Jump to content
Celery Man

Justin Townes Earle dead at 38

Recommended Posts

Horrible news for the whole Earle family...and all of us.  RIP, young man.  Gonna hang back and listen.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Drugs or suicide.

Fucking sucks. From what I understand he had gotten clean, and his last album was damn good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Awful. I’d guess suicide but feel horrible saying it. I didn’t love all of his stuff but the stuff that struck with me was amazing. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fuck. One of my favorites. Was just listening to him today and thinking about how great it will be this see him live again when things are back to normal. Incredible talent. Sucks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Damn.  I really enjoyed Harlem River Blues, but didn't keep up after that.

Addiction is a stone cold killer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, jimmyjazz said:

Goddammit.  No parent should outlive their kids.  

Especially not fucking Steve Earle.

Really sad. Possibly suicide I guess but if he was actually clean for awhile I bet he relapsed and ODed on fent or H.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have it on good authority that as of last year he was not clean...But he seemed like the kind of guy who was forever on and off the wagon, and with heroin, that's even more dangerous than just staying hooked. That's what got Eddy Shaver, just to name one, and I bet that's what got JT.  You stay clean a few months, load up on your old dose, lay down and never get up. 

I read he was touring when the pandemic brought the curtains down on concerts. I wonder if he was the kind of guy who needed the road to stay sober, if it wasn't boredom and depression that got him to relapse. (If that is what it was.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, TwiceHorn said:

Damn.  I really enjoyed Harlem River Blues, but didn't keep up after that.

Addiction is a stone cold killer.

This is easily my favorite album of his.  Really horrible news.  My money would be strongly on relapse and OD.  Some people, even when sober, seem to be constantly on the edge of a relapse.   And as mentioned above, relapsing in this drug environment is playing Russian roulette but 5 bullets and one empty chamber.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, TwiceHorn said:

Damn.  I really enjoyed Harlem River Blues, but didn't keep up after that.

Addiction is a stone cold killer.

I should probably add that, yes, there is an assumption there.  But even recovering/red addicts are at higher risk for death from relapse, suicide with or without relapse, and collateral damage from addiction.  There's little or no moral judgment in the statement.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I saw him last fall. He seemed irritable and rushed his set, skipped about 5 songs from the set list. First time I saw him a coupme was once of the best live performances I've seen in my life. This was not that. I assumed he was just having a bad day but looking back I wonder if he was trying to get back to the bus to get a fix.

 

I never met the guy but his music and performances were so personal and I spent so much time with it, this feels exactly like losing a close friend. Devastated and my heat goes out to his family. 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tommy Womack posted this.  Tommy is super sweet guy with as many or more demons that Justin.  He used to play with Todd Snider and Todd describes him "as the craziest dude I know."  Tommy also plays a lot in a band with Will Kimbrough.  I really like Tommy and he has helped me immensely with some of my problems.    Tommy's going some shit right now as his cancer has come back.    

I knew Justin. We’re going back ten or twelve years ago. We ran in the same circle you might say. He was Justin Earle then, no Townes yet. He was a total sweetheart and really had his life together. I cherish a memory of a great long and positive talk we had one night at Folk Alliance, bellied up to the bar, drinking Coca Colas, talking about how the music biz didn’t owe us a goddam thing; it was all up to us. —  One time I left my harmonica holder at a club in Ireland the month before he went on tour there. He found my harp holder and brought it back home to me. Who does that? —- The last time I saw him was at his first record release party. Then he went on the road for basically the rest of his life and I never saw him ever again. And after a while I heard - like everybody else - that he lost the plot. And that he got worse. I was really looking forward to a great conversation we might have again some day, and now that won’t happen.  I don’t miss Justin Townes Earle. I miss Justin Earle. Deep down, beneath his demons, he was beautiful cat. Rest In Peace, Justin Earle. The torture you lived with is now over.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, MaybeACoordinator said:

You stay clean a few months, load up on your old dose, lay down and never get up. 

That, and heroin is such a crapshoot nowadays. You can get one bag and be cool, and the next one will be 5 times as strong. It's killing people left and right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, hullabelew said:

Check out the guitarist on JTE's Letterman appearance.

 

 

Flip side of the coin is how much like cold dogshit Isbell looks in this video compared to him now in recovery.

It must have been a challenge for JTE to... be a musician son of a musician, and an addict son of an addict. Listening to this video really draws a distinction between what he's doing vocally as a... almost a folk crooner, as compared to his father who is a lyrical steam release valve. He also seems to me to have been in a really tough position as far as his gift/talent - he was very good and talented, but not so overwhelmingly so to ever get him out of his dad's shadow. I have no idea if that was an issue for him at all, I haven't read any interviews where he talked about that if those exist. It would be tough to have a passion for something and enough talent to deserve recognition, but maybe never quite getting all the way to the place where you stand apart from your somewhat legendary father or certainly your namesake. He used his middle name, so maybe he was at peace with that.

I was at the 1st Old 97s city fair concert in Dallas where he played, followed by the Drive By Truckers and then the Old 97s. That's a concert I'd like to go to again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, I had to stare at that clip for a minute before figuring out it was Isbell.  He looks bloated and drunk.  Probably because he was bloated and drunk.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, jimmyjazz said:

Yeah, I had to stare at that clip for a minute before figuring out it was Isbell.  He looks bloated and drunk.  Probably because he was bloated and drunk.

