Progressive juggernauts Mastodon lost their longtime manager Nick John in September 2018 following a battle with pancreatic cancer. In a statement, the band wrote that they considered John to be a member of the band and thanked him for his patience, love and friendship. As it turns out, Mastodon will have another chance to honor John’s legacy this Record Store Day on April 13 with a special vinyl release featuring Mastodon’s rendition of Led Zeppelin’s classic “Stairway to Heaven.”
“In early September 2018, we lost one of our closest friends and our biggest fan, our manager Nick John,” Mastodon offered of the release. “He was essentially the band’s dad. From our highest highs to our lowest lows, he was always there. Every single move we made went through him first as our trust in him was marrow deep. His favorite band besides us and Gojira was Led Zeppelin. We were asked to perform ‘Stairway to Heaven’ at his funeral. Afterwards, finding out that someone had recorded it, we figured we should record a studio version and release it on RSD as a tribute to Nick with all the proceeds to be donated to pancreatic cancer research. We would not be the band we are today without the help of Nick John. We miss him dearly and think of him always. We love you, buddy!”
The 10-inch vinyl, with cover art paying tribute to John, is limited to 1500 copies and is a Record Store Day exclusive. The studio version is on side A and the live version on side B. All proceeds will be donated to the Hirshberg Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research.