Rest In Peace Mark Linkous

it feels like we've lost a good friend.

darin and I have been listening to Sparklehorse together ever since we worked at Nancie's Records when we were 19 years old and there was a copy of vivadixiessubmarinetransmissionplot in the used cd bin. i wasn't that into it because so much of it rocks a little too hard especially for my tender young self back then. but the next album, "good morning spider," sealed the deal.


when we took our giant road trip in 2002, Sparklehorse was our go-to soundtrack music. mostly "good morning spider" which we listened to over and over until it defined the geography, from the frozen lakes of canada to the beaver dams and misty ponds of northern idaho to the green roads of tennessee.


the next year, when we moved in together, we found a desk for free on the side of the road. we painted in purple and pink with little pictures all over the top (goats, pirate ships, etc) and darin painted the lyrics to Sparklehorse songs on the sides: "good morning my child, stay with me awhile, you've not got any place to be, won't you sit a spell with me?" it's the desk i'm sitting at right now.

once darin made me a little booklet of his favorite sparklehorse lyrics with collages he made from national geographic photos.

just last week on our trip up north, we listened to the Sparklehorse album "It's a Wonderful Life" with our friends jorden and becky and talked about how it is one of the greatest albums ever made and blasted tom waits growling "she's got me comin through the dog door" and laughed about it. although we can't really decide which of the four Sparklehorse albums is best, because each one is so perfect. 


one time i had a weird experience at a Sparklehorse show in San Francisco at Bimbo's, one of my favorite venues that I mentioned here. we had driven the big ol van: Darin, his older brother Dave, my sister and i. parking near north beach was absolutely crazy and i had to walk at least a mile in my high heel night-on-the-town boots. addie was staying in the city and the rest of us were continuing down to LA after the show (we drove all night) and on out to joshua tree for a birthday trip for me. anyway i remember at the show i was wearing a snug black sweater and i had one beer and got super hot and red-faced then almost passed out right before the show. i was up by the stage and the crowd had gathered behind me and the bouncer let me out the backdoor by the stage to get some fresh air and i felt special. and then we proceeded to witness mark linkous come out on stage and do the best show ever. darin still says he could hear the metal in mark linkous's legs as he walked across the stage. what i remember is his face close to us at the edge of the stage as he did weird stuff with the equipment, tweaking knobs to create all kinds of ephemeral sounds that were blowing my mind.  

my favorite song ever might be "shade and honey." forever i thought the lyrics were "may your shape be sweet" which is kind of awesome too, but the real lyrics are insanely beautiful, especially when his sweet voice sings them:

i could look you in the face for a thousand years
it's like a civil war of pain and of cheer

but if you was a horse i could help you with your chains
i could ride through the fields by your fiery mane

may your shade be sweet
and float upon the lakes
where the sun will be made of honey

i'll cry gardens while you burn cause no one here can save you
she's returning to the earth but one day she will be silver

stars are dying in my chest until i see you again
she was born with the wings of a hawk
and she combs her hair with blood

may your shade be sweet
and float upon the lakes
where the sun will be made of honey

may your shade be sweet
and float upon the lakes
i know the sun could be made of honey

 it breaks my heart that i can't look forward to new sparklehorse albums to accompany new road trips and memories.
faretheewell, brilliant soul. your songs are treasures of honey, skin, pony, fire, teeth, heart, dog, ghost, moonshine.

Comments

Milla said…
What a sad, sweet post.
Andrea said…
what a lovely tribute! I'm embarrassed to say I've never heard of this band, but will dutifully check it out. Any friend of moonshine junkyard is a friend of mine :)

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