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09/14/17: News item I saw today said that Grant Hart, drummer and co-songwriter for punk rock band Hüsker Dü, had passed away. It seems that we're losing musicians at a faster clip lately, which kind of makes sense I guess, seeing as how none of us is getting any younger, and the rigors of a rock 'n' roll lifestyle will eventually take their toll.
     I was never a big fan of Hüsker Dü, but years ago, on the strength of a glowing review (possibly in Trouser Press) I bought a cassette of their then-current release Warehouse: Songs and Stories. This was back when I would buy pre-recorded cassettes of things that I figured I would listen to primarily in the car. I think I listened to it once through and put it away. There were a few songs on there that I thought were not bad, but overall I was disappointed, especially after the high praise heaped on the album in that review.
     Not long after, Hüsker Dü broke up, and the other songwriter in the band, Bob Mould, released a few albums that I found to be more accessible than the Hüsker Dü one I bought. I don't know if I heard anything more from Hart, although I now see that he's had a number of releases in the years since the band broke up. In that time, however, I occasionally saw references to the Warehouse album, almost unanimously in positive terms. Sometimes when I would run across a mention of it, I would pull the tape out and give it another listen. I don't think I ever listened to it more than once through before again putting it away, many times not even listening to all the tracks.
     But then a funny thing happened. A year or two ago, I put Warehouse on my phone to listen to (having converted the cassette to MP3 many years ago) and discovered that I recognized almost all of the 20 tracks, to the point where I was singing along with many of them. And I looked up the album on the web and found that a few of the songs I liked best ("Charity, Chastity, Prudence, and Hope" and "She Floated Away") were actually Grant Hart compositions. I don't know that my musical tastes have changed all that much, or if just by giving it a listen ever few years, the album has grown on me, but I think I finally see what prompted all those positive reviews. And that makes Grant Hart's passing a little sadder to me.



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