Yesterday I made it a point not to write anything about the 10th anniversary of Elliott Smith’s death. I wrote things to myself and stashed them away all while playing through XO, Figure 8, Elliott Smith, Either/Or and the albums that were released after his death. I didn’t want to pretend I had any extra knowledge to offer the world since I didn’t. However I will say Pitchfork and Spin put out two amazing pieces about the singer.
Elliott has always been that artist that you can’t shake. Everything he’s written always manages to find its way back into your life because it’s, well, just that good. And to write about him on his anniversary is to put a part of yourself out there for everyone. But there’s comfort in numbers they say. And I was really moved by last night’s Elliott Smith tribute concert in Brooklyn.
Even though the artists had to read lyrics from a piece of paper, they still did a great job of channeling the late singer and I hope you’ll take the time to check out a few of their performances.
Luke Temple, singer for New York’s Here We Go Magic, covered a handful of Elliott Smith songs last night. “Needle in the Hay” was sad and powerful and “Thirteen” originally by Big Star but covered by Elliott quite a few times was hauntingly nostalgic in that Elliott way.
Both are below.
“Needle in the Hay”:
Sky Ferreira and Cole Smith from DIIV took the stage following Marissa Nadler and Why?’s Yoni Wolf but the headliner was Cat Power’s Chan Marshall. Marshall donned a hat similar to the one Elliott often wore, and I thought she did a great job.
Here’s her performance: