WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepare a 2013 annual report for this blog.
Chris always found marketing and publicity to be a disgusting and dirty business. In many ways, it is. One might suggest that to focus, therefore, on the numbers that this memorial blog reached in 2013 to be craven, and disgusting, but I don’t quite see it that way.
A metaphor I’ve been rolling around in my brain over the past several days is this: When someone dies–I think particularly if they die young–who they were and how they lived is akin to a wave or a splash in the ocean. The impact that Chris and his music, his life and his death had on people was at first enormous. 25,000 people visited this blog in the first days after his death. 90 people wrote to tell us how much his beautiful spirit and his music meant to them. 700 people attended the funeral. In the sad and dark months that followed the inner circle of friends and family were continually heartened by the community of people that rushed to support us and to remember and memorialize Chris in words, in art and in music.
It’s impossible to know how you might, in your life, impact other people. My brother was genuinely self-effacing and humble, and I know he would have been floored to know the heartfelt, positive things that people said about him after he died. I wish he could have known and believed such sentiments in life. The waves of the magic Chris brought to the world in his 26 short years have continued to reverberate. Over 2012 and 2013, people continued to remember him, and write to us. We were pleased to see The Chad Tape sell out; the only thing Chris wanted to achieve was to make music, and to have that music reach and effect people. It did and it has. I’m sad that he didn’t live to release his solo work and watch it reach people, and I don’t understand metaphysics as much as I would like, but maybe where/whatever he is now knows and feels this?
Gold released the digital Losing Your Hair EP in 2012; Mammoth Cave records put out the vinyl 7″ EP this year. It’s bittersweet because the tracks were recorded by Chris and feature his drumming; the last thing he physically contributed to before moving on. Sadly, Gold broke up after the album came out, but some of the members are working on new projects together, and I look forward to hearing what they come up with in 2014.
We were moved beyond words when The Dodos Carrier came out in the summer, and we are grateful for the kind things that Meric and Logan have said about Chris in interviews this year.
Quickdraw Animation Society approached us late in the spring to ask about the possibility of a collaborative, animated tribute. A call for submissions has gone out and the deadline for notice of intent is January 15. The film is slated for completion in fall 2014. We’re very excited to see what people submit.
So the waves of response to my brother continue, smaller and slower but steady. I know that they will continue. But I also know that, as time continues inexorably forward, the mighty splash will gradually become a slower and shorter oscillation.
Some waves undergo a phenomenon called “breaking”. A breaking wave is one whose base can no longer support its top, causing it to collapse. A wave breaks when it runs into shallow water, or when two wave systems oppose and combine forces. When the slope, or steepness ratio, of a wave is too great, breaking is inevitable. Source: Wikipedia.
Life goes on, as it should and it must. Eventually the need to remember Chris Reimer will fade into the faintest ripple on a distant shore. Other musicians will break into and sustain public consciousness; other musicians will die and will be mourned. This is as it should be: we all live and die. After the initial phase of shock and mourning, life goes on as it did before, for most people at least.
This has been one of the hardest things for me to reconcile: That to the wider world and perhaps even to our wider community of friends, family, and artists, Chris will fade in importance. That people will forget him.
So I thank you for visiting and reading over 2013, and I thank you for remembering Chris.
Love to you and yours, and best wishes for 2014, wherever you are.
Here’s an excerpt of the blog report:
The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 10,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 4 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.