When word that David Peel passed away hit the streets and newswires on April 6, those who knew the man or knew who he was were saddened. It’s hard to say goodbye to anyone, least of all a man who set the 1970s New York City music scene on its proverbial ear. But when a former Lower East Side bandmate revealed the distressing news that David Peel perished in relative poverty and that scant acquaintances had stepped forward to help cover his funeral costs, social media was shocked.
Harold C. Black has been tickling the fancy of the ladies for decades. Black co-founded the Lower East Side band with David Peel in 1967. Half a century later, Harold’s humbly passing the hat on behalf of his recently departed chum. He has to. Most of the cost of David’s demise is on Black’s personal credit card, and it’s an expense the man is ill-equipped to pay. Harold is at all times a gentleman, however, and gentlemen step up to help a friend in need. Even when that friend is dead.
Paying for funerals is something kindhearted humans do for one another, especially when everyone else looks aside or is too busy to pay attention when the undertaker has his hand out. The thing is, maybe nobody else understood that David Peel died lacking the dollars to deal with his own demise.
Friends likely figured that David Peel died with enough insurance to cover funeral expenses. Fans probably assumed that Yoko Ono and other well-moneyed past and present associates would cut a check forthwith. In either case, friends and fans would be sorely mistaken. The preposterous truth is, few of David’s friends, fans, or former associates have thus far contributed money to bury Manhattan’s most notable marijuana minstrel. So far, the cost of Peel’s burial at Calverton National Cemetery is on his pal Harold’s credit card, and the man needs a hand paying down the charges that are expected to total more than ten thousand dollars.
That’s the polite way of putting it. Some of Harold’s and David’s friends and Facebook followers have been a bit blunter in the manner with which they expressed their collective outrage in light of the fact that so few are sharing the cost of burying a man who meant so much to so many.
“If every motherfu*ker who posted a picture of themself with David Peel last week could find it in their hearts to send ten or twenty bucks to help with funeral expenses, it wouldn’t all rest on the shoulders of that good man, Harold C. Black…we all know how many millionaire “friends” David Peel had, because they all flash their pix of themselves with him like hippie punk radical credibility credentials, but nobody but Harold stepped up to help bury the brother-even twenty bucks…something to think about…the millionaires and billionaires he knew have not kicked in a dime, so Harold put it all on his credit card, because he is a real man and a real friend.”
Granted, the post excerpted above originated a day or three ago. At the time, there seemed no secure way for folks to make online contributions to David Peel’s funeral fund. Now there is. If you wanted to help but did not know where or how, now you do.
Help a brother out
Those with the wherewithal to defray the cost of David’s wake and burial are kindly invited to send donations directly to HaroldC.firstname.lastname@example.org via PayPal.
Beware bogus David Peel funeral fund scams
Shortly after David Peel died, someone set up a bogus GoFundMe account and collected cash in his name. As Black noted earlier this week, that account has been closed, and donations were refunded.
[Feature Image by Frankie Ziths/AP Images]