MARY'S MESSAGE TO THE FANS
I have said it so many times over the long, painful corse of this project, "The songs that would have been My Sweetheart The Drunk (as well as all the other recorded material he left behind) are the true 'remains' of Jeff Buckley, not the speck of dust that was pulled out of Wolf River." It's these precious recordings; all unfinished, some raw, some of them too flawed to be released, some of them only puzzle pieces intended for a larger mosaic. In some cases he left behind "instructions", in some cases we could only guess what Jeff might have intended.
In his last phone conversation, Jeff was ecstatic about the upcoming sessions, he was full of confidance about the progress he'd made with his music... said he had it all down "in black and white"...that the band just had to "supply the colors". Later that day, while waiting for his band to meet him in Memphis, he and a friend went for a drive, ending up at the marina. He went for a swim on that sunlit southern spring evening...and slipped away from us forever.
What we've done with those "black and white sketches" of the songs written for My Sweetheart The Drunk is to leave them as "works in progress". Throughout the entire process of compiling this album, my goal was to see that these works would go out as close to the way Jeff left them as possible. None of these songs were ever truly completed. Even the sonically superior multi-track studio recordings were of songs still in the very beginning stages of creation, were never allowed to "percolate" long enough to satisfy Jeff's (and his bands) usual creative process. On the other hand, the most recent home recordings of the songs might have replaced those earlier sessions were such primitive recordings that they would challenge even the most avid Jeff Buckley aficionado.
I would give anything to have him here...to help him celebrate the release of the real My Sweetheart The Drunk, the album only he could make. If Jeff had lived and chosen to earse these sketches, it would have been a relatively minor loss. He could have written hundreds of songs and made dozens of albums in their place. Unfortunately, God had something else in mind for my son, and for me.
One thing for sure, my son was not an elitist. He would never have wanted his music to be known only among a small "inner circle" of friends. His favourite moments in life were when he was delivering his music to his fans, those people who were now weeping and mourning his passing all over the world...playing "Grace" full blast over and over because that's all they had of him to listen to. This album, and the ones to follow, is my gift to those fans, present and future. I believe with all my heart that my son will live among us as long as his songs are being played and sung. If I have anything to do with it, That will be for a long long time to come.
Mary Gilbert (Jeff's mum)