Jeffrey Lewis: Singing, drawing and talking

For years, Jeffrey Lewis has been a semihidden treasure of New York music, writing songs that are at once funny and poignant, performing with an instinctive understanding of the connection between punk rock and folk. He is also a talented comic-book artist and, in concert, often accompanies songs with a large flip book of his illustrations. On May 19, Rough Trade will release Lewis's latest album, 'Em Are I; the following night, he headlines Bowery Ballroom. The musician, who contributed a comic strip to this week's magazine, recently stopped by the Time Out office to perform a pair of songs. Below is 'Em Are I's "Roll Bus Roll," featuring the backing vocal "talents" of the TONY Music section. After the jump is one of Lewis's illustrated numbers as well as a short video interview. The videos were edited by Yung-Chien Hsieh and Andy Nguyen.

Below is Lewis performing the Korean chapter of his ongoing "History of Communism."

Below is an interview I conducted with Jeffrey Lewis in April 2009. The video was edited by Yung-Chien Hsieh and Andy Nguyen. (And here is an interview I conducted with the singer in 2006, upon the release of City & Eastern Songs.)