Monday, December 28, 2009

Vic Chestnutt 1964-2009

On Christmas day, as everyone was enjoying their gifts, a gift was taken away. Vic Chestnutt passed away on Dec 25th of an apparent drug overdose. Chestnutt was a powerful singer/songwriter that was a fixture in Athens and the Indie music scene. He has collaborated with all of the big Athens bands (REM, Widespread Panic and others) and is well known in the music biz for his dark and emotional songs. Chestnutt battled depression and has admitted to attempting suicide several times in his life due to the demons that haunted him. This time he was successful. Even though he is no longer with us, his music will live on and continue to influence songwriters everywhere.

I like his music and I have always admired his lyrics, they are truthful and brutally honest. Most of his songs were really dark and you could tell that he was battling some demons and was completely tormented. He was abandoned as a child, he had a tragic car wreck that left him paralyzed from the waist down and in a wheel chair and his medical bills were insurmountable. You can feel his pain while listening to his music and couldn’t help but think that he would not be with us for long. Just like Elliot Smith who was also a great singer/songwriter and battled depression, Chestnutt died far too early! I have seen Vic perform several times and he was one of the most powerful and intense performers I have ever witnessed. He was a unique talent and he will be missed!

If you would like to help contribute to the fund to help pay down Chestnutt’s medical bills, please visit long time friend and collaborator Kristin Hersh’s website.

R.I.P Vic!

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