From 2003 to 2008 I managed a band called The Gaskets. They were my entire life during that time period and the two members, Teddy Blanks and Ross Harman, became my closest friends. The Gaskets were one of the best live acts I had ever seen and are one of my favorite bands of all time. The two members had been friends since they were kids and had an amazing chemistry and made amazing music together. They were very different people but worked very well together. I know the Gaskets would have been a hugely successful band if not for Ross’ troubles with depression and alcohol.
On Monday morning was found dead on his roof after taking a bottle of pills in order to end his own life.
Many times in my life I have said that I hated Ross and I probably did. He caused me more pain that pretty much anyone I have ever met. But one thing I have found in life is that the only people who can hurt you like that are the people you love the most. The last two fist fights I have had were both with Ross andI have screamed and yelled at that kid more times than I can count, but I fucking loved that kid and I am just so glad that he and I were back on good terms after several months of not speaking to each other.
I have tried several times to write this post but I haven’t been able to do it. Every time I try I just start to cry. Even now tears are rolling down my cheeks. It’s so much easier to think of all the bullshit he and I went through than to think of the good times because whenever I think about the Ross I loved it makes my chest seize up. I have had a lot of friends die in my life but no one anywhere near as close to me as Ross and I don’t know how to deal with it. Even before Ross died I couldn’t listen to some of his old music without getting tears in my eyes thinking about the kid I knew before the drinking really took hold of his life.
Ross was a brilliant musician but he was also just an amazing guy. He was so fucking charming and when he was on point everyone loved him. I think that is why it was so hard for everyone to deal with the other Ross. He was so fucking smart and knew as much about music and film as anyone I have ever met. He was funny and so much fucking fun. Probably too fun. When Ross was happy everything was a party and no one ever wanted to stop partying with him. And when people started to worry about him he could always find a whole new group of people who were ready to party with him.
I haven’t really been a big part of his life the last two years but I thought he seemed a lot better. When I would talk to him he actually seemed happy and had been working the same job for years. He had a lot of people around him that loved him. But I knew he would never really be happy. He had too many demons in him and I know there is nothing anyone could have done to help him. I know, because Teddy and I tried fucking everything.
Right befoe Ross died he sent Teddy a text message telling him he loved him and I know Ross loved me too and I really hope he knows I loved him. Of all my friends Ross is one person I know would have always had my back and even if I couldn’t count on him for a lof of things I know he would be there for me if I really needed him. I just wish I could have been there more for him in the last few years.
I have so much more to say about Ross but I gotta stop crying. I haven’t cried like this in probably five years, the last time I though Ross killed himself. He managed to pull through that time but I guess it was just a matter of time before he finally followed through.
I am going to end this now with one of the last photos I took of Ross, a music video Ross directed and my favorite one of Ross’ solo songs. The video is for a Gaskets song called Left Hand. Teddy wrote it about Ross, their friendship and Ross’ drinking problem. Ross was really upset at first when Teddy wrote the song but grew to love it. Ross was an amazing painter and created this video completely himself by hand. My little brother put the video together, but everything else was all Ross. The song I am posting is called Nine Times Out Of Ten. It is not only my favorite song by him but so appropriate. It’s about his drinking problems and even though it is written to a girl, I think it is a little bit of an apology to his friends for what he put us all through. At the end he asks us to celebrate with him. And I guess from here on out I will try to celebrate with Ross and celebrate the life of a kid that meant fucking everything to me. I will be posting more of his music soon so you can enjoy just a little bit of what I did in the 7 years I knew my friend Ross Harman.
I will miss you forever you fucking selfish asshole. I love you with everything I have.
Ross Harman – Nine Times Out Of Ten: Ross Harman – Nine Times Out Of Ten