Today's dead addict comes to us from Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. His name was Howie Epstein, and he played bass for the band. Tom Petty had this to say about him:
"You gotta love him, I don’t know if I ever tell him how good he is. Tonight, there was a line early in the show I could just barely sing. I was having to work harder than I normally do to make it, I was getting really close on the mike. I was thinking, 'Oh boy, I hope I can do this...' I got to it and I heard Howie singing it with me over his mike. It sounded great, it sounded like a double track. I just looked at him, he caught my eye like 'Yeah!' It made me feel great, 'cause I know he was thinking the same thing, 'I know he’s tired, I’ll cover him—wham! Got it!' That’s what a great band’s all about. That’s what it’s all about."
He died at the age of 47 of complications from his heroin use.
I'm noticing a pattern among these dead junkies--they're mostly terribly talented, but either they die too young or they end up being a better (cleaner) artist's sidekick or helper.
It makes me sad to think of my husband and all his tremendous talent. I hope he doesn't end up a footnote to someone else's life.