibitions, learning about some new technology, or improving himself via activities like judo. One of his most recent passions was taking up the uke. He had five models last time I remember. He’d watch Youtube clips and learn from the masters. I know he drove Sam and Sid nuts with all of his uke talk as there was usually something happening in that realm that he was very enthusiastic about. After lunch we’d walk down to the subway and talk music shop or just shop about guitars. He always had a unique theory he was thinking about or a new way of experiencing something that he’d often share. More often than not, I’d come home from The New Yorker luncheons, thinking I was one of the luckiest bastards in the world to be in the court of these fascinating gentlemen. Eventually our friendship became quite solid and if I didn’t make it one tuesday for lunch, either John or Sid would get ahold of me to ask me what the hell happened. I can’t really express how much that meant to me.
But read the whole post. It really captures the person John was, and the person we will all miss whether we were friends, acquaintances (like me), or fans of John’s dynamic, lovable, slightly unhinged cartoons.


How sad to hear of John Kane’s passing. His cartoons are brilliant.

Kane was a lovable guy, really a big kid at heart. It was always a pleasure to see him at the cartoonist lunches, and I’m sorry I didn’t attend more of them before he left us.

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