1966 - 2010
1966 - 2010
A memorial service for Lee will be held at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery Chapel
on Sunday March 7, 2010 at 1pm.
We lost a good friend and a good man yesterday and we are all sad.
We will miss you, Lee.
The break room stories, your ENDLESS well of music knowledge and passion, your genuinely warm spirit and kindness that you brought every day.
We were lucky to have the time we had with you.
SO glad you and Joe came and celebrated this last FAT Tuesday with us. You left us with the echoes of Ernie K. Doe, Lee Dorsey, and the Meters...and your smile.
Lee Gordon---you were a man of many layers. From the ASTOUNDING performance as IGGY on the Amoebapalooza stage, to the warmth and kindness you showed all of us every day, to the customers who would wait two hours or more for you to start your shift---simply because "there's no one like Lee...." Most certainly there wasn't and there never will be.
Here's to you....Lee Gordon. "Time to flip the record over...."
With love and gratitude,
your Amoeba family
The tributes are rolling in, and, as usual, my friends and colleagues are more eloquent than I, so I'll be brief.
Lee was an amazing person, the kind of guy you want to know, and in a store of 250 people (and a world of 6 billion), the kind of guy that makes everyone feel comfortable. I've never met a better father, and I doubt I ever will. I never met a bigger music brain (ok, music nerd), and I know I never will.
He loved baseball, music trivia, his family and his friends, and we loved him back. And we miss him. My heart hurts for Stacy and Joe and the entire Gordon family. It's a sad day, indeed.
-- Jim Henderson
As I write this my heart weighs heavy. I was in Amoeba music earlier this evening when I heard of Lee Gordon's passing. It put me in a state of shock. Stumbling around the aisles, I could not believe it. I did not want to believe it. I was welling and choking up, ready to lose it. Buying records meant nothing, there was no joy to be had in the process. This was not some random person I met once - this was a person I spent the past 7 years conversing with. Lee was one of the best people I met here in Los Angeles. Kind, friendly, down to earth. He loved '60s rock n roll, and he shared his love for it everyday with those of us who were patient enough with his mile a minute banter to understand how deep and wide and tall it was. His knowledge of the arcane and obscure minutia pertaining to the inner workings of the Los Angeles music industry were staggering, nearly unmatched. Lee was a verbose man, he could go and go and go and go on and on and on and on about the things he loved even more intensely, and at greater lengths, than myself. Which is some feat. Yet, he also listened. If you had something to say that you felt important, he would listen closely. And if you had something to say that he was not as interested in, he would still listen. Because Lee was as gentleman. And a generous, helpful, honest individual who is already missed by more people than I can even count. Lee was just one of those rare people you meet in life who injected more goodness into the world than anything else. I already miss him. And always will.
-- Frankie Delmane
Lee was an amazing coworker and a very smart, informative, gracious, and interesting man. He will be missed by everyone who got the pleasure of being near him. So sad!
-- Tim Ranow
Today, it came to my attention that one of the finest people I've ever known has passed away. Lee D. Gordon, music connoisseur, Folk/Country master and all around great guy, died of complications due to Myocarditis which is the inflammation of the heart muscle. I guess his heart was too big for his small body.
There wasn't a day that passed that I didn't learn something from this Jack of all trades. Brother Lee was a music purest and someone who was respected and loved by all. I'm gonna miss hearing that raspy baritone voice of his sprinkling his vast knowledge on the people around him.
Best of luck to his little boy and his lovely wife. He was such a proud father and loving husband.
Today, we lost a very special soul. Rest in peace, Brother Lee. You will be greatly missed.
-- Travis King
Lee... Talking old 45s with you was like having my own perfect librarian at my disposal. Your enthusiasm and knowledge remain unmatched, and I've always thought of you whenever a Love song appears in the air, or whenever anyone wears an absurdly sleeveless shirt. Much love.
-- Sam Ott
Lee - you have so many stories to share with the other side, I guess we couldn't hog them all. You will be missed.
-- Jennifer Pearl
I don't want to believe it. Your passing is a reminder to me that we're all here on borrowed time. Wish you were here to share with us longer, but I know you're in a good place. Thanks for being, Lee...
-- Christy Greenwood
Lee: Jennifer Aniston in an MC5 t-shirt on an episode of "Friends" - one of many moments of shared hilarity between us on the used rock floor (speaking of cognitive dissonance). You were always loved and appreciated, gentle friend.
