Yesterday, we learned that Dave Lamb of Providence’s beloved folk duo Brown Bird passed away after a long battle with leukemia. The singer had been in remission, but the disease recently recurred. He was 35.
The prolific Lamb, along with partner MorganEve Swain, among other Brown Bird collaborators, released several records over the course of his too-short career, with each earning increased international acclaim. Brown Bird played the Newport Folk Festival for the first time in 2011, and were known for their mesmerizing live show. After attending a 2009 performance, OurStage’s Rainy Logan wrote:
Brown Bird never ceases to give me chills. Usually, I see them perform as a three piece, but on this night they were five members, adding Maine-based Jerusha and Jeremy Robinson to the lineup. Many tracks from the brand new album The Devil Dancing made their way into the set. Sprinkled with their signature moody folk and bluegrass sound, tempo changes and thoughtful lyrics, the freshest songs also featured more polyrhythmic vocal lines than some of the older ones. David, the band’s primary vocalist, predominately interacted with MorganEve and Jerusha in complex and interesting melodies and harmonies. I also felt like they were flat out singing louder than normal. It was truly exciting.
Dave Lamb and his rare talent, and by all accounts his good nature, will be greatly missed. Listen to some of his music today, and read Swain’s statement regarding the loss below.
April 5th, 2014
Over the past year, and especially this past week, I have been so overwhelmed and grateful for the amount of love that has surrounded Dave and me throughout our life and career together. You all have posted so many beautiful stories about Dave- how humble he was, how gracious, how talented…He certainly was all those things.
Four days after Dave and I met we became bandmates, lovers and business partners, and set the tone for what our life would be for the next six years. We never imagined the amount of success we would enjoy in those years, how many incredible friendships would be forged, the experiences we would share, and nothing could have prepared us for the events of this past year.
Dave entered the battle with leukemia as only Dave could- determined, steadfast, smiling and always with his mind on our future. His incredible ability to continue writing through his struggle is something I’ll forever aspire to.
This week was the toughest in the battle, as Dave’s body began to shut down under the stress of a year-long fight and a sudden and aggressive leukemic relapse.
Today, surrounded by his family and so many friends, Dave peacefully let go.
Thank you for all the love you’ve all shown us. It helped so very much to know we had an army behind us.
Love and gratitude,