Rob Buck of 10,000 Maniacs has left the stage...

It’s a sad day in the land of the Maniacs.

I met Rob when 10kM played a free gig in Gaithersburg, MD about a year ago. He, like everyone else in the band, was very nice and very talented.

As the second link above notes, he is missed.


Fuck fuck fuck. Goddammit. Rob Buck was one of my heroes when I started playing the guitar. He had the greatest tone, among players of his genre, that I had ever heard. He (and John Lombardo) didn’t play guitar solos unless the songs called for it, and when he did, they were always tasteful.

I think I’ll listen to “In My Tribe” tonight.

This is tragic news. Liver failure is a bitch. Rob had training as an avocational archeologist but decided he could make more money with rock and roll. He did not sell out: the traditional approach to the fuzz boxes, programming, and effects helped changed the sound of rock. Listen to the shrieking bombs he creates in “MY MOTHER THE WAR”. Fucking chaos. Natalie was the upstate NY version of Bjork. What a great great band.

Ruthie are you out there?

The Maniacs in 1983 were heading up and own the East coast in a “short bus” painted green with “Sing Out With Joy” painted over the windshield. They were traveling with their first EP “Human Conflict #5”. A foldout album, they had the Time magazine picture of all these Army men, like a yearbook spread, “one weeks dead Vietnam 1968”. The Maniacs gave a shit. I met them in Richmond VA. They were playing all kinds of small clubs between their home in Jamestown NY and the new wave enclave of Athens Georgia (b52s, REM, etc etc). The stops included research triangle North Carolina, Charlottesville, etc. By 1987 they were on cover of Spin. They didn’t compromise however. Rob explained to me how Spin, at that time, was run by a businessman who was kind of cool. Not to spread rumors but he said he had a Tokemaster on a stand in his office. I’m rambling now but this is quite a loss.

Rick the anthropologist