Lee...I'm gonna miss your dry sense of humor...the political insight you shared with me...the fact that you could spot a shitty disco record from a mile away. I loved listening to your rambling lectures on music that I needed to know more about. Teach on homie...you made all of us at Amoeba better at what we do.
-- Chris Matthews
Lee Flash Gordon - You've told me so many great stories throughout our years at Amoeba. Thank you for your genuine compassion. I'm gonna miss you.
-- Billy Calhoun
I first met Lee in about 2002 or so when I hired him at the Rhino Records store. We immediately hit it off due to our mutual over-the-top love of Rock'n'Roll and baseball. Lee was a walking encyclopedia of LA's rich rock'n'roll history. He knew where every classic LA recording studio had once stood and which great records were recorded there, as well as the exact location of the great '60s LA rock'n'roll clubs, and plenty more, as well. This information was far more important to both of us than anything we had ever learned in school. Then, there was our mutual love of baseball. He was pretty much a Giants fan, but he was always excited for me when my beloved New York Yankees were doing well. Between these two subjects we could chat for hours, and whenever I would drop by the store, Lee was one of my first stops, and we would instantly dive into these, the two cornerstone topics of our lives. I know this was on the company dime, so please forgive us for that, but as they say, passion is no ordinary thing, and Lee had plenty of that, too.
I have nothing but good things to say about him, something I am sure is true for all of you, as well. Just a great sweet guy, with a beautiful family, and a big heart. I already feel his absence, even though, as I write I am 6,000 miles away. He is the second friend I have lost this week, so what I want to impart is hard earned.
What I want to say to honor him is for all you who read this. Eleven years ago I learned the hard way about the fragility of our time here in this dirty old world, and that nothing but nothing is guaranteed. What that means is that you never know how many times that muscle inside of all of us is going to beat. And, in turn, it is most important to recognize what really matters while we're here. I mean, what REALLY matters. To me, that comes down to two things. One, is that wasting time is the greatest sin of all (do what you love, and follow your dreams), and two, the most precious thing we have is each other. I am older than most of you so this, as I say, was learned the hard way. If I had one wish for all of you, it would be for you all to gain this perspective the easy way, and not when it is too late. It's simple really, and it's been repeated endlessly, but it is the great failing of the human condition to be unable to fully appreciate some things until it is too late. Maybe this is all part of some grand design, and maybe it is futile and downright foolish on my part to try and fuck with a Grand Design, but that has never stopped me before. This is all a very long, convoluted way of saying we need to love each other. No, I mean REALLY love each other. We need to look after each other, take care of each other, and never take each other for granted. Because as I already said, each other is the most precious thing we have while we're here. And, gone ain't nothing but gone. In honor of Lee, I would wish that his life and his tragic way-too-early death could help us gain this perspective before someone else is gone. And believe me my friends, it will happen again to all of us. It is simply the way of things, and it sucks. Lee was a beautiful guy, as unique as any of us, and the void he leaves will never be filled. But, we can honor him by filling it a bit everyday. We are, after all, our brothers' and sisters' keepers.
I am on stage in less than an hour, and in many ways it is the last thing I want to do tonight. I am weighed down by grief and sadness. However, I have an obligation: to my audience, my band, and to myself. So, I will keep Lee front and center in my heart and soul as inspiration, and do the best job I can, knowing that I am doing the thing he loved best in this world, outside of his family, of course. But, I plan to channel all these feelings and raise the roof a bit, shout to the heavens, sing my heart out, and demand that whoever is Lee's keeper now better be doing a damn good job of it. Lee wouldn't stand for less for any of us, and I will do my best not to let him down.
Lee, old friend. bless you, and your family, and bless all of you, my Amoeba family. I am thinking of every one of you, and I am here for you all. Take care of each other, love each other. Right now.
-- Scott Kempner
Lee, you were one of the greatest men I've ever known. I always admired your kindness and vast knowledge of all things musical. You were an inspiration to a person like me who has always strived to learn more and to dig a bit deeper. My most sincere sympathies go out to your wife and son. Your legacy lives on and you are missed. I'm grateful to have known you. Seriously. I don't think that you had any idea how large an impact you had on me or many of the other people who surrounded you daily. You were the first person who fully supported my girl group addiction. Who else is gonna supply me when the fresh goodies come in to the store? You always hit the nail on the head. Today was bizarre and completely surreal. Tonight every record that hits the table goes out to you, Lee. Your legacy lives on through those of us who knew and love you. Though we only knew one another for these past two years, you're in my heart and the impact is deep.