A career spanning nearly twenty years and almost as many records came to a tragic close this weekend as Songs:Ohia and Magnolia Electric Co. frontman Jason Molina died. He was 39, he hailed from Lorena, Ohio, and in the words of Bottomless Pit frontman Tim Midgett, he “sang like a fucking bird“.
I’m in the middle of writing an article for this upcoming issue, but I’m having a hard time focusing on it. This is devastating. Molina’s songs were so uniquely brilliant and beautiful and brimming with humanity that the news of his loss makes it hard to care about anything else. A 2012 tour documentary, here on Vimeo, captured Magnolia Electric Co. playing in Saskatoon, and folks on my Facebook feed today mentioned how it managed to show a brief, electrifying glimpse of a captivating performer and his irreplaceable voice. Other friends of mine were acquaintances of his; to a person, they’re crushed. He died too young, and he and his work will both be missed.
Here’s “Farewell Transmission” off the masterful 2003 LP, Magnolia Electric Co.