It was probably one of the saddest sounding voice mails I had ever received. When I heard a brokenhearted Mike Elliott, bassist for Blue Sky Mile, stammer out something about how he had just returned from Portland after being away for the holidays and was a bit surprised and confused to read in The Stranger something about his band breaking up… needless to say, my heart sank.

When I printed the news of BSM's demise two weeks back, I was under the impression that it was public knowledge. Blue Sky Mile's last show would be January 7 at the Paradox, the Paradox had it listed as such on their calendar, the band even announced it on their website, but no one bothered to TELL THE BASSIST!?

Yeah, well, obviously that wasn't the case, but my gullible and foolish ass neglected to put two and two together. Just as I was bracing myself to make a very harsh phone call to Aaron Fishbein, the guitarist who shared the news with me and neglected to mention that was still on the down low, Mike called back, giggled, and cracked, "I had you goin', didn't I!?"

Jackass.

So Mike not knowing about Blue Sky Mile's ending, obviously, was a joke (jokester!), but the fact that Blue Sky Mile is breaking up, well, that's plain fact.

"I don't want to say it wasn't fun," said guitarist Aaron Fishbein. "We just weren't as into it as we felt we should've been. All of us have school and work, and the band took up so much time in the past four years. Now I think we're all looking forward to being normal and actually having spare time."

So there's no drama to speak of. No one, as Aaron tried to convince me, "came out of the closet and broke up the band by being gay." (They've never been a real serious bunch.) Really, it's just time to move on. (It doesn't help, though, that the band's label, Initial Records, recently called it quits, as did the band's van).

Not to imply that the last four years for BSM haven't had many highlights.

For one, they're the only band that I can think of that had an ice cream social in place of a typical CD release party. And there was also that time during a show in October when Mike was so into his playing, he neglected to notice he had smacked himself in the face with his bass and punctured a hole through his bottom lip, causing him to bleed his way through a song that starts out "October blood runs cold…"

Blue Sky Mile released two records (a self-titled EP, and a full-length, Sands Once Seas), played shows all over town from the Crocodile to Ballard's Brick House, and toured the nation. They received far more than their 15 minutes, I'd say, so thanks for the rock and roll and the memories, guys. Oh, and FYI to Mike: Payback's a bitch, buddy. MEGAN SELING

megan@thestranger.com

Need more? You can hear my personal picks for the week on 107.7 The End every Monday and Friday at 8:30 a.m. during DJ No Name's The Morning Alternative.

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