An Open Letter to The Afghan Whigs

Dear Guys,

Everyone who loves music, and especially everyone who loves live music (which I have come to realize is not everyone) has that band. We own all the music, wear the t-shirts, watch the videos, stalk the set lists. We have the band or artist we will go out of our way to see.

For me, that band is you.

And, after making my second trip to Cincinnati to see you play a live show, I just have to drop you a note of thanks. If logistics allowed, I would take in more than one show per tour, and maybe next tour I will get that lucky. But this tour, I only got one show.

Thanks for leaving it all out on the stage.

Since I discovered you, which by most accounting is fairly late (cough*2014*cough), you have been my obsession and my catharsis, my chemical and my comfort. Especially, of course, in frontman Greg Dulli, who speaks to darkness not in order to banish it, but instead to show us that we are not alone in the darkness.

For better or worse.

I bought a VIP ticket to the show in Cincy because it was the only one I could attend, which in addition to admission to the show also got me a t-shirt, a tote, a poster that you all signed, and admission to the sound check. Thanks for doing “Demon in Profile,” with Greg on vocals. Nothing against Har Mar; he’s got a great set of pipes. But I’m glad I got your take on it.

I just want to thank you, pretty much for everything you do. Thank you, first of all, for letting us into your grief for Dave Rosser. He is sorely missed by your fans, and I can only imagine the way you all are grieving him.

And thank you, most of all, for giving everything you have, during every show that you perform. The night I saw you, you came out of the gate on fire, and you didn’t let up. I was the barrier chick in the gold lame, dancing and singing to every. damn. song. (John Curley saw me.)

Patrick is a beast on drums – some might say, an animal – and has a rare smile that is real and warm when it appears.

Jon Skibic has serious chops, and a lean guitar player aesthetic that is widely appreciated.

Rick is immensely, immeasurably talented. And has the most beautiful eyes.

John Curley anchors the Whigs with his solid bass playing. I have encountered Curley offstage at each of the three shows I have attended, and he has been the sweetest, loveliest man.

Me and Curley
Ladies and gentlemen, John Curley.

And, of course, our muse, our main man, our savior of misbehavior Greg Dulli. Thank you for doing what you do, and please continue to prowl the stage in all your virile glory.


We have to take these times, these events, these days to celebrate what we love. When each day can bring news like we got early yesterday morning, when each day can take our heroes from us (R.I.P. Tom Petty), it’s especially important to show our appreciation.

Thank you, Afghan Whigs, for being that band, not just for me, but for all your fans. Thanks for continuing to make music and go on tour.

We’ll be there. I’ll be there, as often as I can be.


10 thoughts on “An Open Letter to The Afghan Whigs

      1. Not the ‘Mats, they were a band I really loved and had no hope of seeing until they did the surprise reunion (then break-up). For the last decade or so for me it has been the Mighty Mighty Bosstones. Boston is a second home to me so their “local” songs resonate. Then there are the songs about personal stuff that hits me in the gut. and the song “Someday I Suppose” simply keeps getting more and more relevant to me as I get older.

  1. As a lovely bit of serendipity, I recall seeing you at this show (your outfit stood out). I have lived in Pittsburgh for 16 years but I grew up in Cincinnati and The Whigs were just a band everyone knew and saw. I went “home” to see this show with the guy that introduced them to me in 1991 and it was like being a tourist in my own youth.

    1. That is so great! While I do wish AW came to Pittsburgh more often, the drive to Cincinnati is not a difficult one, and I kind of enjoy it.

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