Friday, April 21, 2006

daniel johnston, laura barton

A lovely article on Daniel Johnston appears in today's Guardian, enlivened as ever by Laura Barton's lovely writing.

There is certainly something naive about Johnston as he sits here this afternoon, thumb rasping at his cigarette lighter, and reminiscing about the time he bought every kind of pen Wal-Mart had to offer "just to try 'em out". He avoids my gaze, staring intently at the coffee table, unless I volunteer enthusiasm for his music, or Feuerzeig's film, at which point his eyes dash up to meet mine, round and glad and unblinking: "What did you think?" he'll demand. "Have you seen it? Did you think it was funny? Did you like the record? You did? How much?" I stretch my arms out to the size of a large trout. "Alright, alright," he smiles and nods. "That's good," and resumes gazing at the coffee table.
Everytime I see Johnston he looks more like one of his own drawings, or Everett True, or a character in a sad Harvey Pekar comic. I hope Everett True never googles his own name - I'm exaggerating, Everett, if you do.

You can listen to some of Daniel's songs here.

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