Drew Glackin: 1963-2008

Drew Glackin of the band The Silos died this past weekend. Even if his name is not familiar to you, readers of my blog are certain to have enjoyed his wonderful musicianship...Drew's playing was the instrumental foundation of my Public Library album.

a post from THE SILOS, on their email list:

"It is with the greatest sadness that we inform you of the passing of Drew Glackin. He was unaware of an overactive thyroid condition that led to severe heart damage. He was surrounded by family and friends during his final days and hours and we are all still in a state of shock and disbelief.

Drew was adored around the world and his larger than life spirit and contagious jovial energy touched everyone he met, everywhere he went. He was a musician of the highest talent and made his mark in countless bands, record albums, and many thousands of live performances. He will be sorely missed and the memories of his music, his great humor, and his magnanimous generosity of spirit and love will be with us forever.

A fund will be set up to help his family with expenses and we will keep you informed of memorial concerts and events as they develop.

We will all keep Drew in our hearts."

Recording and performing with Drew and The Silos has been one of the highlights of my musical life. On the Public Library album, Drew played all the bass and electric guitar parts, as well as mind-blowing lap steel, Weissenborn slide guitar, and lead guitar solos. To appreciate his brilliance, revisit these moments:

+ the deliciously melodic guitar solo on "Falling Down"
+ the Weissenborn acoustic slide on "Almost Never See" and "Every Town's the Same"
+ the virtuoso bass playing on "Second Language"
+ and (my favorite moment on the record!) the brain-melting double-tracked lap steel on "747s" (check out the above photo of Drew with producer Walter, recording that song)

Drew sat in with my band at the Public Library CD release show, and it was a thrill to hear him perform live what he did so incredibly on the recording. When we tracked the song "Librarian," I loved Drew's hooky guitar solo so much that, for me, it had become an integral part of the song itself...and now whenever my band plays the song, I play Drew's guitar part. I'll always remember what he smilingly said to me after he saw my band perform the song for the first time: "Hey, you did my solo!" I always think of Drew every time I play those songs.

Here are some other albums featuring Drew's tremendous musical offerings:
Jim Roll Lunette: Drew's (and Konrad's and Walter's) involvement in this excellent album was the reason I invited them to work with me on Public Library
Tom Freund Sympatico: I love love love Drew's contribution to the song "Old and in the Way"
John P. Strohm Everyday Life: a new release, featuring the same core players as Public Library, with greatness from Drew as usual
The Silos This Highway is a Circle: of course I'd recommend the last three studio albums from The Silos, which all feature Drew, BUT this recent live album captures his musicianship in a concert setting, PLUS it comes packaged with a DVD so you can visually appreciate Drew working his magic on bass and lap steel.

Visit Drew's MySpace page to hear one of his own original songs.

View the memorial page for Drew at the The Silos webpage.

In addition to all this talk about music, Drew was also one of the kindest, friendliest, funniest, and warmest people you could ever meet. I'll miss our delightful visits on his trips through Minneapolis on tour with a variety of great bands. I can speak for my wife Dawn, as well, who will deeply miss teasing and joking with Drew. Love and prayers go out to Drew's family and friends, and to his bandmates Walter and Konrad. I thank God for the life of Drew Glackin!


toomuchcountry said…
Nice trib Jonathan. I knew you'd be one of many to be deeply grieved by Drew's passing. Not sure if you've seen this or not, but www.drewglackin.com has been set-up to collect photos of Drew. Some of yours from the PL sessions would add greatly to the collection. Also, that's a pretty neat - yet eerie - point about Drew playing with Jim Roll. JUST TODAY, I got a compilation CD thru Lala "The Sound of One Man Clapping" that has 2 Jim Roll cuts on it. Found the tracks on Pandora.com. Not sure if the 2 songs feature Drew or not, but you've given me another reason to dig deeper.

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