“Songs for Slim” helps The Replacement’s guitarist pay for medical bills

Bob “Slim” Dunlap was born in my home state of Minnesota in 1951, joining The Replacements in the late 1980s.  Slim, as lead guitarist, was an important part of developing the sound that came to be known as early alternative rock. Though the band never gained wide commercial success, many musical peers recognize The Replacements as pioneers of rock.  Slim stayed with The Replacements until their 1991 breakup, helping to solidify the band’s spot in music history.

In February 2012 Slim was hospitalized due to a serious stroke, leaving him unable to eat or drink.  After Slim’s nine-month trek through hospitals and rehab centres, he was able to return to his home to continue healing.  However, due to the complications resulting from brain hemorrhages and swelling, medical costs remain high, as Slim will require care for the rest of his life.

The following September, Slim’s former band mates, Paul Westerberg and Tommy Stinson, started recording a Replacements’ reunion album.  The forthcoming EP would be released with 250 numbered copies on 10” vinyl and auctioned online with all proceeds going towards Slim Dunlap’s hospital bills.  The EP’s A-side features two of Slim’s own hits, “Busted Up”, recorded by Westerberg and Stinson, and “Radio Hook Word Hit”, recorded by former Replacements drummer Chris Mars.  The B-side has three songs, one from Gordon Lightfoot, Leon Payne, and the song “Everything’s Coming up Roses” from the musical Gypsy.  Bidders will also receive all other kinds of Replacements swag, including an EP cover autographed by Westerberg, Stinson, and Mars, four never-seen band pictures, and a print of the Mars painting found on the inner sleeve of the EP.

However, the project does not stop there.  Split 7”s will also be auctioned off periodically over the next year, starting February 15, 2013.  Each 7” contains two covers of Slim’s music performed by some of his greatest friends and fans, including Lucinda Williams, Craig Finn, Deer Tick, Steve Earl, The Jayhawks, NRBQ, and more to be announced.  All songs will be available digitally after the official auctions.

So far the project has raised close to $100,000, with only the EP titled Songs for Slim having been released.  The forthcoming 7”s are sure to add a great deal to this sum.

For more information, visit the project’s website.

-Sian Last


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