My friend and former bandmate Brian Grosz passed away a couple weeks ago and I’ve been at a loss for words. I met Brian through a mutual friend when we started a sloppy punk cover band called Fucking Bullshit. I hadn’t played drums in over a decade, and I remember Brian’s initial critique was to “pick up the pace a few BPM”. I believe “asshole” was how I first described him to friends, but it wasn’t long before he won me over with his sardonic wit. Brian had a way with words, to be sure. I will forever remember him describing his look as “white Danny Trejo” and I was honored to be referred to as an “ascerbic son of a bitch”.
I only recently learned the extent and severity of Brian’s struggles with alcoholism. Not long after our band dissolved, I went through recovery to quit drinking, while Brian moved to Austin to get a fresh start. I bought his book and he bought my record, but I wish I had kept better contact with him. I remember his encouraging email when I was in rehab, and re-reading his inscription to me in Squalor is even more bittersweet now.
I’m grateful to Brian’s friends and family who continuously reached out to him with love and support, even if he eschewed it. Depression and addiction are stubborn beasts, and the stigmas around them are fucking bullshit.
I promise to stay clean, brother. Happy birthday. Rest in power.