NPR logo

Visqueen: From Cancer, A Rock 'N' Roll Triumph

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/121402293/121402354" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Visqueen: From Cancer, A Rock 'N' Roll Triumph

Music Interviews

Visqueen: From Cancer, A Rock 'N' Roll Triumph

Visqueen: From Cancer, A Rock 'N' Roll Triumph

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/121402293/121402354" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

The band Visqueen has been out of the public eye for a while. Rachel Flotard, the group's lead singer and songwriter, had more important things to deal with than putting out an album: Her father was fighting prostate cancer. She became his caregiver, and her Seattle home became his hospice.

Hear The Music

Hand Me Down

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/121402293/120167804" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Beautiful Amnesia

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/121402293/121414570" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

So Long

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/121402293/121414521" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Rachel Flotard dedicated Message to Garcia to the memory of her late father, George (right). Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption
Courtesy of the artist

Rachel Flotard dedicated Message to Garcia to the memory of her late father, George (right).

Courtesy of the artist

"We lived together for seven years," Flotard says. "He was my roommate. And the last couple years, we were little gladiators together. And I lost him."

The songs she wrote during her father's sickness became the unexpectedly upbeat rock album Message to Garcia.

"He died April 7," Flotard says, "and so I tried to kind of [throw] myself into something pretty quickly. That summer is when I added a lot of the organ that you hear, and the cello. I was using the record and this recording as something to kind of keep me alive, and keep me normal during a completely abnormal time."

For more of Flotard's interview with host Ari Shapiro, click the "Listen" link above.

Article continues after sponsorship

Purchase Featured Music

Buy Featured Music

Album
Message to Garcia
Artist
Visqueen
Label
Local 638
Released
2009

Your purchase helps support NPR programming. How?