Whoa.  I would've had no idea if you guys hadn't said anything.  He looks like hammered dog shit.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
43 minutes ago, Chad Fuck said:

Whoa.  I would've had no idea if you guys hadn't said anything.  He looks like hammered dog shit.

jason-isbell-475.jpg

46902035534_308a5b50df_z.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Al_4_ISU said:

jason-isbell-475.jpg

46902035534_308a5b50df_z.jpg

I thought that top picture might have been from a Saxon Pub gig, but I went to check and the background seems different. There's really good videos of that gig where you can see his hands, and I always end up watching to try and figure out what he's doing on guitar and then just being distracted at how much of a high school trombone player he looks like.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Celery Man said:

I haven't read any interviews where he talked about that if those exist. It would be tough to have a passion for something and enough talent to deserve recognition, but maybe never quite getting all the way to the place where you stand apart from your somewhat legendary father or certainly your namesake.

Yeah, no idea if he ever addressed specifically the talent part but I think it's pretty open knowledge that his relationship with Steve was complicated to say the least. I saw him play in 2015 or 2016 and between songs part of his banter went, "people always ask me what's it like to have Steve Earle as your father? I tell'em, your guess is as good as mine". 

Always thought this was a really beautiful song about him reckoning with the self destructive traits he got from his father and trying to find solace in the goodness he got from his mom. RIP.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, UncleSonny said:

Yeah, no idea if he ever addressed specifically the talent part but I think it's pretty open knowledge that his relationship with Steve was complicated to say the least. I saw him play in 2015 or 2016 and between songs part of his banter went, "people always ask me what's it like to have Steve Earle as your father? I tell'em, your guess is as good as mine". 

Always thought this was a really beautiful song about him reckoning with the self destructive traits he got from his father and trying to find solace in the goodness he got from his mom. RIP.

 

I've read some interviews and listened to him on some podcasts, and he's pretty open and blunt that Steve wasn't around much at all, and when he was around they butted heads.

They also made peace with each other later on, and developed a better relationship, but during JTE's formative years, his old man as a no show.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
32 minutes ago, Celery Man said:

I thought that top picture might have been from a Saxon Pub gig, but I went to check and the background seems different. There's really good videos of that gig where you can see his hands, and I always end up watching to try and figure out what he's doing on guitar and then just being distracted at how much of a high school trombone player he looks like.

iirc he was a hs trumpet player...so not far off.  i think he may have played or even got a scholarship to memphis for it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When they toured together, they did a version of Mr. Mudd and Mr. Gold.  I always felt it was really uncomfortable.  None of the videos on youtube are very good either.  But this version on just him....with it sped up a LOT...I really dig it.  

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And this one just kills me.  "It's a setback at best, a shame fo sho"; "I'm losing patience with my only friend"; 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yesterday I listened to his appearance on Chris Shiflett's "Walking the Floor" podcast that was recorded in 2017, and this morning Broken Record podcast released an interview with him that was recorded in early 2020.

He sounds sober in the 2017 podcast, but the 2020 podcast has a very different feel.  He sounds manic, rushed, and a little shaky.  It's tough, but also a really good listen and the performances are excellent yet.  I guess the difference between where he was in '17 and where he was 7-8 months ago is pretty striking.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
14 minutes ago, Al_4_ISU said:

Yesterday I listened to his appearance on Chris Shiflett's "Walking the Floor" podcast that was recorded in 2017, and this morning Broken Record podcast released an interview with him that was recorded in early 2020.

He sounds sober in the 2017 podcast, but the 2020 podcast has a very different feel.  He sounds manic, rushed, and a little shaky.  It's tough, but also a really good listen and the performances are excellent yet.  I guess the difference between where he was in '17 and where he was 7-8 months ago is pretty striking.

Where did you see this?   Is this the Pushkin podcast?

Found it:  

 

Edited by hullabelew

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's too bad they had a falling out.  I wonder if his last year or two would have looked different with Isbell's influence in his life?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fuck heroin, man. Still enraged about this. His struggles kept him from broader success after Harlem River but he was one hell of a talent. His stage presence solo on a good night is some of the best I've seen. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Last time I saw him was at 3Ten. Prine did a taping upstairs that night so he had a big crowd. He probably talked more than he played but it was still a good show. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/24/2020 at 11:36 AM, Celery Man said:

I was at the 1st Old 97s city fair concert in Dallas where he played, followed by the Drive By Truckers and then the Old 97s. That's a concert I'd like to go to again.

Ditto, Hood flubbing his own lyrics.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've only walked out of one concert in my life.  It was Justin's tour in 2014 or 2015.  (Single Mothers tour, I think)  He was in a shit mood, insulting the audience, acting like he was doing the crowd a favor for being there.   He just seemed generally bored and irritated.  Probably 800 people in a 1,000 seat venue so it wasn't about the lack of a crowd.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hulla got so pissed that he went and helped the opening act, Cory Branan, sell merch.  I sat there and endured the show/rants/odd declarations of how much JTE loved his wife and would not do anything to jeopardize that love.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


mpu


Football ... Basketball ... Baseball ... Other Sports ... Recruiting ... Gambling ... Movies & TV ... Music ... Hobbies ... Lulz ... Food & Travel ... Daily Texan ... Help ... For Sale ... Politics ... Board Discussion
×
×
  • Create New...