Monday, July 07, 2008

Indieobit: Noel Sayre

Noel Sayre, the violinist with The Black Swans and Pretty Mighty Mighty has died in a swimming accident.

The 37 year-old also had an impressive classical cv, having played with the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra and the Portsmouth Symphony Orchestra, but it was in the folkier end of indie where he really made his presence felt. Pretty Mighty Mighty toured extensively during the early 90s; in 1994, he and Jerry DeCicca formed The Black Swans, debuting just as the year ended, as DeCicca remembers:

Noel and I began playing music together on New Years Eve of 1995, opening a show for the Yips and the Bassholes at Bernies Bagels in Columbus, Ohio. We split $100 for that gig, and so began a partnership that quickly became a strong and lasting friendship that the Black Swans based themselves upon.

We were always more Heckle & Jeckle and Penn & Teller than Simon & Garfunkel, as we shared an idea about music as art, posing as entertainment, that we explored over hundreds of gigs and several recordings. Musically, I always stood in Noel’s shadow and Noel always felt he was my shadow. We spoke in code, a short-hand, that sometimes alienated others and sometimes amused them. We were kindred spirits in many way and couldn’t be more different in others. He was quiet and articulate, rowdy and beyond shy, hyper intelligent and incredibly dense.

A memorial service has been organised for July 12th.