Category Archives: RIP

RIP Faye Hunter, bass player with Let’s Active

Faye Hunter via Fidelitorium Recordings' Facebook page

Faye Hunter via Fidelitorium Recordings’ Facebook page.

Faye Hunter, a North Carolina-based musician best known for her work as the bass player 1980’s jangle-pop band Let’s Active with Mitch Easter and Sara Romweber, died Saturday.

The 59-year-old died of apparent suicide, according to a blog post by David Menconi on the website of The News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C.

UPDATE: Peter Holsapple of The Db’s reacts

Those of us who grew up with Faye also knew her as a sweet, droll and artistic friend who unintentionally served as something of a den mother and big sister to many of the younger musicians in town, myself included. … It is hard to imagine a world without Faye Hunter. We all wish we could have done more to help her, but we couldn’t.

Click here for the full text of Holsapple’s tribute.

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Speed the Plough joins Bar/None’s July 24 farewell to Maxwell’s

Speed the Plough at Maxwell's on Oct. 20, 2012. (Photo © 2012, Steven P. Marsh)

Speed the Plough at Maxwell’s on Oct. 20, 2012. (Photo © 2012, Steven P. Marsh)

STP is part of a promised ‘cavalcade of mystery stars’ joining Headliners Freedy Johnston and Band, James Mastro’s Health & Happiness Show and Chris Stamey with Anton Fier and Gene Holder

Myrna and the Hangar Boys (Human Switchboard’s Myrna Marcarian, Jared Michael Nickerson, Dave Schramm and Ron Metz) join lineup

WFMU to broadcast live from the lounge

Even before Maxwell’s closing was announced, Speed the Plough was gearing up get active again. The band, which can trace its lineage back to The Feelies through The Trypes, became active in 2009 after a long hiatus, but has been picking up steam lately in anticipation of a new album — a compilation of some of its long-out-of-print music from the early days plus six brand-new tracks.

But now they’re preparing to say goodbye to the venerated Hoboken club with one last gig there, on Thursday, July 24, as part of a Bar/None record label lineup.

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Maxwell’s bowing out with a block party; many details still to be revealed

Patrons enter Maxwell's at 11th and Washington streets in Hoboken, on July 5, 2013, (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

Maxwell’s at 11th and Washington streets in Hoboken, is planning a farewell block party on July 31. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

NJ.com
is reporting
that Maxwell’s, the restaurant and music
club in Hoboken, N.J., will make its farewell with a block party on
11th Street at Washington Street on July 31. It’s clearly an effort
by longtime booker and co-owner Todd
Abramson
to make the 200-capacity club accessible to
the masses of people who will want to be a part of the venerated
venue’s last day. But a block party with DJ music as its final
event?

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Jon Langford and a Maxwell’s memory lapse

The Jon Langford Threesome, from left, at Maxwell's: Tony Maimone, Steve Goulding, Jon Langford. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

The Jon Langford Threesome, from left, at Maxwell’s: Tony Maimone, Steve Goulding, Jon Langford. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

Jon Langford looked truly puzzled on the stage of Maxwell’s.

The Jon Langford Threesome's set list at Maxwell's. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

The Jon Langford Threesome’s set list at Maxwell’s. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

The Welsh-born rocker has played at the Hoboken, N.J., club many times — “37 1/2… the half because tonight’s not done yet” — over the years in many bands, from the Mekons to the Three Johns.

On Tuesday, July 9, his show was billed as “Jon Langford’s Threesome feat. Tony Maimone and Steve Goulding performing Mekons, Waco Bros. and Jon Langford songs from throughout the centuries

“Did the Waco Brothers ever play here,” he asked, during a portion of the set where his cranked out several of that band’s best-loved tunes.

“Three times!” came the cry from the crowd.

The crowd gathers in the back room at Maxwell's for the Jon Langford Threesome. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

The crowd gathers in the back room at Maxwell’s for the Jon Langford Threesome. (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

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Saying goodbye to Maxwell’s: Share your ideas for the final show

Patrons enter Maxwell's at 11th and Washington streets in Hoboken, N.J., on July 5, 2013, (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

Patrons enter Maxwell’s at 11th and Washington streets in Hoboken, N.J., on July 5, 2013, (Photo © 2013, Steven P. Marsh)

We’ve been thinking a lot about closing night at Maxwell’s, the well-loved Hoboken, N.J., music club that hosts its last show on July 31.

