Thinking of golden days with you by my side, and I cry, Misha Lindes of the brokenhearted LA band SadGirl sings in their new song, “Goodbye Queenie.” The line, he says, references some “extremely personal and emotional memories for me and it resonates every time I listen to the recording.”
Penned as a farewell letter to the love of your life, the lyrics highlight what endures when the flame of infatuation burns out. The song’s subject is now distant enough that the message feels rhetorical. But, backed by melancholic melody, Lindes makes peace with the past while clinging to memories that’ll outlast time.
“This is an extremely personal song to me, a very candid goodbye to a very, very Important person and part of my life,” Lindes tells American Songwriter. “It came about mostly as a personal cathartic exercise, but I feel it needs to be shared now.”
Remniscent of what Dolly Parton once described as “sad ass country songs,” SadGirl purveys the tradition of mid-century heartbreak of Patsy Cline’s “Walkin’ After Midnight” and George Jones’s “Seasons Of My Heart.”
Lindes, a Los Angeles native, grew up in a musical household. He shares, “My father is a musician and from an early age music was an integral part of my life. Songwriting came naturally after obsessively learning music from other popular artists.”
SadGirl’s lo-fi sound is quintessentially Californian. The band’s retro-stylings are reflective of Lindes’ upbringing. Between his parents’ emphasis on early rock ‘n’ roll and the love affair West LA—his teenage turf—has with all things vintage, the artist found a musical home in the past. He wields pop-rock’s lost art of whining pedal steel to address modern problems in an age-old fashion.
An acoustic guitar-driven chord progression elevates returning drummer David Ruiz’s hypnotic percussion. Bouyant vocals and steady bass line of newcomer Sami Perez, and the yearning central melody and forlorn lyrics provided by Lindes all culminate in a devastating ballad.
“The song is the first venture in a new chapter for the group, focusing more as a personal recording project than it has been in the past,” Lindes says. “It’s without a doubt the saddest song I’ve ever written… but it’s also extremely exciting to venture into a new chapter.”
Listen to “Goodbye Queenie” below. Check out SadGirl’s 2019 debut album Water released on Suicide Squeeze Records, here.