I’ve been listening a lot lately to a record that I have rediscovered recently. It’s called “Makers”, by a Seattle-based singer/songwriter named Rocky Votolato. As far as I know, he had no association with Mark, but this record, to me, tell’s Mark’s story. It is a record rife with loss, hurt and pain. And of yielding, at last, to all the overwhelming dark forces that gather in the minds of those that suffer as Mark did. It’s not a happy record; and for some perhaps a tough listen. But it is also very empathetic, and soothing. It is, to me, a balm. Perhaps it makes it easier for me to understand what happened almost 4 years ago. For those seeking some solace, as the anniversary of Mark’s passing draws near, you may find some here…



“White Daisy Passing”


Tonight’s featured video is a great recent live performance of Someday I Will Treat You Good by Rob Williams and his band:

Rob used to front Richmond based Joe Buck Jr who covered the song back in 1996 on their debut album Used To Be Somebody…

“The cover was added at the last minute as Mark Linkous fell ill while on tour in Europe. The plan was for local bands to record versions of his songs to send to him in the hospital to let him know we were thinking of him. I don’t know if the tape was ever made for Mark, but we added our cover to the CD.”

In fact this would be the very first time an artist would release a Sparklehorse cover!

(I’m not counting Cracker’s Sick Of Goodbyes or Susanna Hoff’s Happy Place as both predate Mark’s own versions…)

Of course countless more covers have followed over the years…we have attempted to document all those to receive an official release in our Covers section…

Rob Williams’ latest solo album A Place In The Sun was released earlier in the year. Engineered and produced by John Morand at Sound Of Music; the record also features contributions from two more Sparklehorse alumni: Alan Weatherhead and Miguel Rodriguez-Urbiztondo…

Rob Williams

Wild Chorus

Back in February Anders Parker and Kendall Meade (aka Anders & Kendall) released their debut album as a duo “Wild Chorus” on Nine Mile Records:

Anders & Kendall

Among other musical endeavors Kendall toured extensively with Mark in 2001 as a member of the It’s A Wonderful Life era live Sparklehorse lineup.

Anders is probably best known as the main force behind Varnaline, a band that it just so happens opened twenty three shows for Sparklehorse on their Spring ’99 tour of North America…

If that’s not enough to pique your interest the album was engineered and mixed by Mark’s long time drummer and collaborator Scott Minor at Wild Chorus, Scott’s recently opened Knoxville studio after which the album is named…

Danny & The Nightmares

Daniel Johnston’s latest album Death Of Satan was released earlier this month on the Spanish label Munster Records:

Death Of Satan

Recorded five years ago with Waller friends Jason and Bridget, this is Daniel’s third full-length release as Danny And The Nightmares. Sadly, it will also be the last. Jason, who also produced the album, passed away in 2011 following a sudden illness aged just 36.

Back in 2007 the band contributed a wonderful cover of Most Beautiful Widow In Town to the Sparklehorse tribute album That Horse Yonder. The album which was curated and released by the mysterious Slight Records is long out of print but we are pleased to share Danny’s contribution here for a limited time only…

Danny & The Nightmares – Most Beautiful Widow:

Danny & The Nightmares – Most Beautiful Widow

Here’s a few words from Jason about the track:

“Recorded the song with Danny last night. I think you guys will like it. Danny really delivered a nice vocal track to our surprise. So far it’s vocals, the acoustic guitar, a farfisa organ, and bells. We’re gonna see if the quartet will do some string stuff on it this weekend. We thought it would be funny to take a sparse original and do a lavish cover version. Sort of like what SH do with Danny’s stuff.”

It would also be with The Nightmares that Daniel would share a live stage with Mark for the very first time when the band opened for Sparklehorse in Houston in September 2006.

The Proletariat, Houston, 2006

Watch out for a series of Golden Crows posts coming soon exploring the connections between these two great artists and sharing a few rarities along the way…

ambrosia parsley – “weeping cherry”

Today’s video features Sparklehorse friend and kindred spirit Ambrosia Parsley. Ambrosia was formerly in Shivaree and is perhaps best known for the song “Goodnight Moon”. After a far too long hiatus, Ambrosia has just released a fantastic EP called “i miss you. i do.” which features 3 great original tracks and covers of The Band’s “Whispering Pines” and Big Star’s “Nighttime”. Ms. Parsley also has a forthcoming LP called “Weeping Cherry” due in March 2013. Both are available through her Pledge Music campaign page here:

And here is the title track from “Weeping Cherry”