Sean deLear was born Anthony Robertson, a Valley Boy from Simi Valley (who eventually became a well-known Valley Girl). Sean was always jet-setting from Europe to LA, and it was in Vienna that he succumbed to liver cancer last Tuesday.
Best known for singing in Glue, an underground punk band, Sean was always progressive and fashionable. He could turn up anywhere from the now-iconic cover of fanzine Ben is Dead where is is clad in pearls to a comic turn as “Sheena” in the music video for “Funky Cold Medina.”
As much as glamour was a part of Sean, so was his glowing personality. He made friends easily and was always there with a smile. We have collected a few memories from friends, although many people were still too broken up to contribute.
There will be a gathering to remember Sean on Sunday, September 10th from 4 PM – 7 PM at Taix in Silverlake.
The Velvet Margarita will hold a gathering on the Skatemaster Tate Patio behind the Cantina at 8pm on September 28th. There will be food and music and a place for Sean’s friends to gather. The memorial will be hosted by Carlos Adley, Ava Berman, Mike Hoffman and others who knew and loved Sean. All are welcome.
Kristian Hoffman: Only one of the most vibrant, vital she/mans about town in L.A. indie music scene’s history, Seandie’s amazing presence in his unique abstraction of actual “drag” was unmistakable! Every time you would hear that basso profundo slo-mo “Uh-huuuuuuh” (his usual shorthand for when something was fab) from somewhere backstage at an Ann Magnuson concert, you knew all was right with the world.
I was lucky enough to perform with him in Billy Wisdom and the Hee-Shees and Kashiselvis (opening for the Gun Club, among other places!) and to be asked to do a backing track for “Female Trouble” that he used for solo appearances. And of course, Glue was sort of the first real Silverlake sensation and practically invented Sunset Junction.
But it was also having P.J. Goldfinger sweet talk us out of a coke arrest while we were cruising MaCarthur Park in Kash’s Lincoln Continental. Or hanging with him at Susan Tyrell’s apartment when I always got kicked out if her latest fireman date showed up. Or having an embarrassing moment in a night club restroom when he tried to squeeze into the stall with me! But most all, as Lina Lecaro said, it was his sense of event, of just showing up in the perfect place every time, and being the frosting for every social moment, adding buzz, pizazz and panache (and a tasteful soupcon of pure wackiness) to everything!
Mike Hoffman (aka Surfer Mike): A paragraph to summarize Seande? Dang tall order but here goes…Call it luck, call it destiny, but in 1994 i guess I was new enough and mysterious enough to catch his eye. It started as me being his plus 1 and ended up being a 20 year plus friendship/partnership …hustles in mexico, surviving the depression. and of course rock and roll. We both barely used alarm clocks unless it was a disco nap of course, and there was no such things as rules or shame. Well, I already lived by the no rules thing, but the shame part is something I will always hold dear to me. Thank you Sean, you were right! Haha. Herb and Perry Mason was the norm in daylight hours, and figuring out the list for the night’s festivities was the other top priority. Everything else in his eyes was “watevs.” Yes, this was the mid-nineties. Rent/mortgage was cheap. Sure, there was side jobs/hustles, but that all blurred in comparison to what the night had to offer.
Everyone that knew Seande has a story or 100. I have a million, lol. Here’s one…It was probably 1997 or so, Seande picked me up in the Polara and we headed to The Whiskey. L7 was playing and Seande knew i loved them, and well, Sean did too. And sean was fiercely loyal to the bands he loved. it was ON. We parked on Sunset, like a million times before. Sean got ready in the car — eyelashes, makeup, what shoes to wear — the usual. I hurried him up as I did not want to miss a song. 30 minutes later we were in.
Of course, the show was insane. I lost one of my shoes and was sweating something fierce. Of course, true to form, I lost him the minute we walked in, and when I finally saw him on the street way after the show ended (he had been backstage), I’m sere he looked at me, laughed in that laugh, and said, “Looks like you had fun. Come on, let’s go. On the way home he informed me he had to stop just for a minute at the Firehouse, the after-hours disco thing next to The Abbey, that of course his friends owned. I was amazed that after such a rad show he still wanted more. And a disco at that. It was impressive, and I told him I was tired and didn’t have a shoe, and would nap but to please to not stay long. Ha! I woke up at probably like 4 am going 75mph east on Beverly Blvd. He was blowing lights and telling me not to worry, as he knew all the cops and even had “a name” to throw, you know, just in case.
I laid down on the seat, glancing up, occasionally noticing his Cruella DeVille half-gloves, with Redd Kross blaring from the boombox. I thought, “This is it. Your mom was right. maybe LA is insane and that I might get caught up with the wrong people.” Well, I felt the car slow down, and there I was on Manzanita Street. I swear, it took like 8 minutes to get from Robertson Blvd to the Junction. Whew, I said good night I think, and crashed out.
The next day, Sean called, probably around about 3 pm, and the first thing he said to me was, “Wasn’t that show amazing last night???” And then he asked me if i wanted to go to the Blacklight, which was one of our favorite bars at the time, lol. I just laughed and said, “Of course,” but that i would walk there and see him in a bit haha. I hung up and realized that Los Angeles was exactly where I needed to be, and that Seande and I would always be friends, and that’s exactly what happened.
Love u sean . THIS TOWN IS DEFINITELY YOUR TOWN ❤️❤️❤️❤️??
Bob Lee: He was, as so many people are pointing out, a completely unique person, but there was something comfortably familiar about him as well. He was this fountain of positive, benevolent energy that I’m thinking was familiar to me from the movies rather than any real person… like he was Mary Poppins or something.
William Tutton: The best tribute I can give to Sean DeLear right now is to share a video that Davy Willis made to a song I wrote for Seandie to sing with Glue. Davy’s arrangement here changed it, but for the better. This video is one of the great honors of my life.
“Take a trip through one end to the other of our immediate, shared orbit.
“Thank you Seandie. It was such a joy to write for and perform with you.”
…Just make sure you stress that in a world of cruel, bitter, jealous queens, Seandie was never cruel, never bitter and maybe only a teensie bit bit jealous at some small points here and there.
…He ended every Glue show with telling the audience “Don’t forget to vote!”
…And in the days of early simple thrills, he knew where to find valium sold in a cafe before anyone else did.
…23 years ago he gave me a massive 1940’s editor desk which i still have, and will always have.
well said, perfect… <3 to Sean DeLear
My heart is with my Los Angeles friends and extended family today ( and since the news) I wish I could be there in person to share the love , tears and hugs. Sean de Lear defied all categories. He had a big heart and smile that was infectious. He could make you forget everything . A kind , compassionate and superbly talented and intelligent human being . The angels are in the best of company . Fly on angel.