Reminder: Love Land Listening Party Is Tonight


John Spalding with Andrea Zollo

It's at Gainsbourg (which is in Greenwood), starts at 8 p.m. and is free, though 10% of food/drink sales will be donated to the John Spalding Memorial Fund in memory of John, who made music under the name Love Land. For most of us, tonight will be the first time it'll be possible to hear the album in its entirety. And now, a few words from Gainsbourg proprietor, KEXP DJ and Rocket Queen columnist Hannah Levin on why she's hosting the event and what John meant to her: DJs spinning tonight include Minus the Bear's Erin Tate, Helms Alee's Ben Verellen and Born Anchors' Jason Parker.

"The primary and practical reason is simply to raise a little more cash to put towards the memorial fund and give folks an opportunity to finally buy the CD. The personal reason is that meeting John Spalding and forging the brief friendship I shared with him was one of the more moving experiences I've had as a journalist and a DJ."

"John showed up one night down at KEXP just before my show started and left me an unmastered and unsequenced copy of the CD with a very sweet and straightforward note, explaining who he was, who played on the record and the fact that he had about 2 months to live. I usually have a month-long backlog of CDs I need to listen to, but for obvious reasons, I chose not to wait. I played "Girl Get Pride" that night on my show, took the CD home, and couldn't stop listening to it. John and I began chatting via phone and email, not just about making the record, but about our preferred methods for roasting chickens, Mediterranean food in general, bands we loved, and what looking down the barrel of death does to a person. I interviewed him in person as soon as I could to tell his story in my column and pushed his CD pretty hard on my colleagues at the station so that he'd get some more airplay beyond my show before he passed."

"Sadly, John's estimate of his remaining time was quite accurate, and the last time I saw him was when I had him into the station one night to talk about the making of the record. He was brave as hell, smart as a whip and one of the most astonishingly peaceful and compassionate people I've ever met. It breaks my heart that our friendship was so brief, but I'm damn grateful to have had the chance to know him."

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