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What Happened to James Chasse: Chasse time capsule

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Chasse time capsule

from the Portland Mercury

As the grand jury continues hearing testimony on the death in custody on September 17 of James Phillip Chasse, more of his friends are coming forward to tell the story of the man they knew as “Jim Jim”, “Jay”, and “J”—one of the youngest members of Portland’s early punk scene.

Chasse, it turns out, was the vocalist in The Possum Society, a band named after an incident in the early eighties when Portland Police allegedly threw a possum at a NE Portland restaurant in an act of racial provocation. Here he is, mentioned in the sleevenotes to this Pigface Records compilation, Flies Like Holidays (exact pressing date unknown):

Courtesy of Blogtown, you can listen to Chasse’s eccentric vocals on the track, “Crazy Cat Grows Big Feet” by clicking here. The portrait above is by local artist Randy Moe, who lent us the record and knew Chasse well—it will feature in Moe’s upcoming exhibition It’s a Sad Sad Sad Sad World which opens at the Chambers gallery (207 SW Pine) on October 19th.

If you knew Chasse and would like to get in touch, call on 503 294 0840, or email There’s more sleeve art from the record after the jump….

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