Long before Vern Rumsey recorded my old band Replicator, long before I was crashing at his place on tour. LONG before HHG. I was listening to Unwound. Wearing out my cassette tapes rocking out to Repetition or New Plastic Ideas.
Put simply, they were one of the reasons I play music in the first place. Their unique and iconic sound was so immediate and compelling and it’s forceful presentation inspired me. I always held that in my head and heart, even as we created stuff together and approached things as musical peers. Vern didn’t seem to realize how much Unwound had touched and inspired people, as if Leaves Turn Inside You isn’t one of the best albums ever made in indie rock. Come on!
But Unwound did and he was a big part of that. Vern wasn’t a perfect guy, his demons are well documented, and shouldn’t be ignored. He was an alcoholic, let’s not short sell that.
He sought help and received it, and transcended that gross and destructive addiction for awhile. He dug deep and brought the thunder with us and found a light in the darkness to transcend for.
He was without a doubt the biggest advocate of Household Gods and was experiencing the deep high of creative satisfaction.
I was glad he got to have that. I am glad to have been in his life.
He was one of the most unique and interesting bass players of all time for my tastes, one of a kind. An icon.
I remember watching him play in the unstoppable and incredible Unwound, just bearing down in that inexorable way. Smoking tough the entire time.
A portrait of rock ’n roll cool, a viking.
The world is a sadder and quieter place without him in it and I miss my friend.
Rest in Power,
Unwound – Corpse Pose
Unwound – Valentine Card / Kantina / Were, Are And Was Or Is
Unwound – Demolished
Unwound – Side Effects of Being Tired
Unwound – Broken E-Strings
Unwound – December
Unwound – For Your Entertainment
Oslo of Olympia – Walk The Plank
Blonde Redhead – Water
Unwound – All Souls Day
Unwound – Terminus
Unwound – Lady Elect
Unwound – Envelope
Long Hind Legs – Open Wide
Unwound – Re-Enact the Crime
Unwound – Dragnalus
Unwound – Off This Century
Red Rumsey – Big House
Unwound – Arboretum
Household Gods – Rest In Power (Instrumental)/Unwound – Below The Salt