Polara and the work of Ed Ackerson

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Kinda bummed that there was no Polara thread as such on here. A great band with a solid clutch of fine albums, and I'm positive I saw them at a show in SoCal at least once but the details are fuzzy. Per a Facebook post from his wife, its leader, Ed Ackerson, passed yesterday due to cancer:


There's a GoFundMe for the family here:


Very sadly, I was unaware of just how much Ackerson had done musically in Minnesota in general, not just his bands but his work at Flowers Studio over many years. Numerous posts already talking about his many good qualities -- he sure does seem like he was one of the great ones.

My condolences to the Ackerson Family. I’ve been friends with Ed since the very early 90s, he was genuinely one of the most down to earth positive people I have ever known. I have mad respect for the way he consistently lived his life, and for Ashley’s strength through this pic.twitter.com/rutm3Bu3Cl

— anton newcombe (@antonnewcombe) October 5, 2019

I just found out that @edackerson has passed away after a hard-fought battle with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. Even though I am a writer by trade, words always seem to fail me at times like these. But I have to say… https://t.co/Yyi0gfduHl

— Lÿndsey Parker (@lyndseyparker) October 5, 2019

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 5 October 2019 13:24 (nine months ago) link

Really hard new, Ed was a great guy. And ever present, going back to his "nerd hardcore" band, Mr. Slate, and the Dig. Playing, doing sound, producing, in the crowd. Always a smile.

His illness went public went he got a callout from Pete Townshend when he played here a couple weeks back. Pete is a big fan of the classical music show Performance Today, and those folks were able to arrange for Ed to meet him.

There's a series of interview clips from the Whole music club at the U of M up on youtube, here he talks about his musical formation:


And the 27 Various playing the Middle East:


by the light of the burning Citroën, Saturday, 5 October 2019 15:49 (nine months ago) link

had met and chatted with Ed a few times, was a real staple of the MN music scene, continued to do interesting work with BNLX and other projects, from what I understand he smartly rolled his 90s alt rock boom advance money into a studio in Uptown when real estate there was still affordable, which was really world class and recorded I'm sure thousands of records over the years ... never heard a bad word said about him, seemed incredibly supportive and generally just a good presence in Minneapolis

those Polara records still sound great

Blues Guitar Solo Heatmap (Free Download) (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Saturday, 5 October 2019 16:04 (nine months ago) link

There are great moments on every Polara album I've heard, but I really love that first album. One of the best albums of the decade for me

I missed this even though I'm friends with Ed on FB but this is really terrible news ;_;. My heart goes out to their family.

the cretin hits the cast (Drugs A. Money), Saturday, 5 October 2019 17:01 (nine months ago) link

I'm positive I saw them at a show in SoCal at least once but the details are fuzzy.

The one time I saw Polara was when they opened up for Spiritualized on the Pure Phase tour in 1995. They were great - wish I talked with Ed more at the merch table.

Elvis Telecom, Saturday, 5 October 2019 17:15 (nine months ago) link

THAT must have been it -- this was at the Whiskey? I remember attending a promo dinner beforehand...

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 5 October 2019 17:22 (nine months ago) link

John D. Strohm (Blake Babies etc, now running Rounder Records) knew Ed for decades -- hell of a remembrance:


Ned Raggett, Saturday, 5 October 2019 17:22 (nine months ago) link

More memories as well from a longtime friend/collaborator, Nick Tangborn.


Ned Raggett, Saturday, 5 October 2019 20:57 (nine months ago) link

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