20 years since the untimely passing of Mic Christopher, in honour of his memory some of his closest friends revisit Heartbreaker – a Mary Janes song that never saw the light of day. You can stream/buy the tune here on Bandcamp and watch the video (made by Donal Scannel) on YouTube.
Mic Christopher had only just turned 32 when he slipped beyond the veil, into that timeless mysterious place beyond this earthly plane. His passing was sudden, leaving his family and friends broken and dumfounded: how could such a life force, such a bright, vibrant soul suddenly be no more? It made no sense, and here, 20 years on, we still feel that same baffling shock and sorrow.
What happens when in mid conversation fate steps in and steals your best friend away? Well, the conversation continues, somehow, although it’s changed completely; Mic is still a very real and present force to all assembled friends here, and we all hold the line open, even when the static fades.
How do we honour and remember him? We sing his songs… when words fail and fall short, we sing his words, in his melody, in his style, in his inimitable voice, we remember him by mirroring and mimicking the honourable rock star: hips out, head up, big voice, that high soaring tone, that swagger, courage, plume and strut, part Elvis, Jim, Fela, Marley, and Drake, to name a few from whom his cloth was cut. All we have now are his songs, the ones he recorded and others unfinished, incomplete beauties that we go back to, when a song is still in that first draught unfinished state, it holds a magic, an expectant potential, asking to be finished, all roads still open, to be pulled back out and re-examined. But when it’s author is no longer here to finish it, some might say leave it. And they might be right, but when the song was so near completion and so good that it already sang true and bright, the job might fall to his closest friends to pull it off the old cassette and back into the light.
We’ve gathered here his friends: Mary Janes, Frames, Kíla, Gemma, Lisa, Paddy, Mundy and many more; singers who knew and loved him, others who admired him from afar, to mark this, the 20th year of his departure, by simply doing the only good thing we know how to. We gather to honour our friend with our singing and playing.
Mic had the cool – whatever that is, he had it. And when I think of him now, it’s that broad-shouldered, long-fingered, sloping, stalling, desert boot-wearing, smiling silhouette I see walking just out of reach. Go Mic… we still believe in you.
“May your heart always be joyful, may your song always be sung, And may you stay forever young’” Glen Hansard