March 16, 2007, - 6:01 pm

Brad Delp of “Boston,” R.I.P.

By Debbie Schlussel
Can’t let the week get away without commenting on the suicide of “Boston” lead singer Brad Delp.
I don’t know much about him or his politics (so forgive me if he was a raving lefty and I didn’t mention it). But I do know that Delp was a talented vocalist and that Boston is one of my favorite rock groups from the ’80s. Boston songs are uplifting and catchy and, even though I have very eclectic musical taste, Boston remains among my favorites and part of my workout music.
My favorite “Boston” song is, “Long Time,” particularly these lyrics:

I’ve got to keep on chasin’ a dream;
I’ve gotta be on my way . . . .
There’s a long road, I’ve gotta stay in time with;
I’ve got to keep on chasin that dream, though I may never find it.

braddelpboston.jpgbostonrockgroup2.jpg

Brad Delp, Boston Lead Singer, R.I.P.

It’s sad that someone like that with so much talent gave up on life. Many washed up groups from the ’80s have made a semi-comeback playing smaller clubs and earning a pretty decent living. And “Boston” was one of those groups. They had very decent tour dates and locales. Too bad for “Boston” that the group has now lost the great voice that gave its equally great guitar/keyboard/drum-heavy combination its crowning touch. And Brad Delp’s kids have lost a Dad.
He left a suicide note, saying he was a lost soul. So sad that someone whose talents were so uplifting to others, was himself so incurably depressed.
Brad Delp, Rest in Peace.

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22 Responses

debbie don’t forget that boston was one of the first groups to say FU to the there record company over royality and they won it took about 6 years but they set the example that they would not be bully around.

PNAMARBLE on March 16, 2007 at 7:19 pm

Bradley was a friend of mine since back in Jr. High School. He was a down-to-earth, nice guy long before he attained celebrity and that never changed after he did.
Debbie, you might also give a lesson to a cd Brad and ‘Boston’ bandmate, Barry Goudreau put out about a year ago called Delp/Goudreau. In my opinion, it was his best ever work. Particularly a song that he penned called “What You Leave Behind”.
You left much and I will miss you my friend!

zymrgist on March 16, 2007 at 7:51 pm

    zymrgist, if you really knew him, can you tell me if he was Christian? Or if he went to church when you guys were in school? I will greatly appreciate your response.

    EvanJ on August 21, 2010 at 10:40 pm

THATíS WHAT happens to people who try to live in this worldÖwithout GodÖor as if there is no GodÖthere is no meaning in life apart from Him.
HE WAS from that era that put ROCK STARS on a pedestal and he happily climbed that mountain, and made his contribution to that false ideology. He grabbed some pretty good ìlootî along the way, but eventually those ìprizesî revealed their emptiness to him.
Isnít that THE IRONY, his ìlootî by its failure to satisfy him, actually told him, ìÖDonít look for meaning here!î
Man cannot supplant God, or His intentions for us.
BUILD A BETTER world here for yourself, and othersÖif you mustÖbut that is not the final meaning.
And so all idols are eventually smashed.
He was a true LEFTIST and followed that USELESS ideology to its natural end~
Say, ìHiî to John Lennon for usñ
NOW REAP your reward, along with all those others, who helped lead a generation away from God.

The Canadien on March 16, 2007 at 8:05 pm

I heard the news at 7:45 PST last Friday, 3/09/07. It came as a shock to me. Boston was the first rock band that I really became fanatical about at the impressionable, young age of just 8! My next door neighborís older sister was a big fan and had the first Boston LP from 1976 and me and my neighbor from next door would sneak up into her room and play the record when she was away. I was absolutely mesmerized by the sound; a very distinct and unique sound that was created by Tom Scholz and Barry Goudrieaux and lyricized by the incredible voice of Bradley Delp. My mom and dad had a garage sale one Saturday and gave me the money from any and all junk that I was willing to part with. I took the money and purchased the 1st Boston LP, just 3 months before the 2nd LP, ìDonít Look Backî was released in the Spring of 1978. Needless to say, I had to beg my mom and dad to buy me that album if I promised to never ever fight with my brother again. Lucky for me, I was able to close them on something so implausable. Where most kids in my formative years found their rock geekistry in Kiss, mine was with Boston. It wasnít until 1995 that I was able to witness Boston perform live at Irvine Meadows Ampitheater in Laguna Hills, CA; the one and only time I ever saw them perform. The only original members in the band were Brad Delp and Tom Scholz, but it didnít matter to me; the music was timeless. Tonight, I remember fondly the great voice of Bradley Delp, and celebrate his contribution to rock music.

