Songs by Absent Friends & Heroes

Videos by American Songwriter

In loving memory of Mark Humphreys,
Zak Nilsson, Don Heffington, Sandy Ross, Jerry Burgan, Terry Vreeland, Mac Davis,
D. Whitney Quinn, Michael Smith,
Duane Thorin, Maureena Danicar, P.F. Sloan
& John Prine

The list of great and beloved songwriters we’ve lost recently, and in the past year, is a long one. All of them dreamed of writing songs that would outlive them, and all succeeded. Some are known and loved in the world beyond our songwriting community; some are not but beloved to those of us who knew them, did gigs with them, and more. All of them touched us with their spirit and their songs; All of them are missed all the time. The world without them isn’t the same.

Yet their spirits survive as the songwriter intended, in the songs they wrote and recorded and left behind.

These songs are shared today In tuneful memory of our friends and fellow songwriters, with love and gratitude.

Mark Humphreys, “Jesus Christ, Joe Walsh and I”
from The River Road

Zak Nilsson, “Bigger Man,”
Written by Zak Nilsson for his dad Harry, performed live at at
The 4th Annual Harry Nilsson Tribute Singalong Concert
at Molly Malones, Los Angeles, June 20, 2019
produced by Todd Lawrence
Zak Nilsson – lead vocal
Jason Berk – piano
Video by Christinna Guzman
Edited by Nick Guzman
Additional video footage from the documentary, Who Is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin’ About Him)?

Don Heffington, “Fired Again.”
Live at McCabes, Santa Monica, California April 24, 2016
Written by Don Heffington & Sebastian Steinberg.
Benmont Tench, Piano.
Tim Young, Electric Guitar.
Sebastian Steinberg, Bass.
Greg Leisz, Pedal Steel.
Multi-Track Mixed by Sheldon Gomberg.
Video Cameras & Editing by Wayne Griffith & Sam Epstein.
Live and Multi-Track audio by Wayne Griffith


Sandy Ross, “All Of My Heroes Sang The Blues”
with Jeff Gold on guitar
Written by Sandy Ross
The Coffee Gallery Backstage,
Altadena, California

Jerry Burgan of We Five, “You Were On My Mind”
With Debbie Burgan

by Sylvia Fricker

Terry Vreeland, “Reasons Why”
with Tim Tedrow, his musical partner, on mandolin & vocals
and Joey Vreeland, his daughter, vocals
at Robert Morgan Fisher’s Folktacular, 2008
Santa Monica, California


Mac Davis, “In The Ghetto”
By Mac Davis
From Song Painter, 1972

D. Whitney Quinn, “When I Get To Heaven”
by D. Whitney Quinn
with Dave Morrison
Kulak’s Woodshed, Los Angeles


Michael Smith, “Spoon River”
by Michael Smith
August 1997
Live at the Brotherly Love Benefit Concert
The Prairie Center For The Arts, Schaumburg Illinois
For Eric Kinkel’s sister Linda Kinkel who suffered from MS.


P.F. Sloan, “Secret Agent Man”
Written by P. F. Sloan
Live at St James’s Church, Piccadilly, London,
June 23, 2014

Duane Thorin, “The Great Mandella”
Written by Peter Yarrow
with Tonya Smyth
& Michael Arcoangelo (Duane’s fellow Soul Rustler)
Performed in memory of Mary Travers
at the Coffee Gallery, Altadena, California
September 23, 2009


Maureena Danicar, “Runaway”
by Maureena Danicar
From the album Like The Sun
Released 2020


John Prine, “Souvenirs”
by John Prine
With Steve Goodman

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