In Memoriam: Sweet, Sad Rocker Vic Chesnutt


I caught this piece on NPR the other day as I was eating lunch. It was one of those moments where everything stopped. I sat, still, quietly, at the kitchen table. My lunch was long gone, and still I remained, listening to the entire program before I arose from by chair. I went straight to the laptop and read more about the man.

I had not known much about the guy prior to this. I read that he had put out something like 16 albums. And I couldn’t have named one song before I happened into that radio program.

I had heard of him, somehow, somewhere. I can’t remember the context. He has such an unusual name, one I had not commonly heard. Vic. Chesnutt. Auto mechanic? Rustic furniture saleman? Writer of western tales of wrangling and woe? It has a certain ring to it. One that shall not soon pass from my mind.

Life is like that sometimes, you find out about something when it has already gone by. Vic Chesnutt is that for me.

Check it out here:

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About big jonny

The man, the legend. The guy who started it all back in the Year of Our Lord Beer, 2000, with a couple of pages worth of idiotic ranting hardcoded on some random porn site that would host anything you uploaded, a book called HTML for Dummies (which was completely appropriate), a bad attitude (which hasn’t much changed), and a Dell desktop running Win95 with 64 mgs of ram and a six gig hard drive. Those were the days. Then he went to law school. Go figure. Flagstaff, Arizona, USA

8 thoughts on “In Memoriam: Sweet, Sad Rocker Vic Chesnutt

  1. Thanks. Friend of mine, ultimate drunk cyclist really never seen anyone fall off drunk so much, just drunk himself to death so this is a bit poignant for me now.

  2. Ya know, I listened to about fifteen minutes of this interview yesterday and I thought it was a terrible interview. I thought the woman doing the interview asked weak questions and Chestnutt gave weak answers. His music didn’t strike me as much, either.

    That said, I thought it was a sad story of a guy who caught a lot of tough breaks. It wasn’t without its bright spots, that interview, but on the whole I was a bit disappointed.

  3. D2, this isn’t that early December interview with Chesnutt. This is from this January, the 7th, with a few of his friends (Michael Stipe, Guy Picciotto and Jem Cohen) following Chesnutt’s suicide on December 25th. The host of Fresh Air, Terry Gross, looks back at the interview she conducted just weeks prior – the interview you are referring to. This piece is pretty damn good. Check it out. Fast forward to around the 20 minute mark if you want to jump right into it.

  4. Big Jonny,
    I think we’re talking about the same interview, but I only heard part of it. Perhaps I’m not giving it enough of a chance… I heard the one on Jan 7 when she looked back at the interview, but I didn’t hear anything from Michael Stipe, etc. Maybe I didn’t hear all of it.

    Anyway. Good story. I just think Terry Gross sort of asked some ridiculously lightweight questions. Hadn’t heard of Vic Chestnutt before, and I wasn’t too impressed with the clips of his music, but hell. I like (and create) all sorts of shit music. Maybe I shouldn’t be judging.