Singer/Songwriter Jason Molina Dies

Jason Molina, who recorded under the name Songs:Ohia and fronted the indie rock band Magnolia Electric Co., died Saturday at age 39 due to severe alcoholism.

A statement from his label says, “This is especially hard for us to share. Jason is the cornerstone of Secretly Canadian. Without him there would be no us – plain and simple. His singular, stirring body of work is the foundation upon which all else has been constructed.”

According to Secretly Canadian, Molina died at his home in Indianapolis “of natural causes.” To be more specific, Rolling Stone points out that cause of death was “organ failure resulting from alcohol consumption.”

Photo: Anders Jensen-Urstad
Jason Molina appears on the left.

Molina released Songs: Ohia’s debut, self-titled album in 1997. Following 2002’s Didn’t It Rain, Molina released Magnolia Electric Co. in 2003 and then started recording under that moniker.

His last full-length album with Magnolia Electric Co. was 2009’s Josephine. That was the same year he was forced to cancel shows with singer/songwriter Will Johnson.

Magnolia Electric Co. posted a statement from Molina’s family in September 2011 explaining that the singer/songwriter had spend the past two years “in and out of rehab facilities and hospitals in England, Chicago, Indianapolis and New Orleans.”

The statement said that Molina was working on a West Virginia farm raising goats and chickens and was “looking forward to making great music again. His family asked fans to contribute to his medical fund via PayPal, noting that Molina didn’t have medical insurance and had racked up a substantial amount of medical bills.  

Fans are again being encouraged to donate. Secretly Canadian says “fans can contribute to Jason’s medical fund as a memorial gift by sending money via PayPal.”