The Artist’s Ego (Brucie’s Three Steps to Creative Happiness)
Bruce Dalzell at the Front Room
Bruce Dalzell | Patriarch of Athens Music
SAD NEWS: J.D. Hutchison Has Died
Reviewed in the United States on March 15, 2019
This album opens strongly with his blues song “Little Legs Moan”: “‘Don’t want to hurt you’ / That’s what she said / She did not hurt me, boys / She killed me stone dead / With the little legs moan.”
These lines from “Another Fool’s Café” shows his way of poetry-izing lyrics: “There’s always an empty table or two / It’s a hill jack twilight zone / The door is always open / And the lights are always on / Ain’t no bottom to the bottle, boys / No difference in the night and day / There ain’t no hands on the clock / In another fool’s café.”
Another standout song is his “Since My Bird has Flied Away,” which has been covered by Ingrid Lucia & The Flying Neutrinos, John Kirkpatrick and Chris Parkinson, and The Local Girls. Any singer-songwriter will probably tell you that the ultimate compliment is other people covering your songs. A few lyrics: “I need to change my head around / Maybe trip out to the zoo / Take a walk downtown / Hell, I don’t know what to do / But nothing seems to matter / Since my bird has flied away.” The bird, of course, is a woman.
Readers of this review should make heavy use of Amazon’s preview snippets of J.D. Hutchison’s songs on this page. Fans of roots music (defined as various combinations of blues, folk, country, bluegrass, and whatever else the singer-songwriter knows will make the song better) will find much to like. J.D. Hutchison is a regionally famous singer-songwriter who in my humble opinion ought to be at least nationally famous — and a whole lot richer. Better late than later.
I love this album, all songs of which are by J.D. Hutchison.
By the way, all the lyrics of this album can be seen at <http://www.jdhutchison.com/lyrics.html>.
Support local music, and be aware that in the age of the Internet and the WWW, Athens County is local worldwide.
Terry Smith: “Athens music scene loses big part of its heart and soul; goodbye J.D.”
The tight-knit Athens music community took a major hit Tuesday, Nov. 2,  when singer/songwriter/picker/raconteur/bandleader J.D. Hutchison succumbed to cancer. In late October as word spread that Hutchison’s time was short, tributes flooded social media from near and far. They haven’t stopped since his passing.
Like so many others, I had tremendous respect and admiration for John, both as a person and a musician. He was among the most interesting, funny, iconoclastic and massively talented individuals I’ve ever known. He couldn’t speak a line of song or sentence without injecting a dollop of his singular perspective and wit into it.
Read the rest here:
We find our first mentors right beside us as we’re born and grow: fathers and mothers, older sisters and brothers. We find other mentors out in the greater world as we come of age. J.D. Hutchison was one to me. We were fast friends from our first meeting in ‘74, and he taught me so much by example, and encouraged me as an artist and musician to follow the heart.
J.D. was a true renaissance man who studied the many facets of our world and reflected upon them all as a cartoonist, actor, songwriter and musician. Despite his relative obscurity–he served as a sort of court jester of the college town of Athens, Ohio for much of his life–he influenced a great many people in his 81 years. He made us laugh as we looked deeper.
John was anti-music business and you had to tease song pitches out of him, like when my band Hot Rize grabbed “My Little Darlin’” after he sang it to me a capella just outside a honkytonk men’s room door. His performances, whether as a solo, with his bluegrass brother Robert as The Hutchison Brothers or with the rock band Hillbilly Jive, were exciting, entertaining and vital, each one a unique experience. As good as his onstage performances were, it was in conversation that he really shone. He was always engaged, interested, generous and thoughtful.
On our last meeting, Jan and I had a short but wonderful visit with J.D. — going for fish sandwiches at Miller’s, hearing new and old poems and songs played on his piano in his spartan apartment where he displayed his assortment of barometers and umpteen Scrabble sets. He was wearing a t-shirt that said “Master of the Tiles.” Love was shared as always, and that love remains now and will remain for as long as I live.
I remember Frank McDermott letting me take an accordion I was thinking about buying over to J.D. at Casa to see what he thought about it. J.D. set the case down on the floor by his booth, opened the case and immediately started playing a tune. Sherrie turned down the music in the restaurant and J.D. carried on playing like he was in his living room. Well of course, he was.
Friend, mentor, bench warmer, artist, bard, and family member, J.D. was all these things to me. He gave of himself to all around him with a mischievous twinkle in his eyes. He loved young folks and was always encouraging their dreams, musical or otherwise. He was my “Funkle” and I was/am honored to have him in my life. All hail The Last of the Iron-Assed Folksingers!
I feel blessed by every moment I had with J.D., first just loving his musicianship and later in fascinating conversations that left me marveling at the wise insights he so casually dispensed. J.D. treated friends like family, and I never saw him act superior to any other person, not once. He would call me Steven, and in parting company he’d make this hand gesture, kind of cockin’ it at me, and his eyes always seemed to twinkle when he smiled farewell. I’ll carry J.D.’s wonderful songs, endearing smile and twinkling eyes in my heart always.
See More Tributes Here:
TUESDAY NIGHT SONGWRITER CIRCLE.
Meet Tuesdays 7pm in the 1804 Room of Baker Center at Ohio University.
Ohio University Singer-Songwriter Circle On Pinterest
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