Photo by Stan Lewis
Sara Romweber, the powerhouse drummer who held the beat in the first lineup of jangle-pop heroes Let’s Active and who went on to play in Snatches of Pink and, later, with her brother Dexter Romweber, has died of cancer, according to music journalist David Menconi. She was 55.
Menconi, the longtime music and arts reporter who recently left the News & Observer newspaper in Raleigh, N.C., tweeted the news this morning, writing, “Alas, she is another gone too soon — from cancer at age 55, preceded in death by her old Let’s Active bandmate Faye Hunter.”
According to an Instagram post by Superchunk’s Mac McCaughan — “she was so important to me that i wrote a paper about her my freshman year in college,” he wrote — Romweber died on Monday.
In 1981 at the age of 17, Romweber joined frontman/producer Mitch Easter and bassist Hunter in Let’s Active shortly before the group’s first performance, opening for R.E.M., for whom Easter would go on to produce the Chronic Town EP, Murmur and Reckoning.
Romweber would perform on Let’s Active’s debut EP — 1983’s Afoot, which included the classic “Every Word Means No” — and the band’s first full-length album, 1984’s Cypress, before leaving.
She’d go on to play in the Chapel Hill, N.C., band Snatches of Pink, and, in more recent years, in a duo formed with her brother, Flat Duo Jets’ Dexter Romweber.
Easter and Romweber reunited Let’s Active for a benefit in 2014, with Game Theory’s Suzi Ziegler filling in on bass for Hunter, who had died by suicide the year prior. It was the band’s first performance in 24 years.
In his tribute to Romweber on Twitter, Menconi wrote, “Sara did not seem like one to call attention to herself. But you just had to see her play once, and you’d never forget her.”
RIP Sara Romweber — one of the greats. pic.twitter.com/cZPAJS9veH
— David Menconi (@NCDavidMenconi) March 5, 2019
View this post on Instagram
Sara Romweber was one of the kindest, most unique & inspiring people i’ve known & she passed away yesterday. She was so important to me that i wrote a paper about her my freshman year in college. The Romweber home on Pine St in Carrboro was open to everyone & the heart of a musical community — you can see some of this in the episode of “IRS The Cutting Edge” if it’s on anywhere. A fantastically powerful and creative drummer — watching her play was a joy no matter what band — & I’ll be listening to these masterpieces this morning & thinking about Sara and her family. #RIP #sararomweber #letsactive
PREVIOUSLY ON SLICING UP EYEBALLS
- Let’s Active reuniting for first performance in 24 years tonight at N.C. cancer benefit
- Faye Hunter, of Let’s Active, 1954-2013