Yiddish Steel on March 16, 2007 at 9:16 pm

Brad lived in New Hampshire, and was known as genuinely good guy. After his shows, he would hang out and talk to his fans. There was no hint of a rock star ego. He was just a guy doing what he liked to do. When Manchester Policeman Michael Briggs was gunned down last October, Brad quickly organized a benefit show.
He was to be married this summer. His last band project, Beatlejuice, was setting up for a show when they were were told about his death.
I don’t know about his political views, but I know he was happiest when he was playing music. I’m glad I got to see him play in a small club in Manchester. He will be missed. There are so many people who would have done anything to help him overcome whatever drove him to take his own life.

MarkWillard on March 16, 2007 at 9:23 pm

I first want to say to “The Canadien”…um…you go to rock concerts with Jesus signs don’t you? I think you should look at your horrifically cruel words…look at yourself in the mirror…and see who the real “sinner” is…and then get a life…seriously…it would do you good.
I want to say that I find this so sad. I saw Brad Delp in Beatle Juice last August opening for Lou Gramm. Not only was the band really great but Brad Delp was so nice and down to earth. It’s sad to know that he was so depressed…that he couldn’t see past that moment where everything seems so terrible. I read something that said he was really down on himself…I can’t imagine why, I really can’t. He had such a presence and impacted so many people…I wish he knew that. Anyway, I am truly, truly saddened by his passing. I do have amazing memories from that show. What I remember the most…his kind smile.

artistgirl on March 16, 2007 at 11:45 pm

BEING A ìdown-to-earth, nice guyî just wasnít enough to get Brad through his own ìdark night of the soulî.
Mr. ìEasy-goingî was really Mr. Deeply Troubled.
Sorry, artistgirlÖbut Iím sure youíll excuse anything he did. GROUPIES are like that.
NEWSFLASH!! He WAS JUST a musician, and Iím sick of morons putting these guys on pedestalsÖwhich they repeatedly fall down from.
Artistgirl, donít even compare Brad to anything about JesusÖthat just tells me how completely ignorant you are. And I can see, youíve missed more than just one boatñ
BUT NOW since the great, idolized, PAGAN rock musician superstar, Brad Delp has picked charcoal-burning as his way to exit this life, youíll see additional groupies, nilheads and other assorted losers committing more of these now ìtrendy suicidesî.
Thatís what Iím concerned about, the impressionable dummies presently in existential crisis.
Youíre gone now BradÖbut now youíve left an unexpected and eerie legacy.
Long popular in Asia as a method of suicide, charcoal-burning suicide was virtually unknown in the AmericasÖuntil a few days ago.
Thanks Brad!
Again for taking the easy way out!!
And for showing the ìunbalancedî an easier way to do it ñ

The Canadien on March 17, 2007 at 11:06 am

Canadien, you are truly an a**hole. I have no other words for you and will never read another post from you. Go have another drink.

nyone on March 17, 2007 at 1:26 pm

Canadien, what do you know about Jesus?
I’m guessing he would have shown a little compassion for Brad.

PHEDUPP on March 17, 2007 at 2:24 pm

canadien –
You are the one who has missed the boat. You have no clue what being a Christian is. You spend so much time and energy on feeling superior, you didn’t notice that you’ve lost what’s important. You can’t follow Christ without a heart.

Stealthkix on March 17, 2007 at 4:42 pm

Canadien, I don’t know how you live with yourself. All that vitriol bottled up inside you can’t be healthy. I say that you have proven yourself to be an object of pity rather than the voice of righteousness that you no doubt see yourself as…
As for Brad…RIP bro. Thanks for all the tunes and the memories.

