Vic Chesnutt dead

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Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby basecamp » Fri Dec 25, 2009 4:32 pm

Sad news for all fans of one of the greatest songwriters ever. Sources now confirm that Vic Chesnutt died after a suicide attempt.

I was lucky enough to see a few of his concerts and I met him once. His music was and will be part of my life.

Thanks for the music Vic!

I will miss you!

"Singer-songwriter Vic Chesnutt was dead, following what was largely believed to be a suicide attempt. Sources now confirm that Vic Chesnutt has passed away at the age of 45. San Francisco’s Examiner, reports that Vic Chesnutt was proclaimed dead just hours after slipping into a coma.
Image


Entrenched in the Athens, Ga. music scene, Vic Chesnutt was a songwriter’s songwriter; he first earned the admiration of R.E.M.’s Michael Stipe in the late ’80s and since then was praised by countless other notable songwriters and musicians, many of which eventually collaborated with him. His most recent band included members of Fugazi, Godspeed! You Black Emperor and Silver Mt. Zion Orchestra, but over the years he collaborated with members of Widespread Panic, Cracker, Lambchop, Throwing Muses, M. Ward, Cowboy Junkies and many more.

Chesnutt’s national profile was elevated in 1996 when his songs were covered by an impressive list of contributors including Madonna, R.E.M., Smashing Pumpkins and Garbage for a Sweet Relief compilation album that benefited musicians without health insurance. Ironically and tragically,Vic Chesnutt had health insurance and wasn’t personally eligible for financial help from Sweet Relief, despite struggling to cover his significant health care costs. A car accident at the age of 18 left Vic Chesnutt in a wheelchair, with a lifetime of complications.

Chesnutt leaves us with a catalog of 13 studio albums, including this year’s critically acclaimed ‘At the Cut,’ which he was recently out on the road supporting. In a live review of one of those shows, the New York Times noted that Chesnutt’s songs were contemplations on “not just mortality but also the broader inevitability of collapse and decay.”

In an interview past September, Chesnutt admitted that, as an artist, he was difficult to pigeonhole into one specific genre. “I was labeled as alt-country for years but I never saw that at all,” he said. “I like it when you’re confused by an artist for a minute. I like it when everything popping out of your iPod from a band is not the same crap over and over. That makes me happy.”

Vic Chesnutt both the man and his music made many people happy. We will remember him for that, and for his songs, which will continue to give us moments of catharsis and release."

http://www.spinner.com/2009/12/25/vic-chesnutt-dead/
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby neo » Fri Dec 25, 2009 6:04 pm

Very sad news indeed. :(

These is still some confusion about the situation and only him being in a coma has been confirmed.

Vic Chesnutt, Singer, Is in a Coma
http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/ ... in-a-coma/

Vic Chesnutt in Coma, Family Confirms
http://www.spinner.com/2009/12/24/vic-chesnutt-suicide/


Chesnutt, 45, was a paraplegic since the age of 18 and struggled with unending health problems which led to unruly hospital bills. He told Spinner earlier this year that "right now, I am in huge trouble in that the hospital is suing me for $35,000 for payment, which is terrifying -- and the rub is that I have health insurance."


It's ironic (even if it doesn't really relate to the circumstances above) that the bill for comprehensive health insurance was passed in the senate just yesterday.
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby John K. » Fri Dec 25, 2009 6:08 pm

Damn.
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead?

Postby basecamp » Fri Dec 25, 2009 9:25 pm

Vic death reports are still unconfirmed!
Vic Chesnutt Death Reports Unconfirmed

As I mentioned last night, there were a few reports that said singer-songwriter Vic Chesnutt died after slipping into a coma. All of those reports seemed to point to one source: Henry Owings.

However, as of about an hour ago, new information has surfaced that Chesnutt has not died and is indeed still in a coma. As one Examiner piece notes, there has been no official word released, and many a death article (such as one in Spinner) have been re-written to fix the errors. The Wall Street Journal published an article about a half hour ago that says Chesnutt is alive. It quotes a couple of people close to Chesnutt, including the head of Constellation Records:

“There is no truth to the rumour that Vic has died,” said Don Wilkie, co-founder of Constellation, addressing rumors on the Web. “He remains alive.”

