New Heathens

DREW GLACKIN: 1963-2008


Some very sad news, our friend Drew Glackin passed away yesterday.

Drew was an omnipresent dude, either onstage or in the crowd at every great music show in New York (and beyond). I used to joke that Drew was in every band in New York City. The Silos were his main gig, but he also played with the Hold Steady, Chip Robinson, Jack Grace and everyone in between.

Including the New Heathens.

We last saw Drew on Dec. 13 at our gig at Hank’s Saloon in Brooklyn. Drew would always come out to hear us play there and, of course, we’d invite him up onstage to jam. We did “Abe Lincoln,” that Thursday night. Then we closed down the bar with him, same as always.

Drew had a thyroid problem for some time for which he didn't seek medical treatment, reportedly, because as a musician he had no health insurance. On New Year’s Day he walked into the hospital and hours later his heart stopped. Doctors revived him, then his heart stopped again. He was revived again, but irreparable damage was done.

I found out about what happened on Thursday and went to Methodist Hospital in Brooklyn to see Drew. I went to his bedside in the Intensive Care Unit and held his hand. It was very heavy, and very sad.

The fact that Drew played with us, and made an effort to come out to see us many times meant so much to me. He was a dude who played good music with the best musicians. Period. For him to come see my band and play with us was perhaps our highest compliment.

We’re going to miss Drew like hell. I told him three weeks ago at Hank’s Saloon that he is an honorary New Heathen. Wherever we are, whenever we play, he’s always welcome with us.

I told him that again in the hospital.

The offer still stands, brother.

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