Song Of The Day: Justin Townes Earle, “Who Am I To Say”

Justin Townes Earle

“If this is gonna be about my dad, save your time.”

That was the very first thing Justin Townes Earle said when he answered the phone. The plan was to talk about his new album, The Good Life, his debut album proper.

But he most certainly wasn’t having one that morning, that was for damn sure.

He was tired. But more than that, he was weary. A deep, heartbreaking weariness that couldn’t be denied. It was instantl;y clear this interview wasn’t happening–and it had nothing to do with me, or artistic difficulty, or what have you.

The boy’s soul was TIRED.

Furthermore, it would have been CRUEL to have tried to have a conversation. We spoke for a few minutes; at that moment he didn’t need press coverage, he needed a FRIEND, and for the next few minutes, that’s what I was. He wasn’t used to the pressure of the press, he said. He never done major press junkets before, he said. He knew he would face intense probing into his past, and he thought he could handle it.

He apologized for not being up for it. I told him no apologies were necessary. He said he’d be happy to talk in the future. I told him i would like that, but i had no intention of doing so, at least for the immediate future. I made the decision I’d never seek him out–not because I didn’t want to talk to him, but out of respect for that weary and tired soul I spoke to that day.

Sometimes an artist should just be appreciated for their art. If they don’t want to have their soul examined or probed–respect it.

RIP Justin.

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