Jeff Hanson, a 31-year-old singer-songwriter signed to the Kill Rock Stars label, was found dead in his apartment in St. Paul, MN yesterday. The Star-Tribune is reporting that he "likely died from a fall or other accident."
Hanson started rocking very young, as the frontman for Milwaukee-area teen-emo kids M.I.J., one of many bands inspired by the success of The Promise Ring. But Hanson really found his voice on his own, clearly inspired by Elliott Smith--another rocker who decided to follow a quieter muse. Hanson sent a tape of demos to Kill Rock Stars, which ended up releasing three albums, including last year's Madam Owl.
I knew Jeff a little bit, starting with his M.I.J. days--the band always wanted to open shows in Milwaukee, where I promoted shows occasionally. He was always a genial guy who had no problem talking about his "ladylike" voice. (He didn't speak that way, no.) Here's a link to an interview Hanson did with Decider last year. He will be missed.
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