On Sunday, Jan. 20, friends, family and bandmates gathered to remember Bloomington musician Evan Farrell’s wonderful personality and remarkable gift for music. Doors to the Bluebird opened at 5 p.m. for a benefit concert following a memorial service for Farrell held that afternoon at the Buskirk-Chumley Theatre in downtown Bloomington.
The evening started with food, drinks and togetherness as people reminisced about a life that touched many. A silent auction was held throughout the night, with concert tickets, books and other Farrell memorabilia up for bid. All proceeds from the auction and other donations collected that day will go to Farrell’s family.
The night was a video and musical tribute to the musician’s life. The videos projected were short comedies starring Farrell in which he portrayed unique characters, such as the infamous “GoGo YaYa.”
Lois Trendelman, a friend and former coworker, said Farrell was passionate, unique, and very genuine. “He made me laugh,” she said. Her husband, Jordan Trendelman, added, “It always seemed like he was having a good time.”
His good nature is obvious to anyone who watched his films or ever knew him. Smiles, laughter and applause filled the nightclub during the numerous stories that were told about Farrell by his friends and loved ones. Alexis Butera said that his energy and wit was “contagious and magnetic.”
Ellie Schreiner, a close friend of Farrell and his family, said, “Evan was a great guy. Everyone will really miss him, and it is just great how he has brought the community together. He was the funniest guy I have ever met in my life, and I think a lot of people feel that way."
Following the film portion of the night, several bands performed. Farrell was a member of some of the groups that took the stage, and he made a significant impact on those bands in which he was never a permanent member, either as an enthusiast or sometime substitute musician.
“Evan wants us to listen to music and express ourselves musically … Evan will live on … and the world will know how great music is because of Evan,” said Jim Manion, music director of Bloomington community radio station WFHB.
Farrell encouraged people to make things happen through music, a legacy that was clear from seeing from the large turnout of family, friends, fans and admirers that came to The Bluebird to honor his life, memory, and talents.