True Love Will Find You In The End

Another musician died recently. Daniel Johnston, who started out as a cult figure on the Austin, Texas music scene, and became a dearly loved and inspirational figure for many figures in popular music, died last week. Kurt Cobain, cited him as an inspiration, calling him the “best songwriter on earth,” and Simpsons creator Matt Groening was influenced by his magic-marker cartoons. Johnston had a lot of health issues, both physical and emotional, he was bi-polar and schizophrenia but they didn’t prevent him from a life of creative output. He began by handing out homemade cassettes of his music on the streets and their low-fi quality only added to the emotional ambience his lyrics and melodies offered up. His voice was high and unsteady and his guitar-playing was probably less than adequate, but his honest and vulnerable lyrics drew you into the songs in spite of all the technical limitations—which says a lot about the power of music. He apparently grew increasingly weaker of late, and passed away of natural causes last week.