Endless Loop: Goodbye Horses

qlazzarusHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“Goodbye Horses” by Q Lazzarus

The story goes that sometime during the mid-‘80s, late, great director Jonathan Demme was riding in a taxi in New York City.  During the ride, the cabbie played her demo tape for the him, and the director was apparently so taken with the music that he ended up using her work in several of his films, most notably (and perhaps a little notoriously) in 1991’s Silence of the Lambs.  Yeah.  You know the scene I’m talking about.  That one with Buffalo Bill.

And so, I was introduced to the haunting and swaying “Goodbye Horses” by the mysterious Q Lazzarus.

Beginning with a propulsive synth pop beat and little twinges of electric sound, there’s something immediately melancholy about the song, a notion that’s only reinforced once the warm and sweeping synthesizers hum and underscore the artist’s deep and almost mournfully yearning vocals.  There’s an inherent sadness to the whole affair, a kind of soaring fragility, but it also practically begs to be moved to.  “Goodbye Horses” wants to be danced to, even if only by yourself, alone and in your bedroom, tucked or not, but with your eyes closed and your heart open and feeling.  It’s like the sonic equivalent of letting the surf or the sun’s rays wash right over you.

Then, everything fades out, and we’re left with fleeting pangs and feelings.  It’s really kind of a shame that we never got more music from Q Lazzarus.  Aside from a couple of tracks, a few different mixes of “Goodbye Horses,” and a Talking Heads cover, the artist kind of dropped off the face of the Earth in the early ‘90s.  Rumors circulated that she was dead, overdosed or murdered, and nary a hint nor word from the enigmatic Q.

Until now.

Following a recent article in Dazed Digital about the missing artist, writer and musician Kelsey Zimmerman asked if anyone had heard from Q Lazzarus on Twitter (apparently something she does once a year), and actually received a reply.  As it turns out, Q Lazzarus is alive and well.  Her name is Diane, she’s a bus driver in New York, and she has no desire to sing anymore.  Bummer.  But also far out.  She has her life and we have ours, and we’ll always have our memories of “Goodbye Horses”…and Buffalo Bill.

“Goodbye horses, I’m flying over you.”


Thomas H Williams

Thomas H Williams

From a bunker somewhere in Central Texas, Thomas H. Williams spends most of his time with his wife, his two sons, and his increasingly neurotic dog. He listens to a lot of music, drinks a lot of excellent beers, and gets out from time to time. For even more shenanigans, visit heavenisanincubator.blogspot.com.

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