Lonevoice on March 17, 2007 at 8:41 pm

I sure hope this helps some of Hollyweird’s worst find their way to end it all.
RIP Brad Delp. ANyone know someone personally who chose to end it all?

warpmine on March 17, 2007 at 10:18 pm

I sure hope this helps some of Hollyweird’s worst find their way to end it all.
RIP Brad Delp. Anyone know someone personally who chose to end it all?

warpmine on March 17, 2007 at 10:20 pm

I don’t feel sorry for him, what’s the big deal? He didn’t suffer any tragedy, he just made his family suffer it. And all because he couldn’t hang around a few years and DIE ANYWAY?? What a moron.

davidlanham on March 17, 2007 at 10:48 pm

Canadien ~ you need a little reminder.
The Greatest Commandment:
The first is, “Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.” The second is this, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these. (NRSV, Mark 12:26-31)
Your neighbor IS everyone on this earth, in one way or another.
“Anyone know someone personally who chose to end it all?” warpmine asks… I’ll step up to the plate and take a swing.
I knew someone who chose to end it all. A husband of a good friend ; young, so talented, everything to live for… none of us saw it coming. His wife was the one who found his body.
Yes, suicide leaves a legacy of pain with loved ones, and always more questions than answers.
Then, my mother – seven years ago diagnosed with terminal
ALS (Lou Gehrigs’ Disease) – asking me to “help” her when the
end she feared so much came near – choosing me because she knew of my life-long struggle with depression. Felt probably I had some secret suicide techniques to ease her passage.
I refused my own mother… because I’ve come to believe there is NO easy way out of this life. I’ve “evolved” from living the “pagan” life Canadien finds so despicable, to a deep personal faith in God’s love…
Yet knowing of God’s love still never guarantees that I love myself every day… I’m not that perfect, have not achieved that wonderful peace.
I cannot afford anything but compassion towards those who fell, jumped, or possibly… were pushed over the edge.
In fact, Canadien, you seem to believe that terrible abyss exists only in the minds of the spiritually decadent and weak-willed.
You insult the millions of good and moral people who have experienced the “dark night of the soul” and found themselves at a loss for words to explain their world of pain and at a loss
for somewhere to turn for help.
Yes – “easy-going” often covers up “deeply-troubled”. Why does
that move you to contempt and ridicule, Canadien? Do you know
for certain that a fate such as my mother’s doesn’t await you?
She faced all her life’s trials with amazing courage – until her
diagnosis of terminal illness.
How dare you judge another’s life? Only God reserves that right. Canadien… despite your oh-so-authoritative oratory, please remember that ONLY GOD has ALL THE FACTS.
Question: The “black abyss” still calls on me with the persistence of a collection agency from Hell – but time and time again I’ve hung up on that number.
Have I refused to “go through with it” all these years because of courage…. or cowardice?
If my mother had been in terrible physical pain, it would have been much harder to refuse her request to help her end her life. It was spiritual doubt and fear that motivated her. We eased her mind and spirit as much as possible, and she died in May of 2000; a natural death as much as one could call such a death “natural” or dignified. Again, courage or cowardice?
Canadien, although you’ve been a close personal friend of mine
for more than two years, your savage attacks on the character
or actions of anyone who doesn’t meet your self-righteous standards are deeply offensive to me.
Pinko bleeding heart, that’s me, if you like… but SORRY, I didn’t
notice any special halo over your head when we first met.
And surely I must have missed the OBVIOUS SIGNS that you’re God’s personal emmissary on Earth!
I’ll try looking harder, but these items seem pretty elusive to me.
Like your sense of compassion.
“You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your neighbor’s eye”
(NRSV, Matthew 7:1-5)

Cyanide Girl on March 18, 2007 at 6:03 am

Well, something about this article has touched a nerve for a few of us DS bloggers, hasn’t it? I think we all might just chill a bit–not that the posts aren’t provocative, but take anyone’s words written the wrong time on an anonymous blog and you can end up with a harsh conclusion.
The news about Delp taking his life was a bit of shock to me. I still don’t understand about the method of his suicide–I guess I need to read some more. I would never have been able to tell you who the lead singer of Boston even was–but I sure have loved that music and it definitely impacted me somehow–hard to say exactly how–just that it always made you stop and ponder quite a bit and you always wanted to hear it again. It was that good. I remember when I was only 18 listening to a cassette repeatedly on vacation–and even my Dad who could care less about rock music said he really liked “that tape.”
Now to Candien–I’m not prepared to judge the judge the way some other judges seem to do here. What are we doing here on this blog but saying what we think anyhow? Whether we are gagging over Rosie OD or a terrorist scumbag–or cringing over Oprah or the Anna Nicole death–we are all making judgments. That’s why we tune in to Debbie–we compare her (usually) sharp and astute judgements with our own.
Some have said that suicide is the ultimate act of selfishness. I think that is true–and yes I can relate to what Canadien says. Yet, I have seen the other side–and like (what a name) Cyanide Girl says–I have been humbled myself to be pretty careful about being too harsh–as I have compromised myself when in pain. I don’t want to fall into condemning what must have been act of despair full of gloom, loss of hope and a desire for release. We all must agree this is tragic.
Life is a precious gift. Taken apart from the context of the G-d who gives it–it is an unaswerable puzzle. Stop and consider that your life is a gift–fight to never lose sight of that. Close to you right now, someone is likely in despair and needs you to realize that they are crying out for help. Are you even looking? What are you going to do about it?

