We couldn't be more sorry to tell you this. David Berman passed away earlier today. A great friend and one of the most inspiring individuals we've ever known is gone. Rest easy, David. pic.twitter.com/5n5bctcu4j
— (@dragcityrecords) August 7, 2019
We’re incredibly sad to lose David “Silver Jews” Berman. His music touched so many people, including us. There’s a memorial tonight at 7pm:
David Berman, the brilliant and idiosyncratic poet and artist who performed as the Silver Jews and Purple Mountains, died yesterday at the age of 52. “We couldn’t be more sorry to tell you this. David Berman passed away earlier today,” tweeted his label, Drag City. “A great friend and one of the most inspiring individuals we’ve ever known is gone. Rest easy, David.” His cause of death is currently unknown.
Filmmaker Lance Bangs, who has made music videos with everyone from Nirvana to Pavement to Kanye West, is organizing a gathering and reading outside the Met Breuer Museum tonight at 7 p.m. as an “informal memorial gesture.” The Met Breuer is the former site of the Whitney, where Berman worked as a security guard while living with future Pavement members Stephen Malkmus and Bob Nastanovich in Hoboken. The three of them officially formed the Silver Jews there.
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So crushed. I grew up on David Berman and the Silver Jews catalogue in mostly real time… in such a way that his music and lyrics and vocals have touched me to this day and are still growing in significance (and of course a higher high of nostalgia on the side with each revisitation… and there has been so much revisiting these last few years I must say). I was so excited for these upcoming shows and how amazing the new Purple Mountains record is. I was so stoked and so proud of Jarvis and Jeremy and the @woodsist gang for knocking this album outta the park. David’s music always hit on a basic human gut level just in the power of his lyrics and voice alone… in a way no other modern artist of my generation has been able to… We were friends but I was looking forward to hopefully becoming closer and was so excited to see him around with purple mountains and hopefully play on “trains across the sea” in philly. Speaking of that tune (and others)… I’ve been singing a few silver jews songs to my daughters at night before they go to bed… since they were little… (it was a no brainer in the dna of my upbringing…) they were always affected by Cassie’s beautiful voice in “Tennessee” and would wanna sing that part… to the extent the first song my oldest daughter Awilda sang from memory (and later we recorded a version of) was “trains across the sea” and she performed “new orleans” at her co-op talent show. When my family came thru Nashville David and Cassie took us in graciously and David bought the girls a Mr Games style trinket I guess you might call a diorama music box (?) either way it will be cherished always. Love forever to Cassie and David from Kurt, Suzanne, Awilda and Delphine. “Snow is falling in Manhattan…” “I loved being my mother’s son…” “when god was young… he made the wind and the sun. And since then it’s been a slow education. And you got that one idea again………” “oh… oh oh… I’m lightening. Oh… oh oh… I’m rain. Oh… oh oh… it’s frightening… I’m not the same. I’m not the same. I’m not the same.” ❤️ God bless @dragcityrecords for releasing so much (and all) of his material. R.I.P. David Berman. You will be missed.