Before the terms Indie, DIY, or Free Music were ever sputtered out of any hipster’s mouth, there was Daniel Johnston. Today I want to tell you about the amazing songwriter Daniel Johnston, and give you some insight on his music, art, and illness.
Daniel Johnston was born in January 22, 1961 from a right winged Christian family, at a young age he felt separated emotionally and spiritually. Ever since he got his first tape recorder he became obsessed with recording his thoughts on cassettes. Daniel went to a local college and that’s where he met his artistic vice Laurie Allen. Laurie Allen would later on to become the subject of hundreds of songs. Daniel saw Laurie as every thing good and the most beautiful girl in the world. Over the next 20 years Daniel will write hundreds of songs about his love for Laurie., but has not seen her in 18 years. Daniel originally only wanted to be an artist, but started writing songs to amuse Laurie.
After being seen as “Unprofitable Servant” by his parents they sent him to live with his brother in Houston. While there he recorded Yip/Jump music with a cassette recorder and a toy organ on a work out bench that he rigged up to be a studio. After a year his brother kicked him out saying “You will not become successful with your music and art!” then he moved in with his sister in San Marcos. There Daniel recorded “Hi, How Are You” in the middle of his first nervous breakdown, along with a series of JOE songs documenting the tension between him and his family.
Daniel Johnston is the kind of person that decides what he wants to do, and then goes for it will every thing he has. In 1984 he bought a moped and decided to work for the traveling carnival selling corndogs. One day the carnival Daniel was working for stopped in Austin Texas. Now this is where the legend of Daniel Johnston begins.
One day at the carnival He was going to the bathroom, apparently he was taking to...