RIP Luke Hunsicker | Rock Candy

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

RIP Luke Hunsicker

Posted By on Tue, Aug 24, 2010 at 5:02 PM

UPDATE II: There's a Tumblr page devoted to Luke now with a great picture of him and the official obit.

UPDATE: The memorial service is 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 28 at Christ Episcopal Church at 509 Scott. A reception will follow at Revolution until 3 p.m. There's a Facebook event page.

The family requests that those wishing to make memorial donations direct them to CARTI, Hospice Home Care or the Genesis Program of MERI.

The Little Rock music community lost one of its most beloved figures earlier this week. Luke Hunsicker died early Monday morning after a long battle with brain cancer. He was 29.

Music fans across the country knew him as the rangy, charismatic bassist in American Princes. He joined the band as it was blossoming from a local favorite to a national touring act signed to North Carolina’s Yep Roc Records.

Followers of the local music scene remember him as one of the area’s most in-demand bassists, who, at one time or another, played as a member of 613 Mob, Big Boots, The Evelyns, Silver Swirly, Sugar and the Raw, Them of Delphi and Under Rues.

And friends and family remember him as a “renaissance man,” someone who “could do a little bit of everything really well,” according to his wife Sydney, a Fort Smith native who he met at an American Princes concert in Chicago and married three years ago.

He drew. He worked with pastels. He sewed. He sculpted, earning the awe of high school friends as a senior when Parkview decided to purchase “Bucket Boy,” a self-portrait sculpture, from the torso up, coming out of a five gallon bucket. And he cut hair in a barber chair in his house. Usually in exchange for a six-pack.

In fact, cutting hair very nearly became a profession. He initially turned down the Princes offer to join because he wanted to go to cosmetology school and was planning to go again recently.

But according to his friend Jack Lloyd, music was the art he was most passionate about for the last eight years.

The Princes’ Collins Kilgore and David Slade each remember the first time they saw Hunsicker play bass. They were at opposite ends of White Water Tavern, watching him play with The Evelyns, and they met in the middle to say what the other was thinking: this guy needs to be in our band.

“I’d never heard lines like that,” Slade remembered earlier this week. “The melodies were brilliant. And he made them seem so effortless. I’ve played with him live for years. Thinking about it now, that’s one of my favorite memories. It hit me, like seeing anyone else never has.”

Beyond his musical contribution to the band, his band mates remember his as a steady, calming presence.

“We all had to spend a whole lot of time together on the road, and there are a lot of tough times, where people are prone to wig out,” Kilgore said. “But Luke was always there to tell people to chill out, to know when circumstances weren’t all that serious.”

Slade remembered him being constantly engaged with his friends and family.

“He was constantly keeping in touch with people, not just in Little Rock, but around the country. He took so much joy in people’s good fortune.”

“He got to know people so well,” echoed Mike Motley, who first befriended Luke at Parkview High School and later played with him in Sugar and the Raw. “If he gave you advice on something, you could pretty much take it to the bank. We used to joke when we had problems that the answer should always be, ‘What would Luke do?’”

Even when he got sick, Motley said Hunsicker continued to provide guidance to his friends.

“He helped everyone else deal with it. He guided his friends and family through his terminal illness. He refused to let it get to him. You could joke with him about anything all the way up to the end.

The last time I saw him, I knew he wasn’t doing good, and I probably wasn’t going to see him again. We had a good talk. I kept telling him, ‘I love you, man,’ so we started talking about that movie, ‘I Love You, Man.’”

“He taught me a completely different definition of what it meant to love someone,” his wife Sydney said on Tuesday. “Even more so over the last two years, during the time we got to spend together because of the way friends and family took care of us and let me take care of him. Nobody’s ever seen a support system like we’ve had, and it’s still going.”

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments (12)

Showing 1-12 of 12

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-12 of 12

Add a comment

More by Lindsey Millar

  • The Guns and Taxes Edition

    Governor Hutchinson’s tax cut promises, guns, Medicaid and pharmacists and the Babe Bracket — all covered on this week's podcast.
    • Feb 16, 2018
  • Locked away and forgotten

    In 2017, teenagers committed to rehabilitative treatment at two South Arkansas juvenile lockups did not receive basic hygiene and clothing supplies and lived in wretched conditions.
    • Feb 14, 2018
  • The Dancin' with Bart Hester Edition

    A new lawsuit challenging the state’s photo ID law, Bart Hester vs. the humanities, signs of a threat to governors school, big bills for the state Supreme Court and Clarke Tucker making a run for Congress — all covered on this week's podcast.
    • Feb 9, 2018
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Arkansas Times Recommends: A Literary Edition

    Arkansas Times Recommends is a series in which Times staff members (or whoever happens to be around at the time) highlight things we've been enjoying this week.
    • Jul 1, 2016
  • Checking in with Hard Pass

    Shayne Gray talks with Mitch Vanhoose and Chad Conder of Hard Pass (formerly Cosby) ahead of the band's album release on July 22.
    • Jul 21, 2016
  • The trailer for Jeff Nichols' 'Loving' looks great

    The latest from Little Rock's Jeff Nichols hits theaters Nov. 4. It's Nichols' telling of the story of Richard and Mildred Loving, whose marriage led to the landmark civil rights case Loving v. Virginia, which ended laws preventing interracial marriage. Ruth Negga's performance as Mildred Loving generated Oscar talk after the film debuted at Cannes.
    • Jul 14, 2016

Most Shared

  • A mayor stands up against freeway widening. No. Not in Little Rock.

    Another booming city, Indianapolis, fights ever wider urban freeways. Meanwhile, back in Little Rock .....
  • In the margins

    A rediscovered violin concerto brings an oft-forgotten composer into the limelight.
  • Donald Trump is historically unpopular — and not necessarily where you think

    My colleagues John Ray and Jesse Bacon and I estimate, in the first analysis of its kind for the 2018 election season, that the president's waning popularity isn't limited to coastal cities and states. The erosion of his electoral coalition has spread to The Natural State, extending far beyond the college towns and urban centers that voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016. From El Dorado to Sherwood, Fayetteville to Hot Springs, the president's approval rating is waning.
  • Arkansans join House vote to gut Americans with Disabilities Act

    Despite fierce protests from disabled people, the U.S. House voted today, mostly on party lines, to make it harder to sue businesses for violating the Americans with Disabilities Act. Of course Arkansas congressmen were on the wrong side.

Most Recent Comments

 

© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation