Today we lost Erik Peterson, the frontman and mastermind behind anarcho-punk act Mischief Brew. I had met Erik on a handful of occasions. I covered a couple of his Toronto shows when he was in town, and caught him headlining an outdoor concert in Tompkins Square Park the last time I was in New York. We weren’t friends, but each time we spoke, Erik was kind enough to pretend he remembered me. He even sent short thank you email l after I wrote an article called Mischief Brew and the case for Punk Rock. Small gestures like that are rare from anybody, particularly from touring bands, but Erik was the type of guy who would make the effort. He valued his community and gave the impression that punk rock was a space where anybody could have a home. It was one of the reasons I was drawn to his music. Erik was the type of guy who practiced what he preached, and from talking to him, and talking to his friends,it was so clear that he meant all of those words he sang. That’s not something that I’m going to forget.
Since hearing the news an hour ago I’ve been thinking a lot about what to say. Erik was the type of artist that made you feel like you knew him, even if you didn't really know him, and the idea that we are never going to have another awkward outside the venue interaction again makes me deeply sad. I'll miss drinking too many beers and yelling his words back at him and I'll miss what he represented for a lot of us. He was a guy who worked a day job and who was making music and touring becasue he loved to, and today I'm going to try my best to remember why I keep doing this. Here's to you, Erik. Rest in Peace.