My Ode to Her’s

That band of Her’s; my happiest hello and saddest goodbye. After discovering my favorite band freshman year, I never would have expected how much their music and personalities would leave an impact on my life.


by Lauren Brackney, Social Media Team

I found my first love when I was 14 and its name was “Marcel,” a song written by the band Her’s. Since then I have fallen into a healthy obsession with the band, composed of Stephen Fitzpatrick and Auden Laading. Their music had reached me like no other band had before, with their sweet lyrics about love and friendship to their more lonesome and sad lyrics that touched my heart.

My first encounter with Her’s was fall 2018. I was watching a YouTube video by Marla Catherine when she played a little snippet of a song from her phone. The song only played for a few seconds, but something about it just made me feel all tingly and excited. The way the lyrics flowed so smoothly into one another gave me goosebumps. I couldn’t make out what they were saying in the snip, but I could still feel how much emotion they put into the song. I kept replaying the scene over and over until I could make out a few words so I could look up the lyrics and find the name of the song — “Marcel” by Her’s. 

This was my first time meeting Her’s and the first time that I saw the golden, red sun rays shining on the purple water of the cover. I was hooked. I had to hear more from them! I sought out more of their music, listening to their albums, “Invitation to Her’s” and “Songs of Her’s.” I tried to space out their music so that I wouldn’t spoil it all by listening to them so quickly.

Over the next year, “Marcel” was consistently my favorite song by the duo. It had the fewest lyrics out of any song but something about it has always stuck with me. The title of the song also has the cutest backstory. Fitzpatrick and Laading were shopping at a vintage shop when they found an old wallet with an ID inside it, belonging to no other than a man named Marcel! They wanted to return the ID to him but he had already passed so instead they dedicated a song to him.

The first time I read that, I bawled. I thought that that was the sweetest thing that I had ever heard, and it made me like the artists behind my favorite song so much more. I could tell that they were genuinely nice people who love vintage shopping, who would go out of their way to return an old 80’s ID card to a mustached Marcel. Every time I played “Marcel” from that moment out, I would tell whoever I was with the back story since it was too good not to share and every time it would make me tear up.

I had never had an emotional connection to a band before but somehow this amazing duo from Liverpool had made their way into my heart. With only two full released albums, I was able to sort through them and find exactly the right songs to play to match my mood. Whenever I was happy I would play “Harvey” or “Love on the Line.” When I was sad I would play “You don’t know this guy” or “Cool with you.”  Anytime that I shuffled my playlists and one of their songs would come on, it had the power to instantly change my mood. 

By my 16th birthday I knew that I had to meet them. I was begging my mom to take me to England so we could go to one of their concerts. I couldn’t find any active concerts on their website, but I still wanted to go just on the off chance I would run into them in a vintage shop. My mom humored me by saying that we could go when I was older, as a graduation gift. That little bit of hope was enough for me. Unfortunately it didn’t last very long.

January 2020 I was trying to find information about concerts when I found the opposite. An article titled “UK band Her’s killed in head-on crash in Arizona,” destroyed me. I read the name of the article over and over trying to make sense of it. It was impossible, they couldn’t be dead. I read the article still not believing it, they had to be talking about someone else! But no, there were more more articles, and all of them contained the same terrible fate.

I had never met the members of the band and yet believe I went through all seven stages of grief. I was shocked to say the least. I was supposed to see them live, become best friends with them; I felt so guilty for not knowing. They had passed back in March but I wouldn’t find out until January of the next year. I felt fake, like I didn’t even know them and that I was wrong for saying that they were my favorite band yet I didn’t know the most significant thing about them. 

I remember while I was driving, shortly after getting my license, one of their songs, “You don’t know this guy” started to play; my eyes started to water so heavily causing my vision to fade, and I had to pull over. All of their sad songs that had made me tear up in the past hadn’t made me feel the way that I felt that moment. It was like listening to them for the first time, they were completely new songs to me. I wanted to take all of their pain away that they expressed in their songs. They deserved only to be happy and only the best the world had to offer. 

I didn’t feel like myself for a long time, but I eventually started to accept what had happened. I felt like I owed them something since they had given me so much joy. I bought their albums on vinyl, it felt good knowing that I could financially show support to their families in what little way I could. It also felt good being able to have something physical to remember them by; proof of their talent that I could share for years to come.

From my experience with that band of Her’s, I could tell that they were dreamers who had so much love for the world that it poured into all of their songs. I can never express to them how much they mean to me and how they unknowingly have helped me through some of my most depressing, difficult moments. I cannot dedicate a song to them in the same way they dedicated the song to Marcel, so for now, this is my ode to Her’s.