Zappagram #87: Rest in Peace, My Beloved Brother

Zappagram #87: Rest in Peace, My Beloved Brother

Hey friends,

This week’s newsletter is A.) stripped down to the basics and B.) late but for a serious reason.

We’re all here because we love music. Have you ever asked yourself where your love for music comes from? For me, it was my older brothers.

From the earliest age, my oldest brother Rick had the deepest love of music, which was then passed on to my middle brother Tim and eventually passed down to me, who came along many years later. I always idolized my older brothers, and so I gained their love of music (and eventually) their musicianship from a very young age. Rick played guitar and piano and sang. Tim was a drummer. I would become a guitarist like Rick.

This past Sunday, my oldest brother Rick passed away. It’s hard to put into words how I feel because I’m still in shock. These past few days, I’ve cried a lot, and I’ve drank a lot of bourbon, but I know I can’t keep drinking to numb the pain. So, today I’m trying to soberly sit with my feelings and process his loss. And it’s really, really, really fucking hard.

I’m trying to focus on the good memories and on the love and positivity he brought to my life as well as to everyone else who had the pleasure of knowing him. He could make fast friends with anyone and often did. Rick was loving, kind, generous, and talented despite having had quite a difficult life himself.

I think that’s quite the legacy to leave behind. And the other legacy he leaves behind is his three sons, my incredible nephews, who are also loving, kind, generous, and talented, the same as their dad was.

So, today, as I sit here writing this and trying to put into words that which cannot be put into words, I’m going to take the lessons I learned from my brother and commit to more solidly putting them into practice in my own life—to be even more loving, and kind, and generous.

I’m going to listen to The Beatles a lot, one of—if not his favorite—band. And I’m going to think of my brother, remembering all the good times we had. I will feel these feelings and cry a lot more because good people deserve our tears when they pass on. They earned every tear we shed by the love they gave away while they were here.

As we approach the holidays, I’d like to offer everyone a friendly reminder to tell the people you love that you love them. Tell them what they mean to you because we aren’t guaranteed tomorrow, and you don’t want to let that chance pass you by. Take it from me. You don’t want to live with such regrets.

Thanks for listening everyone. I hope you and your loved ones have a happy holiday full of love and, of course, lots of good music.

“No matter what happens in life, be good to people. Being good to people is a wonderful legacy to leave behind.”
—Taylor Swift



Trevor Noah to Host 2024 Grammys
The former Daily Show host is coming back for a fourth year [Pitchfork]

Michael McDonald Announces Memoir What a Fool Believes
Written with help from actor Paul Reiser, the book arrives in May [Pitchfork]

Mötley Crüe Drummer Tommy Lee Accused of Sexually Assaulting Woman in Helicopter
Jane Doe alleges Lee attacked her in 2003 after he and his pilot consumed alcohol, smoked marijuana, and snorted cocaine during the flight [RollingStone]

Kanye West Is Still Saying Sh-t Like ‘Jesus Christ, Hitler, Ye’
The rapper resumed his his antisemitic streak and called out various foes during a tirade at a Vultures album event in Las Vegas [RollingStone]

Indigo Girls Documentary Coming to Theaters in 2024
After premiering at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival, the Alexandria Bombach-directed film is coming to North American theaters in 2024 [Consequence]

Dead & Company in Talks for 2024 Residency at Las Vegas Sphere
The dates would take place “next summer” [Consequence]

Patti Smith Cancels Shows After Being Hospitalized
Smith called off Italian shows after she was briefly hospitalized [Pitchfork]

Former Mr. Bungle Member Theo Lengyel a “Person of Interest” in Disappearance of Girlfriend
The saxophonist is being eyed in the missing person/homicide investigation [Consequence]

Colin Burgess, AC/DC’s Original Drummer, Dead at 77
The founding member of Australian hard rock legends played on their first single [RollingStone]

Amp Fiddler, Parliament-Funkadelic Keyboardist, Dead at 65
Influential musician was also a mentor to late Detroit producer J Dilla [Consequence]

