I’m not going to pretend I knew Eyedea.
Nor am I going to go on and on about his music now, now that he’s dead, as though his work is only relevant after he’s no longer alive.
Both are disrespects that happen far too often when someone dies: posthumous claims to relationships, posthumous recognition. Fuck that.
But I can’t deny that I’ve been moved by Eyedea’s death. Eyedea was only 28 years old. He’s much younger than me, but he was able to communicate his thoughts, feelings, frustrations, confusions, difficulties, all the struggles of life in a way I’ve never heard before.
I describe his work as “raw,” but that almost doesn’t do his work justice, since that word is watered-down from overuse.
Simply put, Eyedea just said it as it is. Rather than try to get all poetic about subjects, he’d spit, “never been held in anyone’s arms/ when you’ve never been moved it’s really hard to move on.” By being upfront, he probably made a lot of listeners uncomfortable. I know that’s how I felt when I first heard the album “E&A.”
But something fresh and surprising happened in “By The Throat.” It’s something, even after listening to it a ton, that I can’t quite grasp.
As I said, I’m not going to pretend that I knew Eyedea, but the way he communicated his inner self so whole-heartedly, like he ripped off his skin and skeleton and poured it all into every breath of every song… it made me feel like I wasn’t alone.
And that’s enough.
Enough reason to feel deeply thoroughly moved by his death. And that, in only February of this year, I saw him give a passionate performance of his new work with Abilities in a little club in Vancouver, up close and personal.
Eyedea: Thank you for your brave words, your honest delivery, and for being a real artist through-and-through, never giving a fuck what other people wanted or expected.
Rest In Peace.