As part of a series called “Remembering Jason Molina,” I’m collecting stories about Jason and his impact on songwriters, musicians, and music writers. These are all individual tributes, on how Jason has affected their music, their perception of music, or just anecdotes on meeting him or seeing him live. Each story is posted to promote the new album Farewell Transmission: The Music of Jason Molina, which not only celebrates Jason’s music, but will also help the Molina family and MusiCares with its proceeds.
Ben Lubeck of Farewell Milwaukee provided a great cover of Jason’s “Leave The City” for Farewell Transmission, and has contributed a few words for this Molina remembrance project.
The first time I heard Jason Molina I was with my friend Brian Kurbis. He put on Magnolia Electric Co. on a beautiful summer day and I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. It was one of those lovely surprises in which you’re thrilled that you were let in on this new band, but at the same time disappointed that you had missed out on their music for so long. Once I got my hands on that record I couldn’t put it down. It was in my car CD player nearly the entire summer.
I remember the excitement of driving to visit my girlfriend in Omaha, a six hour drive from Minneapolis, and finally pulling into her driveway. She had gone home for the summer and I hadn’t seen her in months so naturally the anticipation was killing me. But when I pulled into her parents’ driveway, “Hold On Magnolia” came on and I sat and listened to the entire 7 minute song. It hypnotized me and ripped my heart out. Took me to a different place. Absolutely gorgeous. Jason’s music does that for me. It floors me. Makes me stop what I’m doing and really listen. Not many things can do that. I’m honored to be part of this album. The fact that I was able to interpret his song “Leave The City” is a true privilege.
— Ben Lubeck
Purchase Farewell Transmission: The Music of Jason Molina: Amazon; iTunes
Jason Molina: Website; Secretly Canadian; Graveface Records
Magnolia Electric Co.: Website; Secretly Canadian; Facebook
Farewell Milwaukee: Website; Facebook; Twitter; Bandcamp
Ben Lubeck: Facebook; Twitter