Manny Martinez, Early Misfits Drummer, Dead at 69
Martinez was the first drummer to be featured on a recording by the band [Consequence]



The Ballroom Thieves: Other People’s Songs EP [listen]
Birdy: People Help The People EP [listen]
The Black Crowes: The Southern Harmony And Musical Companion (Super Deluxe) [listen]
EELS: EELS So Good: Essential EELS, Vol.2 [listen]
Placebo: Collapse Into Never - Live in Europe [listen]
Susan G: Christmas With Susan G [listen]



- JAN 12 -

Kali Uchis: Orquídeas
Lou Reed: Hudson River Wind Meditations
The Vaccines: Pick-Up Full of Pink Carnations

- JAN 19 -

Green Day: Saviors
Sleater-Kinney: Little Rope

- JAN 26 -

Future Islands: People Who Aren’t There Anymore
Gruff Rhys: Sadness Sets Me Free
The Smile: Wall of Eyes
Ty Segall: Three Bells



- DEC 18 -

Birthdays: Chas Chandler (1938) • Keith Richards (1943) • Elliot Easton of The Cars (1953) • Geordie Walker of Killing Joke (1958) • Grant Marshall of Massive Attack (1959) • Jack Lawrence, bassist for The Raconteurs, The Greenhornes, The Dead Weather, and City and Colour (1976) • Billie Eilish (2001) • Hall and Oates started a four-week run at #1 on the U.S. singles chart with “Maneater.” (1982) • Terry Hall of The Specials died aged 63. (2022) • Martin Duffy of Primal Scream died aged 55 from a brain injury after a fall at home. (2022)

- DEC 19 -

Birthdays: Édith Piaf (1915) • Professor Longhair (1918) • Phil Ochs (1940) • Maurice White of Earth, Wind & Fire (1941) • Alvin Lee (1944) • 10,000 Maniacs guitarist Robert Buck died of liver failure aged 42. (2000)

- DEC 20 -

Birthdays: Peter Criss (1947) • Alan Parsons (1948) • Don Heffington of Lone Justice (1950) • Mike Watt of The Stooges and Billy Bragg (1957) • Chris Robinson of The Black Crowes (1966) • Joan Baez was sentenced to 45 days in prison after being arrested during an anti-war demonstration. (1967)

- DEC 21 -

Birthdays: Frank Zappa (1940) • Albert Lee (1943) • Carl Wilson of The Beach Boys (1946) • Spanish virtuoso flamenco guitarist Paco de Lucía (1947) • Pat Murphy of The Lemonheads (1964) • American blues singer and guitarist, Albert King died from a heart attack in Memphis, Tennessee. (1992)

- DEC 22 -

Birthdays: James Gurley, guitarist with Big Brother and the Holding Company (1939) • Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick (1948) • Robin and Maurice Gibb (1949) • Richard James Edwards of Manic Street Preachers (1968) • Meghan Trainor (1993) • Joe Strummer died of a suspected heart attack, aged 50. (2002) • Joe Cocker died of lung cancer in Colorado, aged 70. (2014) • American guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter Leslie West died aged 75 after suffering a heart attack in his home near Daytona, Florida. (2020)

- DEC 23 -

Birthdays: Tim Hardin (1941) • Derek Smalls, bassist of Spinal Tap (1943) • Adrian Belew (1949) • Eddie Vedder (1964) • George Harrison's home in Maui was broken into by Cristin Keleher, who cooked a frozen pizza, drank beer from the fridge, started some laundry, and phoned her mother in New Jersey. Keleher was later arrested and charged with burglary and theft. (1999)

- DEC 24 -

Birthdays: Lee Dorsey (1924) • Lemmy (1945) • Millard Powers of Counting Crows (1965) • Doyle Bramhall II (1968) • The Eagles sixth album, Hotel California, spent the first of eight non-consecutive weeks at the top of the Billboard chart. (1976)

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Love to all,