BB on March 18, 2007 at 2:00 pm

When entertainers who you recall in your younger days start dying – it just makes you feel so much older. “More Than A Feeling” – a great Boston song.
I looked out this morning and the sun was gone
Turned on some music to start my day
I lost myself in a familiar song
I closed my eyes and I slipped away
Its more than a feeling, when I hear that old song they used to play (more than a feeling)
I begin dreaming (more than a feeling)
till I see Marianne walk away
I see my Marianne walkin away
So many people have come and gone
Their faces fade as the years go by
Yet I still recall as I wander on
As clear as the sun in the summer sky

Ripper on March 19, 2007 at 7:36 am

Suicide and other odd things that depressed people do….. I’ve never had a depression issue but I’ve known people who have. It’s a chemical imbalance in your head, it’s an actual physical problem. It messes with the way you see things, and your reality becomes different from everyone else’s reality. It can make a normally responsible person do amazingly messed up things, after which they will be going “how did I even do that? What was I thinking?”. It can make a woman leave her children, it can make a man quit a great job, it can make a person think death is the only way to solve their problems. Yes it seems like the ultimate selfish act, but to the person doing it there seems to be no other choice. A lot of people who have gotten to a severe state are not selfish worthless people, and to judge them the way some of you are doing displays not only a huge lack of compassion but also a huge lack of knowledge. You think no sane person would do that. You’re right. If someone’s life has shown that they are a piece of shit, then fine. Trash talk all you want. But if that’s not the case then you really don’t know anything about it and to think that person just gave up on life and didn’t care about their loved ones is an ignorant opinion. Clinical depression doesn’t mean you’re weak any more than having a ruptured disk means you’re weak. It’s a physical thing that you can’t control. It’s just not as simple as you make it out to be.

Stealthkix on March 19, 2007 at 9:39 am

Unfortunately in my life I have known at least 6 people (3 of whom I was very close with) who have committed suicide – the most recent being last June. It is a horrible feeling when someone you know does something like that.

Ripper on March 19, 2007 at 10:21 am

I’m sorry that I couldn’t respond sooner to the vexatious PAGANs.
UNFORTUNATELY Cyanide Girl has spent her whole life ìinhalingî the Toronto Star where the only wrong is to offend someoneís feelings and there is no existing OBJECTIVE MORALITY.
THOSE OF US enlightened by Divine Revelation know the only truth.
THOU shall not kill. Certainly, not yourself.
Brad had two elaborate suicide plans, which took time and considerable effort to put in motion.
WHAT and no time for reflection on the impact his actions would have on those left behind?
A final letter or two is not going to ìcover that offî, Brad.
Those at risk of suicide need to be evangelized about the devastation they will leave behind if their contemplations and actions are successful, and that part of their ìillnessî is their tendency to minimize this fact. This point really needs to be brought home in a dispassionate way, presented in a ìmatter of factî manner and repeated often. THEY REALLY do need to stop thinking about themselves, and the cure has always been to think about others, and to ìbear ones own crossî, so to speak.
IT IS the responsibility of the DEPRESSIVE therefore to seek out competent medical support when one experiences ìskewed thinking or feeling statesî and to submit to the prescribed plan of action.
It is the responsibility of the DEPRESSIVEíS FAMILY and/or FRIENDS to respond QUICKLY to veiled ìcries for helpî such as, a statement like ìIím very depressedî, or observing someone ìfeeling bad about himselfî for an extended period of time.
These may be the only chances you get to intervene.
Never IGNORE such disclosures, or assume theyíll go away.
And EMOTIONAL TRAUMA mitigates responsibility, but doesnít eliminate it!
SUCCESSFUL SUICIDE is a choice and NEVER an acceptable one.
What has always been acceptable is PAIN MANAGEMENT, whether EMOTIONAL or PHYSICAL.

