On the 9th of December, 2002, Mary Hansen died.
It was a cycling accident, in London.
For those of you who don't know, Mary was a vocalist/guitarist with Stereolab. She masterfully provided the offset harmonies that supported the melodies sung by lead singer Laetitia Sadier.
This is very sad indeed. The whole magic of Stereolab was in the subtle complexity of interwoven harmonies and melodies. The music was written in a style that considered the human voice to be just another instrument. This allowed for a much more vibrant group dynamic.
I saw Mary and the group a handful of times, and it won't be the same without her. There's no word yet from the group on whether they plan to continue.
I talked with koly today - he runs ultra-high frequency, the unofficial stereolab site - and we were discussing ways for the Peng! list members to pay their respects. I've suggested we sponsor a community garden in Mary's home town in Australia. If anyone has any other ideas, please get in touch.
A sad, sad day.