The Examiner piece also pointed to a comment on another Examiner site believed to be made by Jem Cohen. Here’s what Cohen wrote:

Vic Chesnutt is not dead. I am with him at the hospital in Georgia, and while he is in serious coma, we do not know what the outcome will be. Vic has survived serious comas in the past. Please do not report misinformation. You owe that to his family and friends, as well as to journalistic ethics.
Thank you.
Jem Cohen

Although, as information concerning Chesnutt’s life has proven, it’s hard to rely on any information on the Internet these days (and would be hard to confirm it as having been written by Cohen), he’s made a valid point. I did my best yesterday to say that there had only been reports that Chesnutt had died, and made sure to note that all the information seemed to confirm a single source which one site said wasn’t the most trustworthy person on the subject. I hope I did not lead any others into believing the false information as well.
http://trueslant.com/leorgalil/2009/12/ ... confirmed/
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby neo » Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:36 am

From the Constellation records homepage: http://cstrecords.com/


VIC CHESNUTT 1964 - 2009

Surrounded by family and friends, Vic Chesnutt died in Athens Georgia this afternoon, Friday 25 December at 14:59.

In the few short years that we knew him personally, Vic transformed our sense of what true character, grace and determination are all about. Our grief is inexpressible and Vic’s absence unfathomable.

We will make more information available according to the wishes of Vic’s family and friends.

Don and Ian
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby Bequia » Sat Dec 26, 2009 3:12 am

....all men will be sailors then....
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby lightning » Sat Dec 26, 2009 7:29 am

I was introduced to Vic Chesnutt this year as he opened for Jonathan Richman at the Bowery Ballroom in New York. I saw him first off stage as he wheeled his wheelchair through the crowd loudly exclaiming "Where's the bathroom? I have to take a piss?" Onstage, he was just as forthright, honest and upfront. His songs were incredible. He was truly a breath of fresh air, the best I've performer I've seen all year. I could see the Jonathan Richman influence and I'm glad they found each other. You can only admire the courage of a man who continues to be, to create, and perform after being a paraplegic in a wheel chair. I guess after twenty seven years that courage gave out. The health care system in the US that had him owing $35,000 in hospital bills though he had health insurance didn't help his spririts any. We are learning that prescription pills can be as lethal as street drugs.

If anybody here doesn't know Vic and his work, try this video:
The Fox and Little Vic:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ccy9e6FffzI



"Everything I Say" ) ( spoiled by too many loud musicians).

http://acapella.harmony-central.com/sho ... ?t=2517246

And this one, Supernatural, subtitled in French by my co-translator philipchek: It's about the accident that left him paralyzed.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0d_Dl1fF4M
Last edited by lightning on Sat Dec 26, 2009 6:24 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby Henning » Sat Dec 26, 2009 11:45 am

Now that it seems to be confirmed - yeah crap - there's nothing left to say. We lost Willy DeVille and Vic Chesnutt this year. I saw both perform live several times and they will be missed greatly.
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby basecamp » Sat Dec 26, 2009 3:21 pm

Here is a link to donations and a wonderful eulogy from Kristin Hersh http://kristinhersh.cashmusic.org/vic/

Image

" What this man was capable of was superhuman. Vic was brilliant, hilarious and necessary; his songs messages from the ether, uncensored. He developed a guitar style that allowed him to play bass, rhythm and lead in the same song -- this with the movement of only two fingers. His fluid timing was inimitable, his poetry untainted by influences. He was my best friend.

I never saw the wheelchair--it was invisible to me--but he did. When our dressing room was up a flight of stairs, he'd casually tell me that he'd meet me in the bar. When we both contracted the same illness, I told him it was the worst pain I'd ever felt. "I don't feel pain," he said. Of course. I'd forgotten. When I asked him to take a walk down the rain spattered sidewalk with me, he said his hands would get wet. Sitting on stage with him, I would request a song and he'd flip me off, which meant, "This finger won't work today." I saw him as unassailable--huge and wonderful, but I think Vic saw Vic as small, broken. And sad.

I don't know if I'll ever be able to listen to his music again, but I know how vital it is that others hear it. When I got the phone call I'd been dreading for the last fifteen years, I lost my balance. My whole being shifted to the left; I couldn't stand up without careening into the wall and I was freezing cold. I don't think I like this planet without Vic; I swore I would never live here without him. But what he left here is the sound of a life that pushed against its constraints, as all lives should. It's the sound of someone on fire. It makes this planet better.

And if I'm honest with myself, I admit that I still feel like he's here, but free of his constraints. Maybe now he really is huge. Unbroken. And happy.

Love,
Kristin

100% of all funds raised will go to Vic's family."
Berlin 90ies /2008: Amsterdam/Berlin/Hamburg/ London RAH /2009: Berlin/Barcelona 2010: Odense/Berlin/Ghent(3x)/Wiesbaden/Strasbourg/Marseilles/Hannover/Las Vegas(2x),2012: Ghent(5x)/Amsterdam(2x)/Berlin/London/Verona/Toulon/Paris(2x)/Barcelona
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby Bequia » Sat Dec 26, 2009 4:39 pm

US National Public Radio has posted links to its archives of Vic's appearances on NPR - including this, the "tiny desk concert", from 2008, this performance on Mountain Stage in 2009, this discussing At the Cut from earlier this month and this around the time Silver Lake was released in 2003 ...

In the third link above, Vic discusses the flirtations he writes about in that song, discussing his feelings after being revived from suicide attempts:

Angry that they revived me, you know? I'd be like how dare you? You know, how dare you people interfere in my, you know, what is obviously my life, my wish? But you know, of course, as the hours and days wear on, you realize well, there is joy to be had. I mean, this is how I - I'm sure everybody's different, you know, just how I, how it struck me. You know, when the days would wear on, you know, I would start to, you know, see some joy again in the world and be like whew, I eked - I squeaked that one out.

and his feelings after the death of others:

when you see somebody else die of natural causes or whatever, for me it's also a kind of wakeup call...Well, like when my friends have died or something like that, it made me feel silly. My sorrows seemed silly in that I'm not ready to go. As I said in the song, the sweet relief, I'm not - I don't deserve the sweet relief of death yet, because I haven't accomplished my tasks yet.


... cum Lazaro quondam paupere aeternam habeas requiem ... in paradisum
....all men will be sailors then....
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby neo » Sat Dec 26, 2009 5:39 pm

Thank you very much for posting the links Bequia!
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby neo » Sat Dec 26, 2009 9:18 pm

“We have lost one of our great ones. His songs and his story remain.”

Michael Stipe



I flew around a little room once. A line from Supernatural.
He was just that. He possessed an unearthly energy and
yet was humanistic with the common man in mind. He was
entirely present and entirely somewhere else. A mystical
somewhere else. A child and an old guy as he called himself.
Before he made an album he said he was a bum. Now he
is in flight bumming round beyond the little room. With his
angel voice.

Patti Smith



Read more at http://cstrecords.com/
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby neo » Sat Dec 26, 2009 10:17 pm

This page is a tribute to Vic Chesnutt - here to accept donations on behalf of his family to defray the expenses associated with his recent hospitalizations and death. 100% of all funds raised will go to Vic's family.

http://kristinhersh.cashmusic.org/vic/

Kristin Hersh


Please donate. Thanks!
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby lightning » Sun Dec 27, 2009 4:51 am

The lyric from "Supernatural" quoted by Patti Smith is misquoted. "I flew around that hospital room once," is how he sings it, not "I flew around that little room once" as lyrics sites also wrongly have stated it. Vic is describing his out-of-the-body experience on intravenous demerol which occurred after the accident that paralyzed him. He denies, at first, that it was supernatural, but then reconsiders, maybe it was.
Listen to this song on YouTube, it is one of his finest.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0d_Dl1fF4M


Also listen to "My Name is Judas Iscariot" -- where Vic allows Judas to offer a defense of himself:
" I too was a chosen one
To be a brave and loyal suicided soldier."
Could this be why he chose (or was chosen) to die on the day of Jesus Christ's birth (Christmas)?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sVfUtqfeRfI
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Re: Vic Chesnutt dead

Postby neo » Sun Dec 27, 2009 12:54 pm

Even Patti Smith isn't perfect... :lol:

No Idea why he chose (or was chosen) to die all too soon. Some comments mentioned the debts because of the hospital suing him and Kristin Hersh wrote that he had left a note "this time".

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