Friday on My Mind: Songs for Our Friends at KOMO News

photo courtesy of KOMO News

It’s time again for Friday on My Mind. Our weekly blog post where we look at videos centered around one common theme. This is a collaborative effort between KEXP and King 5 News.

We here at KEXP want to reach out and offer our support and condolences to the KOMO News team who suffered an awful tragedy earlier this week. KOMO, who are our neighbors and colleagues in media, lost two members of their family as a result of tragic helicopter accident. On Tuesday morning, KOMO pilot Gary Pfitzner and longtime KOMO news photographer Bill Strothman lost their lives while doing what they loved when the news helicopter that they were attempting to fly, crashed from the top of Fisher Plaza onto three vehicles below. Seattle resident Richard Newman was driving the car that the helicopter fell upon, and is in serious condition and currently preparing to undergo surgery in order to treat the burns he sustained from the crash. The drivers of the other two vehicles involved escaped with no injuries. The accident is being investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board in order to understand what caused the tragedy. This week our hearts go out to KOMO and we would like to offer comfort in a way that we know how to do best and that is through music. This week we’ve gathered songs that we find comforting during times of loss.

Jeff Buckley - Hallelujah

Jeff Buckley’s rendition of “Hallelujah” has become synonymous with loss here at KEXP both as a song choice of our DJs and as a request from listeners. Although many associate Buckley with the song, it was originally written and performed by Leonard Cohen. Cohen struggled to write the song over many years and during that time he penned at least 80 different verses for the song. It wasn’t until 1984 that he was able to edit the lyrics to the point that the song was a more standard duration of time. In fact, when John Cale performed a version of the song for the Leonard Cohen tribute concert and album, I’m Your Fan, Cohen provided Cale with 15 pages worth of lyrics so that he could choose the lyrics he preferred. Now here is footage of Jeff Buckley performing the song:


Sia - Breathe Me

Another song we’ve come to associate with loss is “Breathe Me” by Australian singer-songwriter, Sia. Taken from her album, Colour the Small One, “Breathe Me” has been licensed for use in many different movies and shows, and in fact was used brilliantly during the final episode and scene of Six Feet Under. The video director, Daniel Askill, in the past had directed music videos for artists such as Phoenix and UNKLE among many others. The “Breathe Me” video was shot over the span of three days in a London based hotel. Over 2,500 polaroid stills were used for the filming. Check out the final product here:


DeVotchKa - How It Ends

From DeVotchKa’s 2004 album How It Ends, our next song is emotional “How It Ends”. This song has proven to be a comforting soundtrack during times of mourning. DeVotchKa performed a version of this song during a KEXP in studio session back in 2008, which landed on our LIVE at KEXP, Vol. 5.


Honorable Mention

Band of Horses- The Funeral

Band of Horses’ “The Funeral” is from their 2006 debut album, Everything All the Time.

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