Laurie Lindeen Dies: Zuzu’s Petals Singer-Songwriter & Author Was 62

Laurie Lindeen Dies: Zuzu’s Petals Singer-Songwriter & Author Was 62

Laurie Lindeen, who blazed a trail in the grunge era as a guitarist with indie rockers Zuzu’s Petals and later chronicled the experience in a book, died Monday at 62 in Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, of a brain aneurysm.

Lindeen moved from Wisconsin in 1987 to join the burgeoning Minneapolis music scene, where acts like Prince, The Replacements, Hüsker Dü, Soul Asylum, The Jayhawks, and Babes in Toyland were putting the city on the map.

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Zuzu’s Petals, which took its name from the rose petals carried by James Stewart’s character in the film It’s a Wonderful Life, made a mark at local clubs as an all-female band at a time when that was still somewhat of a novelty. They recorded a debut four-song cassette with help from Dave Pirner of Soul Asylum and Gary Louris of the Jayhawks.

The band later released two full-length albums for Twin/Tone Records, 1992′s When No One’s Looking and 1994′s The Music of Your Life.

Lindeen married Paul Westerberg of the Replacements, and she gradually pulled back from touring extensively, but still occasionally appeared at Minneapolis clubs. She turned her focus to writing, producing Petal Pusher: A Rock and Roll Cinderella Story in 2007 for Atria Books and contributing an essay to the New York Times.

She earned a master’s degree in creative writing from the University of Minnesota while also raising her son with Westerberg, Johnny.

In recent years, she offered writing and literature lessons at the University of St. Thomas, St. Cloud State University, the Loft Literary Center, and local grammar schools. She also led writing retreats at Madeline Island in Wisconsin and other locations.

A recent writing, My Third Act, published by the University of Minnesota Alumni Association, was about her move to Martha’s Vineyard with her new partner, Jim Diem.

In addition to her son and partner, she is survived by her father, Lance Lindeen of Northville, Michigan, and three siblings, Megan Lindeen of Madison, Wisconsin, Hillary Benson of Hilton Head, South Carolina, and Chris Lindeen of Santa Fe, New Mexico. No memorial plans have been announced.


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