The Canadien on March 20, 2007 at 8:06 pm

Ah, Canadien… knew you couldn’t resist another chance to grandstand and defend everyone from the sweeping tide of Paganism.
UNFORTUNATELY, you haven’t known me all my life, so do not presume to know where my understanding comes from.
Your pedantic discourse on the RESPONSIBILITIES of the DEPRESSIVES and their family and friends is chock-full of helpful, practical advice that looks really good on paper, and is ever so civic-minded. Let’s rally an army of do-gooders right now… !
Yes! Evangelize the depressed about the devastation they will leave behind… once again proof of the fact that you have no personal experience or real knowledge of the demonic pull or paralyzing power of true depression. The distortion of thinking is so extreme that parents have taken children with them, husbands taken wives into death, convinced that this would spare their loved ones the inevitable horrors of life that are so unnaturally perceived by the depressed.
Depression can take someone down so gradually that they don’t experience “skewed thinking or feeling states” that jumps out at them like a headache or cramps would. It is possible to be overcome so subtly and completely that you can’t remember feeling any other way. Pray only that a moment of clarity intervenes, or a caring friend is there to notice.
Dispassionate and “matter-of fact” repeated lectures about the consequences of suicide to someone in the grip of depression grate on the soul with their very lack of passion and true caring.
It’s one of the times true compassion and love for a fellow human being has to shine through. Insincerity or contempt is picked up on a depressive’s radar many times magnified. Hereís where “hate the sin, not the sinner” is paramount in importance.
Depressed people already despise themselves enough for their real or imaginary sins.
“Cheer up, snap out of it, think of the kids”, repeated 100 times doesn’t cut it as a cure.
Remember, only half a century ago the firm belief that alcoholics only lacked the will-power to stop drinking was the “wisdom” written in the stone hearts of “experts”.
Friends, family, be on the lookout…
However, you are assuming the person in question has close family or friends, and that the influence of depression has not made the sufferer fall into the practice of putting a brave face on things while their world becomes darker behind the mask they’ve assumed.
Medical help? A properly trained AND compassionate doctor IS INDEED WORTH more than gold. For me, finding one has been the fruit of 30 years of searching. Depression has so many medical components can that feed the condition that the treatment is much more complicated than throwing the latest antidepressant at the symptoms.
My depression was kick-started many years ago by post-traumatic stress from being witness to two automobile accidents, and then the crash of Air Canada Flight 621 in 1970.
I believe you “inhaled” the Star coverage of that well-known disaster as well. We both know that 109 people died instantly on that morning only one mile south of our family’s home; and I pretty much lost the ability to sleep properly since that day. So sleep deprivation fed into my depression. However – because we live in this great nation of Canada with government-funded public healthcare, I was eventually able to blunder into the right solution for my condition.
As for what will “cover off” for Brad… leave it to God now.
My comments donít imply your advice was wrong, just simplistic.
I’ll grant you several important points:
SUCCESSFUL SUICIDE is a “choice” (quotations mine, for reasons mentioned above) and a reprehensible one, if successful.
We are accountable first to God, and then to society, for the use or misuse of the gift of life.
Respond QUICKLY to veiled “cries for help” such as, a statement like “I’m very depressed”, or observing someone “feeling bad about himself” for an extended period of time.
Yes, these may be the only chances you get to intervene.
Never IGNORE such disclosures, or assume they’ll go away.
What has always been acceptable is PAIN MANAGEMENT,
whether EMOTIONAL or PHYSICAL.
Right on these points.
One more point – I’ve found a sense of humor about life to be another priceless gift
from God. Most people forget about its power to heal just when it can do the most good.
Mockery and sarcasm directed towards anyone you feel superior to, Canadien, help no one feel better.
For a fine example of grace in the face of tragedy, check out Wikipedia
for the story of how musician Warren Zevon responded to his diagnosis of lung cancer…
RIP, Warren (1947-2003)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warren_Zevon

Cyanide Girl on March 21, 2007 at 5:46 am

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