Thursday, December 13, 2007

Remembering Ben Eberbaugh and Mary Hansen, Five Years Later

Five years ago from last Saturday, one of my friends, Ben, was killed by a drunk driver. He was one of the founding members of the Black Lips:

Shortly before 3 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 1, Ben Eberbaugh, the 22-year-old guitarist for local band the Black Lips, was killed when a motorist driving the wrong way on Ga. 400 slammed into his vehicle. According to Fulton County police reports, Jennifer Dawn Swierzynski, 29, was traveling northbound in the southbound lanes when her Toyota Camry crashed head-on into Eberbaugh's Ford Explorer. Both drivers died on impact.
The Black Lips, who have developed a reputation as Atlanta's rowdiest rock act, were to have kicked off a tour of the Midwest and East Coast with fellow Atlanta band, the Carbonas. The tour was to promote the release of the Black Lips' full-length debut on famed punk label Bomp Records, and was set to kick off Monday, Dec. 2, with a show at MJQ Concourse. But on Monday night the club's doors remained closed to the public to give Eberbaugh's friends a place to gather and reminisce about his life.

"He was one of the sweetest and most sincere people I knew," says close friend Valery Lovely, a local DJ and photographer. "He's the last person I would have ever expected anything bad to happen to."

Despite the tragedy, the Black Lips plan on carrying out the tour. They will leave Atlanta after Eberbaugh's funeral, which is being held Wednesday, Dec. 4, in Roswell (further details were not available at press time).

"We're still going to go on tour," says Black Lips vocalist Cole Alexander. "It was something we were all so excited about doing and I know he would never have wanted us to give it up."

- Chad Radford, Creative Loafing Published 12.04.02

Here is a song from the Black Lips' first self-titled record that Ben Sang on...

DOWNLOAD: The Black Lips - Throw It Away


Five years ago Sunday, Mary Hansen, guitarist and one of the vocalists in Stereolab was struck by a bus while riding her bike in London. She was 36 years old.

I have a bootleg of them playing in San Fransisco in 1997 and they perform this song "The Light That Will Cease To Fail," and her vocals are angelic. I listened to it maybe 36 consecutive times the day she died. Stereolab changed my entire musical life as a kid. They were and continue to be my favorite band of all time.