There’s a selfish motive, in part, of course: How can WE get to be there. Surely with all the bands and fans that have passed through the Washington Street club over the last 35 years there will be far, far more people trying to get in than the small (capacity 200) venue can possibly hold. With closing a bit over three weeks away, Todd Abramson, the club’s booker and co-owner, is working on a plan.

Todd Abramson with the New York Post's Mary Huhn in Austin in 2003.

Todd Abramson with the New York Post’s Mary Huhn at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas, in 2003.

But, as he told us by phone this morning, “there’s no news here” just yet. He definitely has some ideas about ways to make it accessible to more people and to level the playing field for those who want to be there. But he says he still has a lot to work out.

What we know is that “a,” the first band to play Maxwell’s, is supposed to reunite for the farewell show. And The Bongos, the much better-known band that grew out of “a,” will also be on the bill. But after that, just about everything is pure speculation.

Since things are in flux, you have a chance to weigh in with ideas of your own.

How should the final show be handled? Should it run all day. Should it be free on a first-come, first-served basis, a normal Maxwell’s price ($15-$25 from TicketFly) or should it be premium priced, a la Neil Young at the Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, N.Y., where’s the best seats are tabbed at $285? (Then again, when speaking of Maxwell’s, there are no SEATS, really.)

What about timing? July 31 is a weekday. Should the show start at 9 and go all night? Or should it start in the early afternoon and go on and on?

Who else — band, solo artist, influential individual or fan — be a part of the show in some way?

Don’t just tell us who or what. Tell us why — make a case for your idea. There should be a good reason for every eulogy and every participant in the farewell proceedings.

The sky’s the limit. Share you ideas in the comments section. Get a conversation going. Have fun thinking of the wildest ways possible to pay tribute to Maxwell’s incredible legacy.

Meanwhile, The Bongos promise details of some sort about the show on their Facebook page soon. And keep an eye on Will You Miss Me When I’m Gone? We’ll be sure to let you know of any developments as soon as we can dig them up.

Scott Miller tribute in New York City on June 29; now with free download info

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Artists including A.C. Newman of The New Pornographers, Ted Leo, Will Sheff of Okkervil River, Charles Bissell of the Wrens, Kleenex Girl Wonder (with Matt LeMay on drums), Tim Thomas of Babe the Blue Ox will pay tribute with performances and readings to the late Scott Miller on June 29 at Cake Shop in Manhattan’s Lower East Side.

Scott Miller

Scott Miller

Miller , who died April 15 at 53, was a San Francisco-area musical mainstay and founder of the influential bands Game Theory (1981-1989) and The Loud Family (1991-2006+)

Tickets, at $30 plus a small service charge, go on sale Monday via Brown Paper Tickets by clicking here.

The proceeds go to The Scott Miller Family Memorial Fund in support of his widow, Kristine, and their two daughters, Julianne Elizabeth and Valerie. the fund already has raised $47,000.

Read about a West Coast tribute and learn how to get free downloads of much of Scott’s music after the jump. Continue reading

R.I.P. Captain Beefheart, 1941-2010

The cover for Trout Mask Replica, one of Captain Beefheart's most bizarre and memorable images.

Captain Beefheart in the Mojave Desert, 1980. (Photo by Anton Corbijn)

Captain Beefeheart, born Don Van Vliet, died on Friday, Dec. 17, less than a month short of his 70th birthday.

He reportedly died of complications of multiple sclerosis.

He was a bizarre and influential musical genius. Here’s Pitchfork‘s bio:

Van Vliet collaborated with Frank Zappa before adopting the Captain Beefheart persona and forming Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band, his constantly shifting backing band, in 1964. On the strength of the blues-rock single “Diddy Wah Diddy”, Beefheart and his band signed to A&M. After the label rejected their debut album, Beefheart and co. re-recorded many of the songs and eventually released them as the classic 1967 debut album Safe as Milk.

After signing with Zappa’s Straight Records, Beefheart released the legendary 1969 double LP Trout Mask Replica. Following that surreal masterpiece, Beefheart recorded and released more albums, seesawing back and forth between euphoric bizarreness and more conventional rock. Beefheart retired from music after 1982’s Ice Cream for Crow, retreating to the Mojave Desert and focusing on his visual art. Though his art career was quite successful, he disappeared from public life, reportedly suffering from multiple sclerosis.