Ralph News, baby!
James Muretich - Heaven Just Got A Little Noisier

Oct. 21st, 2006
Vancouver, BC

James Muretich

James Muretich, one of Canada's greatest rock writers, passed away in his sleep this past weekend. I knew him since the early 80s and remember fondly my first visit to Calgary with James Muretich as my guide. He was the man and everyone knew it. He took me to 8Ft Henry's (a legendary DIY punk club) and I ended up doing lights for a local band I fell in love with and tried to sign to Attic Records (where I was at the time).

As I got deeper into the grey blandness of the record industry, Muretich made no bones about giving me a reality check. I eventually stopped doing promotion and became a drone and we lost touch.
However, in the 90s, when I left Toronto for Vancouver to become a beatnik and started touring, our paths crossed again. The new bald headed Muretich lived his life to the fullest, chasing me around the Night Gallery trying to grab my crotch (I think he grabbed poor Tom Harrison's crotch, affecting his performance as my bongoist that night) and kiss me (maybe he did).

He pushed you. He prodded you. The gauntlet was always thrown down.... if you shrank and skittered off, you know you had let him down. He was the famous uncle, the cool older brother, the encouraging dad.

He lived it. He wrote it. He was more rock and roll than half the people he wrote about. I don't know how he did it - but his writing was brilliant - bristling and crackling with more life than a warehouse full of every Canadian rock mag ever published. He, most of all, knew that Canadian rock is a sham at best and his duty was to shake out and build up the bands and musicians he thought could stand beside his own heroes, and bully everyone else to really aspire for better.

He was only 54 years old. He sent me an email this past June from the hospital. It sounded like this was all just a blip - nothing would stop him. Well, you know what, it hasn't. He's kicking some angel butt right now. God bless him.

Back to the news

© 1997 - 2024, Ralph. All rights reserved.
Designed and programmed by Brainrub.com